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GODLEY & CREME

Prog Related • United Kingdom


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Godley & Creme biography
Kevin GODLEY and Lawrence (Lol) CREME, along with Graham GOLDMAN, had been in a number of bands together through-out the 1960's before they joined-up with Eric STEWART as session musicians at Strawberry Studios in Manchester. Together the four formed a song writing and production partnership producing a succession of one-off bubblegum songs that culminated in the top ten hit 'Neanderthal Man' under the name HOTLEGS, who after touring with THE MOODY BLUES, would later evolve into 10CC.
During recordings for 10CC GODLEY and CREME saw the need for an instrument that could replicate string sounds economically and developed the Gizmo, an attachment to a guitar that could create a polyphonic bowing action. Prototypes of the Gizmo were used on a number of 10cc songs, most notably 'Gizmo My Way' a short instrumental penned by GODLEY and CREME and released as the b-side to 'The Wall Street Shuffle'. GODLEY and CREME left 10CC in 1976 to develop and market the Gizmo and undertook an ambitious project to create a showcase album for their invention based around the short demo they had written. Over the following 18 months, the project grew exponentially, resulting in the 3 disc concept album Consequences. Comprising of three parts, the first part, a series of tunes composed almost entirely on the Gizmo and featuring only one vocal song, is followed by a musical play featuring English comedian Peter COOK that forms the bulk of the recording, and ends with a piano concerto entitled 'Blint's Tune (Movements 1-17)'. The primary concept of Consequences is Mother Nature turning against mankind and can only be quelled by music, in the form of a 17-part piano concerto composed by an electrician living below a divorce lawyer's office.

Consequences was not well received on its initial release, due in part to its length and high cost, and to it being released at the height of the Punk rock movement. Several attempts were made to reduce the album to a more commercial length but these also failed, however over the past decades it has gained a well deserved cult following.

The development of the polyphonic synthesiser brought an abrupt end to the Gizmo and GODLEY and CREME soon put Consequences behind them, releasing a series of successful Art-rock albums comprising of shorter intelligently lyrical songs in a similar vein to 10CC, (L, Freeze Frame, Ismism, Bird of Prey and Goodbye Blue Sky), that produced a string of hit singles, such as Under My Thumb, An Englis...
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History Mix 1History Mix 1
Import
Polygram Int'l 1998
Audio CD$39.63
$2.97 (used)
IsmismIsmism
Import
Universal Japan 2010
Audio CD$38.99
freeze frame LPfreeze frame LP
POLYDOR
Vinyl$9.99 (used)
Cry: The Very Best ofCry: The Very Best of
Import
Imports 2014
Audio CD$2.67
$6.46 (used)
ImagesImages
Extra tracks · Import
Spectrum Audio UK 2001
Audio CD$2.86
$1.78 (used)
L / Freeze FrameL / Freeze Frame
Remastered
One Way Records Inc 2000
Audio CD$38.99
$35.00 (used)
Music From Consequences / LMusic From Consequences / L
Import · Remastered
Diablo Records UK 2004
Audio CD$56.88
$24.99 (used)
Freeze Frame / IsmismFreeze Frame / Ismism
Extra tracks · Import
Edsel Records UK 2004
Audio CD$49.95 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
Cry: The Very Best Of - Godley & Creme (2014, CD New) USD $8.06 Buy It Now 2h 34m
Godley & Creme A Little Piece Of Heaven PROMO 45 Polydor Records M 1988 USD $5.00 Buy It Now 2h 54m
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HOTLEGS thinks school stinks JAPAN MINI LP CD GODLEY & CREME 10CC SEALED USD $29.99 Buy It Now 3 days
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GODLEY & CREME discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

GODLEY & CREME top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.90 | 13 ratings
Consequences
1977
3.85 | 20 ratings
L
1978
3.26 | 19 ratings
Freeze Frame
1979
1.77 | 9 ratings
Ismism / Snack Attack
1981
2.51 | 9 ratings
Birds Of Prey
1983
1.76 | 6 ratings
Goodbye Blue Sky
1988

