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Review of Adrian Belew's "Here"

Date Submitted: 5-May-94
Submitted By: Bill Moxim (bmoxim at epi dot soph dot uab dot edu)

Subject: New Belew Review

Well I went ahead and picked up Adrian's new disc "Here" last night. Now I've never been very good at reviewing a disc, I suppose because I feel my opinions are just my own and that I wouldn't want others to judge theirs by mine, as well as the fact that I'm *not* really a lyric person, I judge a song for the most part by its musical content - BUT - here's my two cents worth... I'm sure ther'll be plenty that differ...

Caroline Records (with an unusual oval logo), 1748-2 (US)
Tracks: May 1, 1990 / I See You / Survival In The Wild / Fly / Never Enough / Peace On Earth / Burned By The Fire We Make / Dream Life / Here / Brave New World / Futurevision / Postcard From Holland / ???

It's a relatively SHORT album, but that's usually the case with him.

From the very beginning I felt I was hearing QUITE a lot of Beatles influences - but since we already know he's quite the fan, I tried to ignore that as a reference. Yet the first four tracks continually reminded me of "Revolver" and I could no longer ignore it. He's really gotten into the backwards guitar solo's. I believe it was SURVIVAL IN THE WILD that seemed a lot like "Rain" with the bass line. Great so far! Then... Nirvana! NEVER ENOUGH, I couldn't help thinking about Kurt Cobain throughout the tune - and at the end he states "that's enough".

PEACE ON EARTH, typical Belew style. Kinda "Rail Song"-ish with vocals. BURNED BY THE FIRE WE MAKE, sort of Inner Revolution-style tune. It's ok, but I don't have much of an opinion on it. DREAM LIFE is rather slow, quite pleasant with some very nice chord changes. HERE sounds like Martin Denny (remember him?) in the 90's with some psychedelic vocals and guitar, a tripped out tune, very cool. BRAVE NEW WORLD is kinda standard Belew style, it's ok, not much to say on that one. FUTUREVISION is great! Has definately some "The Ideal Woman" guitar work on it. It's heavy, it's funky, and it really moves. The end of it (not similar) reminded me of ELO from the "Time" album period. POSTCARD FROM HOLLAND is sorta slow and once again reminded me of the Beatles in a small way from the Sgt. Pepper era. But THEN a very unusual suprise...! Although the disc only lists twelve tracks, my player stated 13. Ok, well, it seems to be a thing these days with Nirvana's suprise track on the original release of "Nevermind", and Cracker's crazy 'skip a few - play some more - skip a few more' track lineup, but this one is different. It STOPPED (or should I say 'paused') rather abruptly on track 12 at 1:21. Did not continue. I couldn't skip forward, I couldn't scan-forward. All I could do was either skip backward or physically program in track 13 to hear what remained on the disc, yet if you program track 12 to play and pulled up the remainig time on track 12 it said 2:50 (it stops at 1:29, but when it does it jumps to 1:46 remaining) go figure... So anyway, I program track 13 to play. It's some rather spacey guitar work with 'Frippertronic-esque' loops in the background. Lasts about a minute forty-six. Interesting... so what's up with Crimson!! This could be a VERY nice venture here!

MY opinion in all - this is one of the BEST things I've heard from Belew since 'Lone Rhino'! I've loved them all, but "Twang Bar" and "Lone Rhino" were always my favourites. I liked "Inner Revolution" better than "Young Lions", although I have nothing against that one, and "Mr. Music Head" for some reason seems to stand alone in a way. I REALLY *like* this album a lot. Granted I only first listened to it about 20 minutes ago, but I think it'll stick with me. BUY IT. It's really intrigued me with what we're about to see with the new Crimso next YEAR :(

I would say for a quick sampling of this disc, program tracks 9 11 3 5 8 13 in that order. That's just a thought. I like it...

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