Album Reviews

Music You Don't Know You Like Yet

RINGO STARR

2012

2012-02-15

Nick's Picks: 01 Anthem; 05 Rock Island Line; 07 Wonderful; 08 In Liverpool

FCC ALERT: Clean as the Liverpool air (note – American English translation of track 01 would make this an FCC banned cut)

Review by Steven "Nick" Nickelson of Ringo Starr 2012 :

The very first cut on this latest offering from Ringo Starr (“Anthem”) seems to hark back to early Beatles music (from Rubber Soul and Sergeant Peppers), with an emphasis on heavy back-beat, jangly sounds, and group singing (not necessarily focusing on harmonies, per Se). I have to say that the rhythm is catchy, though. The second cut (“Wings”) carries on the same pace, jangly percussion, and group singing; however, this time we get a short guitar solo. “Think It Over” starts off, once again, eerily like something from Yellow Submarine (or Sgt. Pepper), and with a catchy beat. I'm starting to get a feeling that some of the instruments used in the making of this cd were previously used by the Beatles. (Just a niggling little feeling I get – that's all). Overall, the percussion seems to take the lead (as one would expect of Ringo); however, considering the rock star (and I mean genuine) talent he has for this offering, I think he needs to let the percussion take a backseat. We get too little of the outstanding talent shining through – which (IMHO) is a shame. I do think the songwriting and lyrics are good (excepting “Samba”) and the production is top-notch. “Rock Island Line” is a genuine toe-tapper, and head-shaker (lyrics?). “Step Lightly” would sound fantastic if the lead were taken by Bruce Sugar, and whoever is playing the mellotron – and less emphasis on drums. It's a shame that we couldn't hear more from Kenny Wayne Shepherd on “Wonderful”, but it was enough to make it a Nick's Pick. The string arrangement on the next cut (“In Liverpool”) really sets this song apart, as well as the contributions of Dave Stewart. Joe Walsh, as usual, is Joe Walsh on the last track (“Slow Down”), with his great guitar licks and songwriting chops. All in all, not a bad cd. I don't know that I would buy it, but I would go to the concert just to see all the great musicians in one place. And that's my two nickels' worth..............Nick

ARTIST BIO:

a It's Ringo Starr. Need I say more?

The Musicians:

・ Ringo Starr – songwriter(except3, 5) , vocals, drums, percussion, keyboards, backing vocals

・ Steve Dudas – guitar, bass

・ Bruce Sugar – keyboards, piano, synth horns, horn arrangement, organ,

・ Amy Keys, Kelly Moneymaker – backing vocals

・ Joe Walsh – songwriter (9), guitar (2,9)

・ Dave Stewart – songwriter (8) strings

・ Kenny Wayne Shepherd – guitar (5,7)

・ Benmont Tench – organ, piano

・ Charlie Haden – bass (3)

・ Richard Page – backing vocals (3)

・ VanDyke Parks – Keyboards, Accordion, String Arrangement (4)

・ Matt Kartsonis – mandolin (4)

・ Don Was – bass (5,6)

・ Edgar Winter – sax (5), organ (9)

・ Michael Bradford – bass (8)

・ Ann Marie Calhoun – violin (8)

The Songs:

1. Anthem

2. Wings

3. Think It Over

4. Samba

5. Rock Island Line

6. Step Lightly

7. Wonderful

8. In Liverpool

9. Slow Down

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Compiled by the WYCE Journalism Club

The opinions expressed in these reviews are those of the individual volunteers that submitted the article and do not necessarily reflect the views of WYCE or GRCMC; nor its staff, donors, or affiliates.