GODLEY & CREME Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

GODLEY & CREME Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

GODLEY & CREME Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.00 | 1 ratings
Music from Consequences
1979
2.31 | 4 ratings
History Mix Vol. 1
1985

GODLEY & CREME Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

2.00 | 1 ratings
Snack Attack
1982

GODLEY & CREME Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 History Mix Vol. 1  by GODLEY & CREME album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1985
2.31 | 4 ratings

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History Mix Vol. 1
Godley & Creme Prog Related

Review by AtomicCrimsonRush
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

2 stars This is very odd and perhaps an experiment more than an actual album with two mammoth and rather tedious epic tracks that are really only a mash up of well known 10CC and Godley and Creme songs blended together like a DJ got hold of them and butchered them for an album. Yet there are some moments of true innovation such as "Big Boys don't cry" meshed with the 'Humdrum Boys', but you have to search hard to find them. The medleys hold some interest but the length is criminal at over 17 minutes each and with horrible synth drum electro rhythms.

Being a compilation of sorts it features some of the great Godley and Creme songs such as the masterpiece 'An Englishman In New York' which is a song I have never forgotten ever since I saw the bizarre streamlined film clip in the 80s. I even tried to write out the lyrics that were indecipherable to a teenager of the 80s but still had fun elements with ideas such as 'demented new york athletes staggering around the block... devotion to Bloomingdales gift wrapped in red in the land of blue rinse... happy to see you, Avon crawling!" The sheer cynical sardonic edge is irrisistible, even when he sings "Hitler is king of the jews." It makes a lot of statements about the human condition "strange apparatus, you've never seen", our waste of resources and our rubbber knecking at what others should or should not be purchasing in a consumer society; "I've got to be the first on our block, no way street, happy to see you, have a nice day". And it was the first time I came across the word "Anglophile" and found out what it meant. The song holds power even today and really it is the pinnacle of brilliance as far as I am concrned. Nothing else the band did came close or moved in the same way.

'Light Me Up' is interesting with female vox and a poppy 80s aroma, but forgettable. 'Save a Mountain for Me' drags interminably until I have had enough of its mediocrity. 'Golden Boy' is okay at first with the deep bass synths but goes on too long with the repetition of "golden boy" grating on the nerves.

Overall this is a poor compilation and if bought just for 'An Englishman In New York' you might be well advised to get hold of "Freeze Frame" instead, that at least had prog songs scattered thereabouts.

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 L by GODLEY & CREME album cover Studio Album, 1978
3.85 | 20 ratings

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L
Godley & Creme Prog Related

Review by HolyMoly
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl and Canterbury Teams

4 stars Godley and Creme scaled back their ambition somewhat, after releasing the glorious mess of "Consequences" (which I still gave 4 stars despite the "mess", just for being so out-there), concentrating their energies instead on putting as many of their ideas as possible onto a single LP. The result was "L", probably the closest they've come to making a true progressive rock album. Yet, it's still likely to divide opinion as to its value, even among prog fans. Eclectic genius, or overly clever tunelessness?

Well frankly, I think it depends a lot on how much you like Frank Zappa. His pieces often lay out a theme in a recognizable, usually stylized manner (e.g. lounge music, reggae, hard rock, whatever), and then scatter little sonic banana peels all over the place, causing the listener to slip and slide around, never really sure what will happen next. That's what happens on this album a lot, and if that kind of thing bothers you, you probably won't like this. It says to the listener, "Ha Ha! Caught you getting in the groove there - here, have some 32nd note trills in 7/8 time!" If you hate that, stop reading right now.

Still here? Good, so am I.

If the Zappa comparison holds, then the 7 minute opening track "The Sporting Life" is their equivalent of "Brown Shoes Don't Make It" -- it begins and ends with a slow, jazzy lament, and the middle of the song is a long procession of quick changes in volume, tempo, and style, giving the impression of someone going to sleep, having a weird chaotic dream, and then waking up again. It's actually very well put together, but the herky jerkiness of it might be off putting at first. Next, "Sandwiches of You", ostensibly the "single" off the album, is just as strange lyrically and instrumentally - jarring little guitar bursts peek through the spare, brisk drum-centered arrangement, though it features a catchy/annoying refrain and a fairly normal song structure overall. "Art School Canteen" leads us into mellow territory, with gentle crooning by Kevin Godley (he has such a lovely voice, doesn't he?), poking fun at art school students. They name-drop Zappa in this song too. "Group Life" sounds more like what Godley and Creme would do on future albums -- artsy, experimental dance-oriented music. Not my favorite track, but it's welcome as a breather after the last three quirky tracks.

