Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Nazareth - The Catch

Next month marks the thirtieth anniversary of The Catch, the fifteenth studio album from the Scottish rock band Nazareth. This 1984 release climbed to number 60 in Germany and number 12 in Norway.

Side one begins with “Party Down”, which was released as the second single. The first minute of the track lays out a slinky stomp of a rhythm that carries the entire tune.

Next up is a cover of the Rolling Stones‘ 1967 hit “Ruby Tuesday”, a favorite of mine. Nazareth released their version as the first single from the album; I actually liked their ethereal spin on this album-rock classic.

I like how the first verse of “Last Exit Brooklyn” is backed entirely by a simple, repeated guitar riff; it gives the song a sense of urgency. The rest of the band then adds in layers. Overall, the song reminds me of the Police.

This slow down with the gentle lull of the ballad “Moondance”.

“Love of Freedom” opens with an Edge-like guitar. One can see some U2 influence in the entire track, from the music to the political lyrics.

Side two opens with “This Month’s Messiah”, an all-out heavy rocker about a quest for enlightenment. It is a strong track, I found myself quickly engulfed by it.

“You Don’t Believe In Us”, a song about lack of support, too has a Police-like quality to it musically. Clocking in at over six and a half minutes, it is the longest track on the record.

The B-side to the first single was “Sweetheart Tree”, a roadhouse blues song about the unpredictable nature of love and dating.

The album closes with a cover “Road to Nowhere”, a song written by Gerry Goffin and Carole King and recorded in 1969 by the Scottish pop band White Trash. Nazareth does a great job remaining this one for an 80’s audience. It also speaks to the timelessness of the song itself that it could transcend across the decades.

I had to dig around the Internet to hear the various tracks on this album (finally settling in to my last resort Grooveshark), but the hunt was worth it. I enjoyed The Catch quite a bit; it very much had that mid-80‘s rock sound which I enjoyed during college through out it. It is a shame though that this one apparently is only available on import CD and is not available from any of the digital purchase or streaming sites. I so would have snapped it up on an impulse buy.

For more discussion of the music by Nazareth, click here.

No comments: