Great Rock Albums of 1983: Modern English- After the Snow
Originally, my plan was to post the “After the Snow” album from British post punk, new wave band, Modern English, after the album from INXS. My reason was because back in 1983, I would often confuse the two bands. Worse, I would further confuse INXS’s single “Don’t Change” with the big single from this Modern English album, “I Melt With You.” Both bands sound very similar and it is possible that Modern English could have had a song on the “Rock Star” soundtrack.
I have come to the conclusion that one reason why Modern English never got the success they may have deserved was down to my beef with the 1980s. Too many people wanted to put their music into categories or genres. “After the Snow” offers a mixed bag of musical styles that makes categorizing them difficult. Track two, “Life in the Gladhouse,” is a more progressive rock song while the very next track, “Face of Wood,” might be a candidate for the “Rock Star” soundtrack. However, the track that makes my point is the one after that, “Dawn Chorus.” This song sounds like Jim Morrison came back from the dead and joined The Cult. The guitar intro at the beginning of the song definitely sound like the named band, whose albums I will be visiting a little more down the line and the vocal style could almost be Jim. Saying all that though, I really like the song as I do all of the ones on the album.
Some critic of the “After the Snow” album claims that the single “I Melt With You” is not indicative of the rest of the album. Well it certainly does stand out from the other songs but I think it goes well with the album. It provides a different turn and keeps you from getting to familiar with the album. I like the fact that you don’t know what to expect with each song and if you listen to it without stressing out over what category it should be put in, then the album becomes that much more enjoyable.
- Someone’s Calling
- Life in the Gladhouse
- Face of Wood
- Dawn Chorus
- I Melt With You
- After the Snow
- Carry Me Down
- Tables Turning
Robbie Grey- vocals
Gary McDowell- guitars
Stephen Walker- keyboards
Michael Conroy- bass, violin
Richard Brown- drums, percussion
“After the Snow” by Modern English goes against the 1980s belief that you had to put a band into a category in order to appreciate. Their mixed bag of hard rock, post punk, new wave and progressive rock all goes well on this album. Listen to it with that in mind and you’ll definitely enjoy the album.
Next post: Journey- Frontiers
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