Side Two opens with one of the more shocking songs here, "Punchbag", a wildly unpredictable batch of constantly changing rhythms and themes, with only the abrasive refrain of "Fourth Form! Punchbag!" holding it together. The lyrics are sung from the point of view of a bullied school kid (perhaps making this a sequel to 10cc's "I Wanna Rule the World"?). For the non-sympathetic listener, this song is the most likely to annoy. For the sympathetic listener, though, it's pretty impressive. Next comes possibly my favorite tune on here, the completely bizarre "Foreign Accents". I guess it's their take on "T'Mershi Duween" (an early 70s complex Zappa instrumental). The backing track throughout is a light shuffle featuring handclaps and an inviting saxophone lick. Over this, at seemingly random intervals, a harsh series of unison Zappa-like rhythmic puzzles enter and exit at will. The effect is pretty hilarious, and somewhat disturbing (what were these guys on?). The last track is a 2 song medley of "Hit Factory/Business is Business" - a relative weak spot on the album, trying to conjure up the image of an actual factory (complete with industrial noises) "making hits", before leading into the weird quasi blues of "Business is Business" - again, fun idea, but just a little too self-consciously weird for its own good.

I'm extremely glad that Godley and Creme had the guts to leave the "sure thing" of 10cc and strike out on their own experimental path. They really are fantastic musicians with talent to spare, and here they made one of the more eclectic prog albums from 1978 you're likely to hear (at a time when many of the big-name prog bands were either on hiatus or streamlining their sound). But like a lot of Zappa's more silly works, sometimes you can have a little too much of a good thing - "too clever for their own good" has probably been writ in many reviews of this album. I'm wavering between a 3 and a 4 here. I'll round up to a 4, because I'm in the "weird is good" camp.

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 Consequences by GODLEY & CREME album cover Studio Album, 1977
3.90 | 13 ratings

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Consequences
Godley & Creme Prog Related

Review by HolyMoly
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl and Canterbury Teams

4 stars Kevin Godley and Lol Creme were songwriting partners in the very successful art-pop band10cc in the mid 1970s. The other songwriting partnership in that band, Graham Gouldman and Eric Stewart, were the more conventional poppers, while Godley and Creme generally steered the band into quirkier territory. In fact, while in 10cc, they invented an electronic device called the "Gizmo", a little box attached to the bridge end of a guitar with a little keyboard on it. The effect it produced was a "bowing" effect (as in violin bow), I guess similar in concept to the "E-bow" developed years later. Eventually they figured out how to make a wide range of sounds with this device, and decided in 1976 to make a demonstration single to help promote their invention. That was the original plan, anyway.

What eventually happened was that Godley and Creme left 10cc to devote their full energies to this, a vast three-record concept album based almost entirely on sounds produced by the Gizmo. Imagine what guts those guys had. The result is one of the most confounding, eccentric album packages ever conceived. But is it good? Yes and no.

The concept: Mother Nature reclaims the Earth with violent storms and other natural disasters, destroying everything in her path; such are the "Consequences" of Man's abuse of Earth's natural resources. Meanwhile an eccentric man (who has predicted all along that this would happen, and even correctly predicted the day it would happen) composes a Piano Concerto designed to pacify Mother Nature and thus save the human race. Meanwhile (and here's where things get really weird), there's a very long and somewhat tedious black comedy going on in this man's attic (?) between two lawyers and their clients who are in the process of divorce proceedings. In the end, this eccentric man (Mr. Blint) unleashes his grand Piano Concerto (all of side 6, as it happens), and presumably all ends well, since I'm still alive and writing this review right now.

