90551-1 Desire Caught By The Tail
Produced by Adrian Belew
Released on 1986
no chart information
Find it at GEMM
90551-1 cover  

A n album of (mostly) guitar instrumentals, Desire Caught By The Tail still has something to say... to Belewís record company (Island), which one assumes would involve his contract, a certain amount of unguent and a very dark place. At least thatís the facet Iím facing at the moment, having previously captured a silhouette of Desire as Belewís communing with the noncommercial artistry of Frank Zappa or said communion falling miserably short of his idol at the altar. Of course an album looks different depending on the route you took to get there: on bended knee in deference to the guitaristís Crimson canon, on a lark after netting the tuneful Lone Rhino, maybe in pursuit of one more soiled black napkin to add to your monument of great mastubatory guitar moments. Criticism that captures all three aspects is confusing (however safe), so better to make a conglomerate of all the different things youíve heard about this album. Leave the critics to do their job: find one aspect and paint the hell out of it. Let the reader piece them together. And so the side I see is Belew writing a huge FU to Island, making the most unlistenable music he could conjure without giving the game away. He hasnít made anything this inscrutably awful since and he sure didnít make anything this bad before Desire, leaving this anomaly to look suspiciously like a very thoughtful raspberry. If youíre wondering what the music actually sounds like (and whether or not youíll like it), look to the artist on the other side, the one with the dirty knees. I came here looking for rhino, and the only thing worth shooting in this wasteland is the listener.

90551-1 back cover
90551-1 back cover


  1. TANGO ZEBRA    (Adrian Belew)    7:30
  2. LAUGHING MAN    (Adrian Belew)    5:28
  3. THE GYPSY ZURNA    (Adrian Belew)    3:03
  4. PORTRAIT OF MARGARET    (Adrian Belew)    4:00
  5. BEACH CREATURES DANCING LIKE CRANES    (Adrian Belew)    3:28
  6. AT THE SEASIDE CAFE    (Adrian Belew)    1:50
  7. GUERNICA    (Adrian Belew)    2:00
  8. "Z"    (Adrian Belew)    5:40


ADRIAN BELEW -- guitar, percussion
Rich Denhart -- engineer
Stan Hertzman -- executive producer
Margaret Belew -- painting

US 1986 Island LP/CS 90551  
GER 1986 Island LP 208 113  
US 1990 Island/Polygram CD 842 843  
JPN 2002 Island CD UICY-9239 24-bit digital remaster


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