|Cheap Trick Rockford||Big 3|
I know I'm a week or two late with this review, but as the album was only released officially the week before last, I think I can still get away with it.|
The one advantage of running a little late is the benefit of reading other opinions and hearing from readers about an album.
While I'm not one to ever change my view based on what others think, it is nice to know that I am on the same wavelength as it appears I am with this release.
From all reports to date, Cheap Trick has turned in their best album in years. Some are saying the very best since the late 70s, but as I am still a great fan of some of those gems from the 80s, so I'll agree to a point and name Rockford as the band's best album since the brilliant commercial rock of Lap Of Luxury.
On the band's last couple of studio albums, an attempt has been made to cover all aspects of their diverse career, with an equally diverse set of songs featured.
Perhaps the band was trying too hard to please everyone.
The last album Special One was especially disappointing, with some weak songs played with little conviction. A lot more time was taken putting this album together and it seems the guys also placed far less pressure on themselves.
When bands can afford to give themselves such creative room, I think the results always speak for themselves. That is very much the case here, as Rockford not only features the best set of songs from the band in a long long time, it also rocks more than they have in some time!
The guys sound in vintage form and as melodic as ever, as power pop anthems dominate the album, filled with hooks galore.
Rockford features all the essential Cheap Trick ingredients, starting with those needed driving rockers, such as Welcome To The World, Give It Away and the riff driven Come On Come On Come On.
Melodic rock anthems appear in the form of Perfect Stranger and the very Lap Of Luxury-ish pop/rock of If It Takes A Lifetime and This Time You Got It.
Of course, no Trick album would be complete without a tip of the hat to the ultimate power pop band The Beatles. The retro pop ballad O Claire fulfills that obligation as does the more uptempo pop rocker Dream The Night Away.
The more laid back and reflective All Those Years is a pleasant tune that breaks the tempo up a little late in the album.
Outside the box a little is the quirky as hell, but equally catchy rocker One More and the heavier groove of Decaf, which closes the album in style.
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