Jump to content


Photo

Pretenders


  • Please log in to reply
4 replies to this topic

#1 draper

draper

    Member

  • Member
  • 442 posts

Posted 12 November 2008 - 05:44 PM

When I think Pretenders, I have to admit that I think of the original line up. James Honeyman Scott, Pete Farndon, Martin Chambers and Chrissie. This cannot be that. This is the most American sounding record I think Ms Hynde has ever made. Think guitars with more Fender than Marshall.

For years I have thought Lucinda Williams listened to Chissie Hynde. I think the circle has turned. I get the impression that Chrissie has been listening to Lucinda. Chrissie Hynde has always been a self aware writer, but this is so present and clear eyed that is is surprising.

The songs sound like "the Pretenders" but with a more open feeling, air, space, dare I say they sound comfortable. Pedal Steel helps keep rootsy feeling and Jim Keltners drumming is always a great addition.

It might be that with Break Up the Concrete, Chrissie Hynde has found her own gravel road.

#2 Josh Hurst

Josh Hurst

    Already broken for thee.

  • Moderator
  • 5,043 posts

Posted 12 November 2008 - 05:53 PM

The performances are decent, and it's nice to hear Hynde sound like she's invested in her own material for a change, but the songwriting on this thing is just dreadful. The Pretenders have never lived up to the promise of their debut, and this record, though one of their best, is ultimately another disappointment, at least for me.

#3 Andy Whitman

Andy Whitman

    Member

  • Member
  • 3,238 posts

Posted 13 November 2008 - 08:35 AM

QUOTE (Josh Hurst @ Nov 12 2008, 05:53 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The performances are decent, and it's nice to hear Hynde sound like she's invested in her own material for a change, but the songwriting on this thing is just dreadful. The Pretenders have never lived up to the promise of their debut, and this record, though one of their best, is ultimately another disappointment, at least for me.

I haven't heard the new one (although the thought of Chrissie Hynde with pedal steel is intriguing), but I think you sell the band short, Josh. The debut album is undoubtedly great, as is the third one (Learning to Crawl, which finds Chrissie coming to grips with the death of two of the founding band members), and the second one is unjustly slighted. It's not great, but it's far from the crushing disappointment that it was portrayed to be at the time of its release. But that third one was released in, what, 1983, so it's been a long, irrelevant time, and every "comeback" I've heard has left me flat.

I have a soft spot for Chrissie, in any case. She gives a shoutout to my wife's hometown in one of her best-known songs. It's the "local girl makes good thousands of miles from home" theme. Which is the way that all the local boys and girls have to make good in the music world when they come from these here parts.

Went back to Ohio
But my pretty countryside
Had been paved down the middle
By a government that had no pride
The farms of Ohio
Had been replaced by shopping malls
And Muzak filled the air
From Seneca to Cuyahoga Falls
Said A, O, way to go Ohio




#4 Christian

Christian

    Member

  • Moderator
  • 10,781 posts

Posted 13 November 2008 - 10:47 AM

QUOTE (Andy Whitman @ Nov 13 2008, 08:35 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I have a soft spot for Chrissie, in any case. She gives a shoutout to my wife's hometown in one of her best-known songs.


I'm beginning to understand your antipathy toward Rush Limbaugh. wink.gif


#5 Darren H

Darren H

    Member

  • Member
  • 2,346 posts

Posted 13 February 2012 - 09:18 AM

I picked up a copy of The Pretenders (the first album) a couple years ago but didn't really listen to it until this weekend, after I decided to put it on my iPhone and then spent all day Saturday cleaning the garage. HOLY CRAP!

I was born in '72 so I discovered pop music at a pretty great time -- just before the launch of MTV, when New Wave was hitting. Like, Get the Knack and Parallel Lines were my first two 8-tracks. The first isn't a great album, obviously, but compared with the chart-toppers of just a few years earlier, the Top 40 in the early '80s had a lot of great music in it. The only downside -- and I say this in retrospect -- is that I wasn't at all prepared for a group like The Pretenders, which I expected to be more like Nena or Katrina and the Waves. I had no context for understanding they were a real New Wave band or that Chrissie Hynde was more Joe Strummer than Belinda Carlisle.

Some language NSFW:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ql4QYQCBYAo