960 440-1 Reconciled
Produced by Michael Been and The Call
Released on 1986
US CHART POSITION #82
Find it at GEMM
960 440-1 cover
[high resolution photo]
 

I bought this album because Peter Gabriel sang backing vocals on the opening track, “Everywhere I Go.” Can’t even hear him. Great call, that. The consensus seems to be that Reconciled is one of The Call’s better albums, so I shouldn’t complain. There’s not a hit single on here like “The Walls Came Down,” but a pair of tracks (Everywhere, I Still Believe) consistently turn up on their greatest hits albums, so it’s probably essential Call (should such an animal exist). Since it’s the elephant in the room, I’ll usher it out early. U2. That’s what The Call most reminds me of, but I can’t help thinking that’s a lazy assessment. I’m as likely to hear traces of Ian McCulloch and David Byrne in Michael Been’s voice, Simple Minds in the music. Now comparing a band to U2 is always dangerous, since few bands do what they do so well. Playing like U2 requires a commitment that The Call seem unwilling to make; Bono flies over the edge without a care, but Been is restrained by something (perhaps his religious faith) and ends up sounding less like a man on fire (Bono) than a man touching a hot stove. I know that sounds catty, even cruel, but when you listen to this album you’ll know what I’m talking about. When he burns a little cooler, as on “Sanctuary,” Been finds a complementary comfort zone for his voice. As for the melodies, they’re occasionally very good, requiring a little time to grow on you like latter-day Echo & The Bunnymen. Mind you, the Bunnymen were a better band; Scott Musick’s drums here are U2 101, Jim Goodwin’s keyboards occasionally register a cheese-factor-9. As a period piece, Reconciled is engaging, but ultimately a better candidate for the cut-out bin than the time capsule. And, yes, I mentioned U2 four times (five times now), so I’m just as lazy as everyone else.

960 440-1 back cover
960 440-1 back cover

TRACK LISTING

  1. EVERYWHERE I GO    4:18
  2. I STILL BELIEVE (GREAT DESIGN)    (Michael Been/Jim Goodwin)    6:30
  3. BLOOD RED (AMERICA)    3:42
  4. THE MORNING    4:40
  5. OKLAHOMA    4:18
  6. WITH OR WITHOUT REASON 4:02
  7. SANCTUARY    3:57
  8. TORE THE OLD PLACE DOWN    (Michael Been/Jim Goodwin)    4:12
  9. EVEN NOW    4:37

    All songs written by Michael Been unless noted

CREDITS

MICHAEL BEEN -- bass, guitar, lead vocals
TOM FERRIER -- guitar, vocals
JIM GOODWIN -- keyboards, vocals
SCOTT MUSICK -- drums, vocals
Jimmy Bralower -- drum programming
Jeff Bova -- keyboard programming
Peter Gabriel -- backing vocals (1)
Jim Kerr -- backing vocals (1,7)
Robbie Robertson -- guitar (4)
Rob Eaton -- engineer
Carol Friedman -- art direction
Janet Perr -- color treatment & design
Carol Been -- photography research

return to THE CALL discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
US 1986 Elektra LP/CD/CS 60440  
UK/CAN/GER 1986 Elektra LP 960 440  

 

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