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Golden Earring - The Hole CD (album) cover


Golden Earring


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2.62 | 17 ratings

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2 stars Golden Earring had just had their 2nd break with the song "Twilight Zone" and the album "Cut", their first break coming with "Radar Love" from "Moontan". The thing that both songs had in common was that they both had bass heavy riffs that made them both easy to rock out to and fun to listen to. The problem is, both times the band tried so hard to capitalize on that sound that they ended up overdoing it twice. Not only that, but they took everything progressive out of their music trying to lean more toward popular music. History repeated itself for the band almost step for step. Both albums responsible for the hits were huge sellers in North America and the following albums seen the popularity slack off as the band and the record label worked on lowering the standard and quality of the songwriting and musicianship.

"The Hole" is the 2nd album after the release of "Cut", and you can tell they were working hard to not have history repeat itself. The music on this album is mostly formulated off of their successful songs. The sound has that dark, criminal undertone to it through almost every song on this album. They had a pattern and they tried to follow it on each song to the point that, other than maybe "They Dance", the pattern gets worn thinner and thinner with each song that follows. Plus, each song is kept down to a radio-friendly time limitation, so there really is not much time to be inventive, progressive or to even put down a decent jam. "Quiet Eyes" is the track that is the obvious attempt at a single, but it lacks any hook whatsoever and, except for the repetitive chorus, is not very memorable. By the time the 3rd track "Save the Best for Later" comes around, you already know what the pattern is going to be for the rest of the album, and, in the end, you have a bunch of songs that sound pretty much like they were cut with the same pattern.

"Have a Heart" actually has an interesting bass line that could have been utilized better, but the song is too short and the singing never stops. The synth "hits" also date the track making it sound outdated. The guitar break in the middle sounds like it could have gone somewhere, but there is no time for that on this album, and it ends way too soon. Things continue in a downward spiral when "Love in Motion" sounds like an attempt to bring back disco with some really bad brass filler, even in 1986. The music continues in the same vein through the remainder of the album, sounding out of date even for the year it was released.

The band would at least continue to see success in Europe for a while longer, but this would be the last time the band would break the top 200 in America. People weren't going to give them another chance after this album, even if they could manage to pull off a great album again. Of course, their own country never gave up on them, but eventually, the rest of the world would. Not only did they wear out a great thing but they tried to water it down with mediocre songs cut from the same cloth. The band did take a short hiatus after this album during which the two frontmen Hay and Kooeymans each put out solo albums, but soon returned trying to repeat their success a 3rd time. But, as the title of the album "The Hole" suggests, the band was stuck in a hole they could never climb out of.

TCat | 2/5 |


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