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Eat To The Beat

  out of 4 Music Review: Eat To The Beat

Artist: Blondie
Genre: Rock
Release Date: September 2001

Review by Keith "MuzikMan" Hannaleck
No rating supplied

Blondie's fourth album "Eat To The Beat" was an attempt to recreate the formula of the blockbuster release "Parallel Lines." Mike Chapman candidly explains what was happening during the recording of this album in the liner notes. There was far too much fighting and partying going on to find any kind of consistency in the recording process. They were successful regardless of the group pushing the fragile emotionally charged roller coaster that they were all riding. The ride would eventually end, but not yet. Like many great rock groups before them Blondie used that fire and emotion to fuel their music.

There were some really great songs on this album, as there were on every album that they made. Once again they abandoned what had made them so successful on their previous album. 'Dreaming' was their answer to 'Heart Of Glass.' Although its one of my very favorite tunes, it doesn't measure up to the punch and pop of "Parallel Lines." It tells the story of how Deborah Harry was a waitress and how Chris Stein found her and took her away to join his group. 'Union City Blue' was another all out rock-pop dynamo that was radio ready and set to climb the charts. Once again because of their inability to maintain the energy from the previous album, Blondie lost ground here in the U.S. and remained extremely popular overseas, particularly in the U.K. They just couldn't put together two consecutive albums that kept us under a spell here in the U.S. 'Atomic' and 'Eat To The Beat' were the other two songs that enjoyed popularity regardless of dipping sales, and I must say that they sound simply fantastic on this remastered version. In fact, out of all four albums I have heard thus far, this one has the best sound. This is not to say the others didn't have great sound, they did, I just recognized a slight difference in the sonics on this recording. The bonus tracks are always a real treat. They cover Bowie's 'Heroes', and do pretty good version of it. 'Seven Rooms Of Gloom' was very good; 'Die Young Stay Pretty' was brilliant in the studio and grand live. The only throw away is Johnny Cash's 'Ring Of Fire.' That song really shouldn't have been covered by anyone that played music like they did. Leaving songs like that to the country folks is probably the best thing that any artists outside of that genre could do. I am sure Johnny Cash would agree.

This was another enjoyable blast from the past for me and it made me realize just how many wonderful songs that Blondie made that I really have enjoyed over the years. This CD is yet another indispensable addition to your rock and roll collection and a very important link to the career of a memorable group.

1. Dreaming (Harry/Stein) - 3:08
2. The Hardest Part (Harry/Stein) - 3:42
3. Union City Blue (Harrison/Harry) - 3:21
4. Shayla (Stein) - 3:58
5. Eat to the Beat (Harrison/Harry) - 2:40
6. Accidents Never Happen (Destri) - 4:15
7. Die Young Stay Pretty (Harry/Stein) - 3:34
8. Slow Motion (Davis/Destri) - 3:28
9. Atomic (Destri/Harry) - 4:40
10. Sound-A-Sleep (Harry/Stein) - 4:18
11. Victor (Harry/Infante) - 3:19
12. Living in the Real World (Destri) - 2:53
13. Die Young Stay Pretty- Recorded Live (BBC 12/31/79) in Glasgow, Scotland at the Apollo Theater (Harry/Stein) - 3:27
14. Seven Rooms of Gloom-Recorded Live (BBC 12/31/79)) in Glasgow, Scotland at the Apollo Theater (Dozier/Holland/Holland) - 2:48
15. Heroes-Recorded Live 1/12/80 at The Hammersmith Odeon, UK- (Bowie/Eno) - 6:19
16. Ring of Fire- Live- (Carter/Kilgore) - 3:30



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