Squeeze, PLAY

Squeeze was one of the leaders of the '80s new wave music movement -- but how about their music in the '90s? The Squeeze album Play (get it? "Squeeze play?" yeah, forced cleverness, like the play in the inside notes) is an alright album, consistently pleasant but seldom outstanding.

Anyone who's heard Squeeze before will recognize both Glenn Tilbrook's voice and the music from the rest of the band. Play is pretty mellow, never cutting loose but also seldom allowing its slower songs to resist becoming upbeat pop; the exception is "Walk a Straight Line," my favorite song off the album.

Play suffers from some frequently stupid lyrics ("The truth is not my middle name," "Her nails were long and sharp/but she didn't play the harp") and music that sounds like it's all auditioning for top 40 radio. Play is out of print; I didn't mind picking up my used copy, but I won't be listening to it often either.

Overall grade: C

Reviewed by James Lynch

1 comment:

mockstar said...

OK, so long as we acknowledge that Squeeze did create some of the greatest smart pop songs of the post-Beatles school: Tempted, Black Coffee In Bed, Up The Junction, Cool For Cats, Hourglass, Annie Get Your Gun, Another Nail In My Heart, Goodbye Girl, and the Sublime Is That Love.

The songwriting team of Difford & Tilbrook are so talented, and imbued a sly sense of humor and pathos in their best work.

I LIKE the line about the sharp fingers that don't play harp.