Review Summary: Who said simple cannot be stylistic?...2 of 2 thought this review was well written
Out of the intense outburst of the British punkish rockabilly of the early 80s, Marshall Crenshaw's debut remains one of the most underrated and most overlooked releases. Even though, it was a slight commercial success at the time of its release and spawned a Billboard top 30 single, the work went on oddly unnoticed later, throughout the years. The songcraft corresponds majorly with the new wave sound, as well. Sometimes it resembles a milder Elvis Costello potpourri and often leans towards power pop and contemporary music. By all means, this is a must have for every classic record collector.
The album consists of twelve short-lasting tracks. The most prominent and most successful representation off the record is obviously ''Someday Someway''. Other minor charting picks include ''There She Goes Again'' and ''Mary Anne''. The songs feature simple compositions and contain entertaining lyrics. All the tracks, give out catchy and strong melodies. With guitar solos (ranging from ordinary to more elegant), warm, fast beats and simplistic vocals, this is pure fun. It easily manages to cheer you up. It is highly lovable and may also, bring a feeling of nostalgia to people who like (or liked) to enjoy rock n' roll of the 60s. Something like a Buddy Holly adaptation, in a more pop-oriented synthesis.
Now, the difference (making a referrence to the comparison made earlier on the review) between Costello and Crenshaw is that the first one is British while the second one is American. Both of them bring various life experiences, feelings and expressions in a different way. Elvis presents them tougher and louder, while Marshall decides to show off within a comfortable distance and lay down less wild. The album emphasizes much on an alternative approach of the new wave nuance. Often, some of the track's vocals, sound less fascinating, but, this is eventually taken away by the endurance of the musicians backing up. Should I mention that there are only two people helping Crenshaw with the instrumentation? He plays guitar and lead sings, while his brother (Robert Crenshaw) hits the drums and Chris Donato offers a friendly assistance on the bass.
In conclusion, ''Marshall Crenshaw'' is a very beautiful lost gem that should be given a try. The songs are simple, short, entertaining and melodic. They are both for boys and girls, for music lovers and those looking for some nostalgia. For younger individuals (like me) may seem a bit old-fashioned, but, let me tell you something. Why do old-fashioned stuff always sound better? Huh? Pure coincidence? I don't think so...