The execution: The first record (sides one and two) is entirely instrumental, and entirely performed using the Gizmo. Musical sounds of every conceivable type are blended in exciting ways - horns, strings, wind effects, crashing waves, voices, a large rock festival being decimated by a storm, and so on, all produced by this device. Just read this excerpt from the producer's fascinating liner notes included in the set:

"Getting a guitar to sound like a saxophone seemed an impossible task, but it was achieved after three days in the studio. Each note of a guitar solo was recorded separately and faded in on the track so there would be no percussive element. The track was sent through a speaker and out of a rubber hose with perforated cigarette paper at the end. Enough pressure was displaced by forcing the sound through the holes of the cigarette paper to give the rasp of a saxophone"

Far out, huh? Good thing we now have samplers to do all that sort of thinking for us.

Sides three, four and five are dominated by a strange little comedic play written and performed by the talented comedian Peter Cook. This is where the dialogue concerning the divorce proceedings mentioned above happens. Low key pop songs (songs! the first time I actually mentioned songs in this review!) show up every now and then, but they seem secondary to the dry, pun-filled, not-quite-funny-but-not-quite-anything-else-either dialogue. This is the part of the album I'm most prone to skipping, mainly because the dialogue is really hard to digest unless you listen very closely (most of it is real quiet), and even then I still find myself scratching my head in confusion most of the time. Seems like they could have thought this part through a little better.

Finally, side six is "Blint's Tune (Movements 1-17)", in all its pretentious glory (I mean that in an endearing sense). A 14 minute Piano Concerto (still relying heavily on Gizmo sounds, but featuring real piano) that really is quite dramatic, enjoyable, and satisfying. I'm still left wondering what the point of all this was, and why we needed three records to do it, but it's as good a finale as I could have asked for.

When I first heard about this album a few years ago, I longed to own it, despite the fact that every review I read said it was terrible. It's just one of those oddities that exemplify the kind of anything-goes atmosphere that pervaded certain intellectual sectors in the 1970s - this was released, by the way, with full support by a major label, Polygram/Mercury, who thought they just might have a new "Tubular Bells" on their hands. Using primitive technology by today's standards, Godley and Creme aimed for nothing less than making an album with sounds never before heard on a record. And they pulled it off - barely. But I'll give this basically three-star album an extra star just for showing so much moxie.

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 Goodbye Blue Sky by GODLEY & CREME album cover Studio Album, 1988
1.76 | 6 ratings

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Goodbye Blue Sky
Godley & Creme Prog Related

Review by Music By Mail

1 stars Let's start with my raising eyebrows as to why this band is covered here, especially this album! Godley & Creme has as much to do with prog-rock as an elephant to Europe. So if the rating has to do with its relation to prog, I would say no stars at all! This album has N.O.T.H.I.N.G. to do with progressive rock, period.

But if you are a listener attracted to pop rock, you may find some interest here, even though it is more than obvious that the golden days are gone and the inspiration is on the thin side. Something that struck me is this focus on mouth harmonicas, present on each track AND on the front cover! What happened? Love at first sight? Old passion? Desperate attempt at something undone? The surprise is that I must admit they did achieve quite a few things in the recording of this - to my ears - horrible instrument, like bringing flanging or varying its sound. Some other valid points are also made in the vocal arrangements, though we've heard better from them on previous albums. The lyrics also bring some pertinence, like on the tunes "The Big Bang", "Air Force One" or "Crime & Punishment". Musically speaking, I didn't really find any memorable good melodies; only plain trist pop rock trickery, worn out clichés and what also appears to me like a worn out duo. Gone are the good times of L and this isn't a swan song that raises the flag high. But as a pop rock album, I would raise the rating to two stars, still wondering what the hell it has to do on this site, when hundreds of other bands or albums NOT presented here would have in fact a far better and legitimate reason to be indeed included!

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 L by GODLEY & CREME album cover Studio Album, 1978
3.85 | 20 ratings

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L
Godley & Creme Prog Related

Review by Dobermensch

4 stars I'd always imagined Godley and Creme as a pair of boring old middle aged fuddy-duddy's with no real originality. This was probably due to the saturation radio play of 'Cry' in '85 with its famous acid trip video of morphing mugshots. Well, I was only 15 at the time, so cut me a bit of slack guys...

Bah! How wrong I was. Ignored and ridiculed for years, I finally took the plunge 6 years ago with the gargantuan overindulgence of the ultra original prog-comedy 'Consequences' - recorded with foul mouthed funny man Peter Cook.

For many 'L' will sound at points just a wee bit too whacked out and off kilter to be taken seriously. It's a very unusual amalgamation of commercial and experimental playfulness.

'L' is basically an eccentric and clever deconstruction of pop music strung together in a state of the art studio. Like all their other early recordings the lyrics are inspired and very memorable which stick to the songs like glue. They're very unusual and mostly completely off-the-wall.

'L' sounds very at home in the Prog Archives with its rapid chopping and changing within tunes. It has very little wrong with it at all in fact. It may have a crumby front cover - but you'll remember it that's for sure. The only reason this album fails a five star maximum is due to the entirely instrumental 'Foreign Accents'. I've no gripes with it, it's just that I want more of those wonderful vocals and crazy lyrics. A brilliant and original album that has me quoting verses of madness at work as people look at me blankly.

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 Snack Attack by GODLEY & CREME album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1982
2.00 | 1 ratings

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Snack Attack
Godley & Creme Prog Related

Review by Evolver
Special Collaborator Crossover & JazzRock/Fusion Teams

— First review of this album —
2 stars This 45 rpm 12" single claims to be an extended version of Snack Attack frim "Ismism" (or "Snack Attack", depending on where you bought it). Honestly, I can't tell the difference between the two versions. But then again, it doesn't hold my interest long enough anyway. This mildly humorous rap piece is an homage to overeating. And not very funny either. But it has some good sax playing by Bimbo Acock.

The second side starts with Strange Apparatus (An Englishman In New York). This is a very good track, but can be found other, better albums.

The real reason to own this single is the rare track Wide Boy. This power pop song was originally only available as a 45, on a hard to find single, and on this release.

In more recent years, it has been included on G&C's compilation "Images".

That relegates this to 2 stars.

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 Ismism / Snack Attack by GODLEY & CREME album cover Studio Album, 1981
1.77 | 9 ratings

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Ismism / Snack Attack
Godley & Creme Prog Related

Review by Evolver
Special Collaborator Crossover & JazzRock/Fusion Teams

1 stars After splitting from 10CC after the album "How Dare You", Godley & Creme created some good albums, but wallowed in obscurity. At the time, the mindless music press was obsessed with disco & punk (both on their way out of fashion), and new wave. All of these were essentially simplistic forms of pop music, and very easy to produce (hence the major label trolls enforced the validation).

How did Godley & Creme respond? By noticing the up and coming rap music, and attempting to create their own version. Bad idea.

Most of this album is made up of G&C's version of rap. Each seems to be made up of one joke stretched out into five minutes or more. The end result is a bunch of track too tedious for repeat listenings.

Snack Attack is an homage to overeating. Joey's Camel, the best of the rap pieces tell a story of escape in old Egypt. The Problem is an absurd take on a word math problem. This meshes into Ready For Ralph, where ralph in this case means vomit. The Party is a depiction of the pretentious at a party. Not inspired. At least Bimbo Acock plays some nice sax solos here and there.

The rest of the songs are low grade Godley & Creme pop songs. Barely worth mentioning. The exception is Under Your Thumb, a poignant song about a woman's attempted escape from (I assume) an abusive lover.

One good song. One star.

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 Birds Of Prey by GODLEY & CREME album cover Studio Album, 1983
2.51 | 9 ratings

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Birds Of Prey
Godley & Creme Prog Related

Review by Evolver
Special Collaborator Crossover & JazzRock/Fusion Teams

2 stars After the pretty much failed experimental rap styling of "Ismism" (or "Snack Attack" in the U.S.), Godley & Creme went back to the quirky pop of their earlier albums (and their work in 10CC). The result here is something of a mixed bag. Their approach is still intriguing, but most of the songs are just a little bit empty.

