AB 4235 Frogs Sprouts Clogs and Krauts
Produced by The Rumour and Roger Bechirian
Released on March 1979
US CHART POSITION #160
Find it at GEMM
AB 4235 cover
[high resolution photo]
 

T he knock on Frogs is that the songs don’t leap off the record. Instead of rollicking pub rock, it favors synthesizers and moodier, heavier subjects. Frogs has one good song, “One Good Night,” and some pretty good ones in “All Fall Down,” “Frozen Years,” “Tired of Waiting” and “Emotional Traffic.” Otherwise, it’s a difficult record, a serious second album from a band that no one wanted to take seriously. Sure, you wanted to see The Rumour succeed on some small level, maybe even score a Top 40 hit, then slide back in rank behind Graham Parker with a satisfied smirk on their faces. But you weren’t going to follow The Rumour too far into the woods, and tracks like “We Believe In You/New Age” and “I Can’t Help Myself” were further out than I wanted to go. As an album of new music, Frogs Sprouts Clogs and Krauts isn’t bad, but consider the works released in 1979: Squeezing Out Sparks, Look Sharp!, Labour of Lust, Armed Forces. Those albums are brilliant, and The Rumour, knowing they couldn’t outsmart the competition, might have done better to play the fool. Amazingly, this album did scrape past the Top 200; amazing given that Graham Parker hardly had any coattails to walk on. Today, the record is something of a new wave curio, an example of the little band that could and did and then disbanded. I’d reckon you’d have a lot of Elvis, Joe Jackson, Dave Edmunds and Nick Lowe records (or a shrine to Graham Parker) before arriving at The Rumour. Frogs (and their albums in general) are better than the worst of those artists (Mike’s Murder, Nick the Knife), but worse than the best. Their second album hangs half an imaginary star lower than their third (which borrowed better material), and likely lower than Max too (I’m reconstructing The Rumour from Purity).

AB 4235 back cover AB 4235 picture sleeve
AB 4235 back cover AB 4235 picture sleeve

TRACK LISTING

  1. EMOTIONAL TRAFFIC    (Bob Andrews/P.Mayberry)    2:48
  2. WE BELIEVE IN YOU/NEW AGE    (Bob Andrews/P.Mayberry)    5:06
  3. FROZEN YEARS    (Brinsley Schwarz)    3:37
  4. TIRED OF WAITING    (Rick Danko/Jim Atkinson)    3:25
  5. EURO    (Brinsley Schwarz)    3:53
  6. ONE GOOD NIGHT    (Martin Belmont/Bob Andrews)    2:46
  7. LOVING YOU (IS FAR TOO EASY)    (Martin Belmont)    3:20
  8. ALL FALL DOWN    (Bob Andrews)    2:29
  9. LEADERS    (Martin Belmont/Nick Lowe)    3:10
  10. I CAN'T HELP MYSELF    (Bob Andrews)    2:42

CREDITS

BOB ANDREWS -- keyboards and vocals
MARTIN BELMONT -- guitars and vocals
ANDREW BODNAR -- basses
STEVE GOULDING -- drums and vocals
BRINSLEY SCHWARZ -- guitar and vocals
Dick Hanson -- trumpet (8)
Roger Bechirian -- engineer

return to THE RUMOUR discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK March 1979 Stiff LP SEEZ-13  
US 1979 Arista LP AB 4235 picture sleeve

 

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