Sunday, May 1, 2011

Tim Feehan - S/T (1987)

A singer/songwriter from Canada with a fantastic voice who was taken under the wing of David Foster (Chicago) after some initial success, Tim Feehan is one of those quintessential 80's guys who did his thing so well during his brief shot in the spotlight that he makes pretty much everyone else in his radio friendly corner of the genre spectrum seem utterly irrelevant in comparison. Because when it comes to cheesy, L.A. sounding pop-rock, you can't get any better than this 1987 self-titled.

Part of why this stuff works is a consistent, catchy execution of songcraft coupled with some punchy production values. Opening cut 'Where's The Fire', for example, is a master stroke of late 80's commercial rock, careening forward at high speed with an excellent drum machine led crunch and a memorable-as-fuck chorus that makes it an anthem beyond anthems for its era. It doesn't hurt that it's the main theme from cult classic The Wraith either. On top of that monster, the ballads have some kick as well: 'Listen To The Heartbeat' is an exercise in Westcoast perfection, while 'Loveline' is the kind of atmosphere-laden hit Mr. Mister wanted to write after 1985 but never quite managed to cut.

Beyond the rather solid songwriting though, Feehan's voice itself is top stuff, and possibly the best of the crop of singer-songwriter "rock stars" who tried to storm the FM market between '79 and '90: warm, expressive, and possessed of more range and power than you'd expect from some Canadian pretty boy.

Not every song here's a keeper, but the ones that are count among the best material ever written and performed within the context of "cock rock". Thus, a heartily recommended record...and then some.

Listen Here - "Read Between The Lines"

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