510 518-2 Desire of the Rhino King
Produced by Adrian Belew
Released on November 5, 1991
no chart information
Find it at GEMM
510 518-2 cover
[high resolution scan]

K ronomyth 5.5: ODD SAVE, THE RHINO KING. This is a strange beast: a digitally remastered compilation/sampler from Adrian Belew’s three Island records. Despite a generous selection that reprises nearly half of each of those albums, the choices (selected by Adrian himself) are sometimes baffling. Surely “Stop It,” “Another Time” and “I Wonder” belong with his best work, right? The track order is equally confusing, beginning with “The Final Rhino,” an interesting but wholly directionless instrumental. “Swingline” would have kicked things off on a brighter, bouncier note. Dividing Desire of the Rhino King into three sections (eight tracks each from the first two albums, five from the Tail sessions) doesn’t help. Honestly, the songs and instrumentals from those albums are interchangeable (excepting that the third album was more about ethnic sounds and altered pitch than animal emulators). If you own the Island albums (and I do), Desire of the Rhino King is completely unnecessary. The lone addition of “Joan Miro etc.” is just three more minutes of weirdness you can live without and the digital remastering doesn’t make that much of a difference. If you haven’t heard the Island years, better to spend your money on the twofer repackage of Lone Rhino and Twang Bar King (Beat Goes On, 2009). Again, I have to wonder what kind of relationship Adrian and Island had to allow yet another commercially challenged animal to slip into the mainstream market. For all I know, they’re working on a compilation of instrumental outtakes from his first three albums right now. I never saw his early albums as “difficult,” but Desire of the Rhino King takes pains to make them seem that way. Oh well, maybe Atlantic will do a better job of it someday with Inner Pink Daddy or whatever.

TRACK LISTING

  1. THE FINAL RHINO    1:24
  2. THE LONE RHINOCEROS    3:57
  3. BIG ELECTRIC CAT    4:51
  4. THE MOMUR    3:45
  5. HOT SUN    1:29
  6. THE MAN IN THE MOON    3:45
  7. SWINGLINE    3:25
  8. ADIDAS IN HEAT    2:44
  9. FISH HEAD    4:30
  10. THE IDEAL WOMAN    4:08
  11. SEXY RHINO    0:37
  12. TWANG BAR KING    1:26
  13. PAINT THE ROAD    (Adrian Belew/Bill Janssen)    3:19
  14. SHE IS NOT DEAD    4:41
  15. THE RAIL SONG    5:39
  16. BALLET FOR A BLUE WHALE    4:44
  17. THE GYPSY ZURNA    3:03
  18. JOAN MIRO'S PROCESSION THROUGH THE INSIDES OF A PURPLE ANTELOPE ACROSS A SEA OF TUNA FISH    3:03
  19. PORTRAIT OF MARGARET    4:00
  20. LAUGHING MAN    5:28
  21. GUERNICA    2:00

    All selections written by Adrian Belew unless noted

CREDITS

ADRIAN BELEW -- guitars, lead vocals, drums, percussion, cover concept
CHRISTY BLEY -- keyboards, vocals
BILL JANSSEN -- sax, vocals
CLIF MAYHUGH -- bass, vocals
Audie Belew -- piano (1)
Larrie Londin -- drums
Rich Denhart -- engineer
Gary Platt -- engineer
Stan Hertzman -- executive producer, photography
Cindy Johnston -- typesetting
Chris Covatta -- photography
Christine Rodin -- photography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
US November 5, 1991 Island CD/CS 510 518-2/I4-10518 digital remaster

 

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