EK 46202 Time's Up
Produced by Ed Stasium
Released on August 28, 1990
Find it at GEMM
EK 46202 cover
[high resolution gatefold scan]

T he band hit the ground running, crazy fast, on their fast album, and Time’s Up doesn’t break their previous land-speed record, no matter what you read. Nothing on here is as shocking as hearing “What’s Your Favorite Colour?” or “Cult of Personality” for the first time, and how could it be? Time’s Up simply tightens the focus. Vivid was a funk/metal/R&B/pop album; a forty-dollar buffet of the senses. Time’s Up is a black metal album; no more experience needed, no apology necessary. By better defining their music, Living Colour becomes easier to pin down: Anthrax, King’s X, Galactic Cowboys. Really smart metal with some pleasant surprises. The Led Zeppelin and Jimi Hendrix parallels still hold some of the time, but Living Colour’s is a systemic absorption of influences that renders the origin almost irrelevant. To say that “Love Rears Its Ugly Head” sounds like Hendrix or “This Is The Life” borrows from Black Sabbath ignores the fact that very little music is created in a vacuum. Time’s Up is unmistakably the work of Living Colour. And the voice of Living Colour is now unmistakably black. For whatever reason, Vivid danced around the issue of identity by making light of its message: “Funny Vibe,” “What’s Your Favorite Color?” But no one is laughing now. “Pride,” “Elvis Is Dead,” “Someone Like You,” dead serious stuff. Even the likeable “Type” delivers a dark message in the small print. Thus I’m more inclined to see this as the humorless second album than a promise fulfilled. Maybe critics equated less clowning around with maturity. The jazz guitar solo on “Under Cover of Darkness,” the unexpected “Ology,” the opening call to arms and highbrow history lesson, all of it pointed to a band that had put away its toys. In a sense, they paid their dues with Vivid, and Time’s Up was their payback.


  1. TIME'S UP    (William Calhoun/Corey Glover/Vernon Reid/Muzz Skillings)
  2. HISTORY LESSON    (Vernon Reid)
  3. PRIDE    (William Calhoun)
  4. LOVE REARS ITS UGLY HEAD    (Vernon Reid)
  5. NEW JACK THEME    (Vernon Reid)
  6. SOMEONE LIKE YOU    (Muzz Skillings)
  7. ELVIS IS DEAD    (Vernon Reid)
  8. TYPE    (Vernon Reid)
  9. INFORMATION OVERLOAD    (Vernon Reid)
  10. UNDER COVER OF DARKNESS    (Corey Glover)
  11. OLOGY    (Muzz Skillings)
  12. FIGHT THE FIGHT    (William Calhoun/Corey Glover/Vernon Reid/Muzz Skillings)
  13. TAG TEAM PARTNERS    (Corey Glover)
  14. SOLACE OF YOU    (Corey Glover/Vernon Reid)
  15. THIS IS THE LIFE    (Vernon Reid)


WILLIAM CALHOUN -- drums, percussion, vocals
COREY GLOVER -- lead vocals, rhythm guitar (8)
VERNON REID -- guitars, vocals
MUZZ SKILLINGS -- bass, vocals
Black Swan String Quartet (Akbar Ali, Charles Burnham, Eileen Folson, Reggie Workman) -- strings (10)
Don Byron -- clarinet and baritone sax (10)
Annette Daniels -- background vocals (3,15)
D.K. Dyson -- background vocals (3,15)
Doug E. Fresh -- vocals (13), mouth percussion (14)
Alan Friedman -- programming (5)
Mick Jagger -- guest at the wake (7)
Toshi Kubota -- guest at the wake (7)
Little Richard -- vocals (7)
Yubie Navas -- guest at the wake (7)
Maceo Parker -- saxophone (7)
Queen Latifah -- vocals (10)
Alva Rogers -- guest at the wake (7)
Rosa Russ -- background vocals (3,15)
Francine Stasium -- guest at the wake (7)
Derin Young -- background vocals (3,15), vocals (14)
Ed Stasium -- engineer, mixing
Paul Hamingson -- engineer, mixing assistant
Ron St. Germain -- mixing
Lex Van Pieterson -- photography (icon)
Michael Lavine -- photography (portrait)
Thunderjockeys + Bryam -- art direction/design

return to LIVING COLOUR discography

US 1990 Epic CDPRO ESK-2151  
US August 28, 1990 Epic LP/CD/CS E/EK/ET-46202 lyric sleeve
UK 1990 Epic LP/CD/CS 466920-1/2/4 lyric sleeve


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