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Talking Heads - Remain In Light CD (album) cover


Talking Heads


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4.19 | 233 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
3 stars 3.5 stars really!!!

good pop/rock band , but absolutely NOTHING PROG, no matter what some would have you believe !!!

Fourth album for our Speaking Heads, and often pointed by fans as their peak (I beg to differ, but it was also the one that put TH on my "positive" radar), and again a fairly adventuresome album (exploring African rhythms) that was somewhat groundbreaking for the pop scene, but nothing all that new on the jazz scene. Released on the decade's turn with a screwed-up digital face artwork (the back cover is nicer with those warplanes over mountains) and produced by Brian Eno

The opening side is actually quite fine and filled with tracks that got a fair bit of airwaves exposure, so most of the now-late 30's music-heads should be familiar with. Tracks like Crosseyed, Lifetime, Curve and Punches are all fairly lengthy (all things relative considered the "prog" context) and repetitive with those African rhythms sprawled all over them, courtesy of the great drummer Harrison and Tina Weymouth's pedestrian bass. Some of those guitar wails will find themselves transposed on Crimson albums like Discipline, namely the Elephant Talk wails. The flipside is not quite as successful, but still create the odd surprise, as a lot of fans spun it much less than its reverse. It's still quite worthy and adventurous, but generally slower and a tad darker (Overload)

The deluxe double-disc remastered version includes a bunch of unfinished (and still instrumental) studio tracks from the album sessions, the first being the openly-influenced Fela's (Kuti) Riff, all of them well in the line of the album and nothing shocking with the disc's progress. The second disc a mixed audio/video DVD, where the album gets a 5.1 audio mix and two concert RIL album pieces with the usual extended line-up (with ex-Zappa and future-Crimson Adrian Belew), showing excellent on-stage presence and fun-filled exhibition. As much as RIL is a good (sometimes brilliant) pop album that might have been slightly groundbreaking on the pop music front, I still wouldn't call this music "prog" and barely progressive. Doesn't stop me from liking it nonetheless, though.

Sean Trane | 3/5 |


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