Album Review: Harlow, "Harlow"

LA five-piece Harlow are fronted by the wonderful Teresa Straley who has a voice that goes straight down my spine and kicks away my knees. Raw power and controlled passion: Fiona, Robin Beck, and now Teresa Straley – I'm a sucker for it every time. First song Chain Reaction is probably the weakest on the album and makes way for Silence, followed by the Berlinesque Don't Say We're Over.

Empty could come from any of Heart's last three albums, and When You Love Someone is back to Berlin.

Guitarist Tommy Thayer (ex Black n' Blue), bassist Tom Jensen, Kevin Valentine on drums, and keyboard player Pat Regan all turn in exemplary performances, and Pat and Teresa's production is perfect for the band. Hardly surprising as Pat engineered the last Kiss album.

No Escape is reminiscent of early Heart and Beyond Control manages to talk about Pan Am Flight 103 without being schmaltzy crap. An acoustic preamble leads into the powerful roll of Pictures, my favourite.


Weakest song on the album.

I've compared Harlow to several other female-fronted outfits in this review, perhaps unfairly. They are not plagiarists, they are carving out their own niche, and this is an impressive debut album (click here to buy).

9/10

Simon Robinson
Riff Raff
July 1990

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1 comments:

  1. A fantastic, criminally overlooked record, and it's great to see you giving it its props here. When this came out I was working at a record store. Someone put the promo copy on our sound system while we were cleaning after work, and we loved it. Nothing prepared us for "Beyond Control", though - air guitars where launched all over that store. The end of that song is a rock and roll wet dream, like Ann Wilson Zeppelin with better lyrics. (Someone posted the song on YouTube and faded out before the very end....WTF? That's like blacking out the smile on the Mona Lisa, dude!!)

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