Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Steve Perry-Street Talk [Remastered Edition] (1984)


Wow—I should be devoting more time to this whole updating-my-music-library thing more often! Seems I've had a lopsided focus on the 'S' entries of my music library over these past few weeks, but when I keep digging up these golden goodies from the past that feed my insatiable nostalgia for the 80's, how can I help it? One of the most iconic voices in rock music well-recognized and respected from my favorite decade belongs to Steve Perry, remembered and adored by many as the lead vocalist of the legendary band JOURNEY for several years. But I imagine Steve really hasn't ever needed to be part a band with the amazing, husky voice he carries, a distinction he proved all the way back on first of his solo accomplishments entitled "Street Talk". Had almost forgotten this was the one where he cranked out two of the greatest hits in 80's rock music history: "Oh Sherrie" and "Foolish Heart". Both will forever take me back to the memorable radio-listening years of my childhood—"Oh Sherrie" always capturing me with that familiar ' you should've been gone ' wailed acappella right at the beginning and its so wonderfully-delicious hook, ' oh Sherrie, I'm in love ' while "Foolish Heart" delights me with its the tender warmth and breezy groove. Yet there's so much more to talk about on "Street Talk" than that perfect pair of timeless classics that have remained eternal staples on the soft rock airwaves . There's the lovely piece called "I Believe" that bounces along like one of those retro-throwback pop jams from the 60's and gets marvelously jazzed up with a saxophone instrumental midway through (which I think should've been infused into the music all throughout). Or any number of the lively, energetic rockin' jams that jump start you and whose hooks will make you stop what you're doing and wanna dance because the chorus hooks are just too catchy to miss out on: "It's Only Love", "You Should Be Happy" (really, I can stay hooked on just the hook here; otherwise, it's just much too short!), "Captured By The Moment" and "Makes No Difference" (I like these where Steve shows off the range and versatility in his voice, here showing off the higher and loftier side as he's practically screeching some of the lyrics). He and his voice are clearly the talk of this entire "Street Talk" , but there's some songs in particular where I found him to be absolutely astounding: "She's Mine", where his warnings of ' don't hang around here no more, don't show your face here no more ' sees him staking his claim to his woman loud and clear, "Running Alone", which is one of those power ballads that sneak up on you with the soft and gentle beginnings before the music intensifies and the singer lets it rip with the soaring vocals; and "If Only For The Moment, Girl", which I'd completely forgotten was featured on another memorable album, "We Are The World", which was also the charity song that Steve contributed to as part of the star-studded ensemble, USA FOR AFRICA. And every album from the 80's has to have those one or two songs that are simply fun listens; the guilty pleasures here are the pop-perfect "Go Away" and the short n' sweet bluesy rocker "My My My" (the 'm-m-m-m-m-my' delivered in the chorus is like the best part of the song). They say that talk is cheap, but I beg to differ in this case because I'd say my words of praise for this "Street Talk" album are gonna be worth a whole lot to someone:

1. Oh Sherry
2. I Believe
3. Go Away
4. Foolish Heart
5. It's Only Love
6. She's Mine
7. You Should Be Happy
8. Running Alone
9. Captured By The Moment
10. Strung Out
11. My My My
12. Harmony
13. Makes No Difference
14. Don't Tell Me Why You're Leaving
15. If Only For The Moment, Girl

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