My Body The Car starts the album off in a promising way. The song is a cappella, in a similar manner that Todd Rundgren used later, creating all the instrumental and rhythmic sounds with their mouths. Good premise and well done.

Worm And The Rattlesnake is a forgettable song, but is saved by a cool, rubbery bass line. Cat's Eyes is a more upbeat song, similar to what the duo was recording with 10CC a few years earlier. Good, not much prog.

Samson has some cool production, mostly with some oddly effected guitar fills. Save A Mountain For Me for some reason is the song that appears on their "History Mix" collection. It's a pretty boring song, with one joke about a singing chain gang. They should go back and listen to the real humor in Rubber Bullets.

Madame Guillotine has some of the better lyrics on the album, about a prisoner waiting for his execution. But the music is repetitious, and goes nowhere. Woodwork has the first overt appearance by the duo's Gizmo (a device that mechanically rubs guitar strings like a violin bow), and that gives the piece a more orchestral sound. An unimaginative electronic drum track holds the song back, however.

Twisted Nerve has synth work that reminds me a bit of Eno. The dry delivery of Kevin Godley's vocals falttens the song a bit. Out In The Cold is actually a good ending. Eerie music and minor key processed vocals come together to make this the best track on this record.

Al in all, the production on this album, like any Godley & Creme album, is spectacular. It's the compositions that mostly fall flat. 2.5 stars.

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 Freeze Frame by GODLEY & CREME album cover Studio Album, 1979
3.26 | 19 ratings

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Freeze Frame
Godley & Creme Prog Related

Review by b_olariu
Prog Reviewer

3 stars 3.5 realy

Kevin Godley and Lawrance Creme are well known musicians to prog connaisseurs, they being part of 10CC some years. Also they are known by developing an instrument that could replicate string arrangements and sounds named by them Gizmo, this instrument can be attached tot he guitar and can create polyphonic sounds. Quite intristing , because this instrument was used on some pieces from 10CC period and more and more used as a solo musicians after departute from 10CC. Third album under Godley and Creme name, released in 1979 and named Freeze frame, is a an original album, at least to me. I never or almost not many times had the chance to listen to such diverse and very strange and original in same time album lately. The gizmo, sax , keybords are very strong here, quite original if you ask me, for that period when everybody was or disco or punk, these two guys make a diffrence in musical market. The strong and elegant voice of Godley interluded very well with Creme's instrumental sections creating some intristing arrangements, not realy pop, not realy very progressive, always bordering, maybe clouse to art pop with prog elements. Helped on some pieces by famous Phil Manzanera and even Paul McCartney apeared on last track as backing vocals. O course the hit from this album was An Englishman in New York , but to me besides this great tune, I Pity Inanimate Objects and title track are simply great, quite unusual music I listen from what I listen every day, great and very intristing in the end. So, I don't know if this is among their best, maybe to some fans is less intristing then previous one, but to me is on same level. Not a masterpiece but a very worthy album even if you are not familiar with this kind of aproach to music, can easy trace the excelent moments of these two musicicns. 3.5 is best rate for this album.

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 Freeze Frame by GODLEY & CREME album cover Studio Album, 1979
3.26 | 19 ratings

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Freeze Frame
Godley & Creme Prog Related

Review by snobb
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars Previous G & C album "L" was really great. Unhappily, with this release duo turned more to pop direction (even if again their pop is different from what you could expect).

This album is more down tempo, less experimental, without any avant elements, but with accent on multi layered sound. As a result, music there sounds very similar to 10 CC releases of similar time. Duo's songwriting abilities are still strong enough there, some you can hear nice melody here and there. Vocals harmonies are usual for them as well. But in all, album sounds a bit faceless, without strong songs and any direction.

Still not so bad listening ( mostly because even from very average material musicians know how to make quality music). But far not so interesting as previous one. Participation of Phil Manzanera and Paul McCartney (on back-vocals on one song) doesn't help much.

My rating is 2,5, rounded to 3.

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