Saturday, February 8, 2014
Missing Persons - Rhyme & Reason
Side one is ushered in by the pounding beats of “The Closer That You Get”, a song about working towards a goal even when it seems like you might fail.
“Give”, the first single, stalled at number 67 on the US Billboard Hot 100. I like guitar and bass on this one as they lay down a funky groove.
“Now Is the Time (For Love)”, with strong synths and percussion, has a good mid-tempo dance beat to it. I like the repeated cascading keyboard hook.
“Surrender Your Heart” was released as the third single; its video found itself in heavy rotation on MTV. Dale Bozzio’s vocals on this one are easily the better of those on side one so far; I like how the echoing effect is used to add to the longing feelings.
“Clandestine People” a frenzied ode to people who keep secrets, was the B-side to the first single.
Side two starts with “Right Now”, the album‘s second single. The chorus has a catchy hook to it.
"All Fall Down" bobs along on a mid-tempo wave of music, giving the sense of motion yet really going hardly anywhere.
"Racing Against Time", the B-side to the second single, is a mix for me. The time aspect is represented well by the musical queues that remind me of ancient Egypt and the far-flung future. But, for me, it falls slightly short on the urgency that the racing part implies.
From the opening percussion, I expected "Waiting For a Million Years" to go a different direction than it did. The ending arrangement is lovely but the whole thing just kind of leaves me a little cold and uncaring. From Dale's vocals, it seems as if she has gotten tired after "waiting" for so long.
"If Only For the Moment" closes out the record with a song that soars on cosmic waves musically. There are a lot of layers of keyboards going on here.
From 1984, I was only familiar with the singles from Rhyme & Reason; this review was the first time I had heard the entire album. And I can see why this one failed to attract as big of an audience as their earlier efforts. There is a very distinct change in direction going on here; some work for me and some do not. I get that Missing Persons wanted to branch out and not repeat their earlier successes. However, I think it was too far a leap and thus lost a lot of the audience they had built.
For their self-titled debut EP from 1982, click here.
For 1982’s Spring Session M, click here.