Thursday, August 11, 2016

REMBRANDTS-L.P. (1995)


ORIGINAL POSTING DATE: August 11, 2016

The next piece of artistry I put on display here at the "Music Spectrum" music exposition is something of a 'friendly' offering, decorated with three layers of authenticity to boot. The third studio album by the duo of Danny Wilde and Phil Solem—better known as THE REMBRANDTS—entitled 'L.P." really is an LP, the fifteen tracks totaling a run-time of more than an hour which, in some respects, constitutes as a 'long' time for music to be playing non-stop; that's the first layer of authenticity. The duo's alternative rock style really is 'alternative'—the alternating, at times, from a more refined, easy-listening mellow presentation to a more spirited and intense, heavier rock n' roll approach; that's the second layer of authenticity. Then back to the featured artists themselves: the duo of Danny Wilde and Phil Solem, who really are 'Rembrandts', having sculpted together a gallery of musical masterpieces to entertain their listening audience. Their most renowned creation is undoubtedly the one that made 'friends' with those in the popular music know forever: "I'll Be There For You". The memorable theme song to the ten-season running prime-time sitcom, "Friends", is still as much of an instant smash hit with me today as it surely was two decades ago. Every time I hear those familiar rock guitar riffs in the opening movement, followed by the feel-good lyrics of the unforgettable spirited chorus, images of Courtney Cox, Jennifer Aniston, Matt LeBlanc and the rest of the friendly gang suddenly come rushing into my head with the same force as a fond childhood memory from the 80's. Miss the show, even if I was only able to catch a few episodes now and then; a few replays of "I'll Be There For You" will do that to you. But moving on elsewhere inside THE REMBRANDTS' "L.P." gallery, a couple of my other favorite works of art are all the ones that share a similar spirited rock kick to the "Friends" theme song. There's "This House Is Not A Home", a confession of life being empty without that special woman, then "Lovin' Me Insane", whose intensely energetic rockin' and rollin' rhythm is perfect for a song about love insanity (and that surprise slow down in the tempo to a bluesy rhythm is cool, too). That softer, easy-listening mellow side of our featured artists is put on display first on "Easy To Forget" (I like how the the song's theme is intelligently concealed the lyrics; the woman is not easy to forget), then on the poetic gem that is "Drowning In Your Tears", the plea of forgiveness that is "What Will It Take?" and the calming "The Other Side Of Night". For as poetic as I enjoyed the words to "Drowning In Your Tears" (I found the comparison to being in pouring rain a nice analogy), it's Phil's way with words telling how he'll do things his own way, coupled with his swagger, attitude and delivery, of "My Own Way" that grabs my attention even more, plus the surprise step-up in the tempo during the final movements. April 29th is a date to mark on your digital calendar, because you'll love every minute of that day spent on the album's seventh track; an air of self-liberation and a sense of feeling carefree is the theme of this warming story. Perhaps the most heartwarming offering of all: "As Long As I'm Breathing". Had "I'll Be There For You' not been THE REMBRANDTS' masterpiece to formally conclude this "L.P." exposition , then I would've picked this powerful ballad of true heart and eternal promise as its worthy replacement:

1. End Of The Beginning
2. Easy To Forget
3. My Own Way
4. Don't Hide Your Love
5. Drowning In Your Tears
6. This House Is Not A Home
7. April 29
8. Lovin' Me Insane
9. There Goes Lucy
10. As Long As I Am Breathing
11. Call Me
12. Comin' Home
13. What Will It Take?
14. The Other Side Of Night
15. I'll Be There For You

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