Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Church - The Blurred Crusade

The Blurred Crusade (1982) ***

If you're looking for The Generic Church Album, seek ye no further.  Adding a Byrdsey jangle to the jittery power-paisley formula introduced on their debut, for better or worse all the trademark elements of the Church sound were firmly in place by their sophomore slump:  Steve Kilbey's dry, laconic vocals meshing with the colorfully chiming, snakey twin-lead guitar interplay of Willson-Piper and Koppes.  "When You Were Mine," is the pick of the litter here, a fine tension-building, anthemic single to cherrypick for the inevitable best-of comp.  Marty Willson-Piper slides in one of his compositions, "Field of Mars," and "You Took," stretches on for an epic seven minutes without doing much more than sound like a really long Church song, and pretty soon I find myself running out of interesting things to say about this record.  It's a fine, extremely typical Church album that will please the fans and bore the dulldroms out of the unconverted.  The hooks are too dulled this time out for many of the songs to stand out as individually memorable, but the brite, Byrsdey sound and atmosphere make for a pleasant overall album listen.  Rather samey in sound, but it's an inoffensive saminess.  Or boring, depending on where your ears stand.  You shell out your shekels and takes your chances.

Great cover, though.

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