2/23/2009

Cheap Trick - Next Position Please (1983) (1990)

Cheap Trick - Next Position Please (1983) (1990)

On VH1's countdown of the 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock (Cheap Trick landed at #25), respected sound engineer and recent CT producer Rob Albini described the group's music as having "moments of rage and ugliness and power...but there are also things about it that are genuinely very pretty and elegant." This album is their "elegant" side (or as elegant as a blistering power-pop band can get anyway).
Like all of their string of commercially-failed 80s albums, "Next Position Please" is a real gem, and a worthwhile reward for anyone who gives panned albums a chance. Renowned pop producing expert Todd Rundgren was brought on board to man the switches, a move that many say is to be given credit for the album's accessibility. On Cheap Trick's previous "failed" album, "One On One," there were subtle hints that their commercial slide was interfering with the confidence in their music, but that's certainly not the case with "Next Position Please." Cheap Trick sounds determined and focused, despite what shows up in many CT bios. The title track sounds like it was written during the band's glory days of the late 70s, and Rundgren's glossy production actually works on 'Y.O.Y.O.Y.', 'I Can't Take It' (Trick at their most sincere), and the album's best track, 'I Don't Love Here Anymore' (which is complete with Beatles-like backing vocals). It's also obvious that the group were trying to regain a younger, modern audience with songs like 'You Talk To Much' and 'Heaven's Falling.' A wildly left-center version of 'Dancing the Night Away' meanwhile, can be seen as only Cheap Trick being their erratic, oddball selves.
Many complain that "Next Position Please" is much too pop-oriented to sound like vintage Cheap Trick; but whoever thinks that can compare this record to their 1988 'comeback' "Lap of Luxury," an album the band members themselves criticize, in which the group was forced to bring in outside songwriters. So in that light, "Next Position Please" is the more Cheap Trick-sounding substitute for "Lap of Luxury." As for this album's commercial stance, the next position for Cheap Trick would be a disappointing peak at number 61...B. Sturguess

320 @
117 MB

Tracklist:

01. I Can't Take It 3:28
02. Borderline 3:34
03. I Don't Love Her Anymore 3:51
04. Next Position Please 2:51
05. Younger Girls 3:14
06. Dancing The Night Away 4:58
07. You Talk Too Much 1:55
08. 3-D 3:37
09. You Say Jump 2:06
10. Y.O.Y.O.Y. 5:54
11. Won't Take No For An Answer 3:13
12. Heaven's Falling 3:48
13. Invaders Of The Heart 4:00
14. Don't Make Our Love A Crime 3:45

4 comments:

Sean said...

Cheap Trick is about the most underrated band I can think of. Killer songwriting in the vein of Big Star/The Move/The Who, one of the best lead singers of all time (maybe even the best), great musicianship and an ironic sense of humor. Yet they're largely dismissed today by "serious" rock fans.
So what's up with the no comments on your blog? People obviously visit here. I feel weird being the only one filling in these spaces.

Anonymous said...

On the internet as in real life, most people would be better off remaining silent and thought to be fools, than to comment and remove all doubt.

That said, a simple "thanks" never hurts.


BTW Samantha, this link is dead. But thanks for all your work on this blog!

Anonymous said...

"One On One", "Next Position Please", "Standing On The Edge" and "The Doctor" are cruelly underrated though i think they're much better conceived than the following ones....! for me, Cheap Trick was 10 years of excellent rock'n'roll LPs (from '76 to '86).

Anonymous said...

Next Position Please is a great album, not enough people realize it! And Cheap Trick is one of the greatest bands ever - when they finally DO get inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, I half expect them to say "Thanks, but no thanks" and give a big middle finger salute. Robin Zander has the most incredible rock voice of all time. Thanks for the great batch of music!