A Flock Of Seagulls: Listen (Jive HIP4)

Pigeon English

THIS BUNCH took the biscuit from Gary Numan a while back and became the easiest target for abuse around until the GooGoos came along. Credit where it’s due — they’ve beavered away, making it in the States, mainly ‘cos they’re heard but not seen. AFOS are no Durans, they won’t be occupying precious Limahl or LeBon wall space, so they’ll never be mega-pop here. This album won’t help either.

It starts off well with ‘Wishing’, its imploring little melody sounding genuinely sweet, and ‘Nightmares’ being gently unsettling. They’re more relaxed, not half as self-conscious as they once were, churning out essentially simple melodies with a nice introspective touch the like of which Dep Mod would be proud.

Things get worse when the lyrics descend into techno-sham and the music becomes a pale imitation of Red Noise. Paul Reynolds starts playing heavy metal guitar and Mike Score gets moody, broody and tediously tinny. Disaster is narrowly avoided by the inclusion of the Nelson-produced ‘It’s Not Me Talking’, which effervesces sufficiently to wake you up again.

Ho hum, just when I thought it might be safe to recommend them, too. Tape Side One if you can. +++

© Betty PageRecord Mirror, 30 April 1983

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