Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Album of the Day

Quiet Life, by Japan (1980): I bought this album for one reason - I knew that keyboardist/synthesist Richard Barbieri, of Porcupine Tree (and, finally, a solo career) fame had been in it. I didn't really know what they might sound like, but was curious what kind of work he was doing back in the day. Turns out, some pretty cool stuff, at least in spots. Musically, this album makes me think of an artier and more earnest Duran Duran, particularly the more up tempo stuff. The slower stuff, however, has some really cool ambiance and slow grooves. Plus, the cover of Velvet Underground's "All Tomorrow's Parties" is very good. All in all, I'd be up for another Japan album, if I ever come across one.

1 comment:

Spike Nesmith said...

Wow, Japan. Holy crap! There's a band I haven't thought about for a *very* long time!

My first brush came in 80/81 or so, when they released a cover of Smokey Robinson's "I Second That Emotion". The follow-up, "Ghosts", (from the "Tin Drum" album) I didn't warm to as much as a shortie, but listening to it again as an adult, there's a very nice, noirish undercurrent that my younger ears didn't pick up on.

Here's "I Second That Emotion" which, imho, still stands up as a very decent cover even now: