Dire Straits
On Every Street


4.0
excellent

Review

by DrJohn USER (22 Reviews)
July 29th, 2014 | 14 replies


Release Date: 1991 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Mark has the credentials and all the ability in this world on telling stories; the straight and the pliable, the sacred & profane…

Dire straits reached the pinnacle of their commercial success during the mid 80s. Mark Knopfler recalls his brother-in-law trying to reach him on the phone yet being unable to do so. Amidst self ironic critique and alarming realisations about one losing his true self, the opener “Calling Elvis” was manifested and for a big chunk of their fan base, this is the one track standing out from this release. I think differently; the change of direction in Every Street contains some of the most mature efforts Mark and co. exhibited, yet the basis of lyrical content – storytelling - superseding the musical aspect in some of the tunes present here, may provide explanation for the above ranking misplacement of this album. This is an introspective lowdown on Mark’s aesthetics, not a low point in Dire Straits Discography.


“Fade to Black & You and your friend”

With regard to the third interval not substance, these are minor tracks.

I would never dare Mark, to prove that he is a capable blues guitar player, by asking him to play 12 bars. That is not because I am afraid he won’t deliver, but because I am certain he will… you see no guitar player can give himself credit for being one of the greats without knowing how to play the blues. Having said that, remember; this is 1991 and by now Mr. Knopfler has proved his craftiness on numerous minor and major occasions guitarwise. I am glad he did however elaborate his song writing skills into these two tracks.

Regarding “Heavy Fuel” I will be damnatory… not because it’s a bad song, neither because this seems just a hint out of context against the rest of the album tunes … but because of plagiarism. Admit it Mark; you stole the lyrics from Lemmy plus this particular song may be good but it would be great if Lemmy covered it! It’s imperative to add; by no means I would like to indulge into the surrealism of Lemmy covering anything else out of this album, as Dali or Pollock would provide amateurish reference points moving onwards. “Iron Hand” is a showcase of Mark creating soundscapes… or landscapes… colourscapes. When adding blood red to mix with green you’ll get an earthly colour, soil under blue sky maybe, perhaps English land… Sky being blue on occasion and us standing on soil Mark cares to remind us; black is not always the sum of its parts. The cliché - close your eyes to see - is more than fitting and though some of you may not be familiar with the events pertaining to the battle of Orgreave, check it out and then tell me; if someone other than Mark could find a more amiable way, to throw down an iron gauntlet in front of a certain “lady” (Why isn’t he knighted?).

A lyricist possessing the knack - a lady certainly had it in an aforementioned tune; not the iron lady though - should be able to create frames open to interpretation, especially after having presented credentials of him being concise, straight forward and to the point. Mark has the credentials and all the ability in this world on telling stories; the straight and the pliable, the sacred & profane…

On Every Street there’s no objectivity regarding interpretation whatsoever, and I don’t think Mark wants you to believe there is. This is nonlinear genius verbal and auditory narrative craftsmanship, nonetheless musically flowing unlike my ensuing sentence in effort of interpretation. You won’t be able to tell if - he/she/it- left you, if you hurt -him/her/it - and/or if somebody else did. You can be the hero, the anti-hero or even the villain, most possibly all three of them and most certainly alone. One thing Knopfler definitely won’t give out, is the answer to if you are ever going to find it again. He pities you in case you never got a taste in the first place and during the more than pertinent six string outro; Mark deplores you for not trying, then continues his investigation guitar on hand…

This was the last Dire Straits album. From this point forward, Mark would solo his parties now and then, always a great host, never casual though… after all and although knowing its secrets, his ethos has always exhibited distaste for coagulated musical casein.



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user ratings (109)
Chart.
3.2
good

Comments:Add a Comment 
DrJohn
July 29th 2014


489 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Special thanks to Judio! We had an interesting conversation pertaining to “ehtos” over at the proof reading section of Sputnik, a couple of weeks back.

manosg
July 29th 2014


6133 Comments


Great choice for a review man, have a pos. I'm afraid I haven't checked this one properly so I'll make it a priority.

Glad to see the love for Mark Knopfler too. The dude is one of the most emotional guitarists I've listened.

Digging: John Coltrane - Ballads

DrJohn
July 29th 2014


489 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah man, he is a unique guitarist to say the least... amongst my favorite tbh.

KerfuffleinaHussle
July 29th 2014


764 Comments


Love this band but they seem to catch a lot of flak from some people - never understood it.

This is probably my least favourite album, but the guitar tone on You and Your Friend and Planet of New Orleans is heavenlyyy

Irving
Staff Reviewer
July 29th 2014


7307 Comments


I need to get this record. Am only just starting to blood myself with DS and I'm really liking what I've heard so far.



Digging: U2 - Songs of Innocence

DrJohn
July 29th 2014


489 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Imo this album deserves more attention.

@KerfuffleinaHussle

“Love this band but they seem to catch a lot of flak from some people - never understood it.”

Hmmm… if I had to offer some extenuation over this, it would have to do with their most successful commercial release Brothers in Arms. Some could argue that the album contains filler, and to be perfectly honest I wouldn’t necessarily disagree with them ;)

@Irving

Regardless of you choosing this release or something more “popular”, to pave your way through their discog, you are in for a hell of a ride with Dire Straits Irving.

edited



KerfuffleinaHussle
July 29th 2014


764 Comments


Nah I mean I saw an article the other day about the song Tunnel of Love on one of the hundreds of guitar websites on the internet talking about how the song was 'outdated' and how you should copy the ideas from the solo but not 'admit where you got them from.' Basically they were talking about it like it was a Brittney Spears single from 2001. Really bizarre.

But speaking on a critical level, there is some filler on a couple of their albums for sure.

DrJohn
July 29th 2014


489 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"guitar websites"

Mate, you just made my life easier, I don't want to be rude but I don't consider guitar websites "credible" sources... for reasons we can discuss if you like.

Judio!
Contributing Reviewer
July 29th 2014


5995 Comments


Great review DrJohn. Glad to see our whole "ethos" conversation went to good use haha.

Digging: Aphex Twin - Syro

DrJohn
July 29th 2014


489 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Let nothing go to waste. Cheers mate!

Wizard
July 30th 2014


19437 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

This is my least favourite Straits album but your informative review makes me want to revisit it. Well written dude.

Digging: Nightbringer - Ego Dominus Tuus

DrJohn
July 30th 2014


489 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Cool Wizard! I admit to having an affinity for lyrics, and this album primarily rotates around this axis, so I can understand why it ranks low for lots of DS fans.

Wizard
July 30th 2014


19437 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Grasping some aspect of lyrical meaning unfortunately doesn't really change the way I feel about albums. I've always been about instrumentation first and everything else secondary.

Knopfler is totally underrated though. I grew up on this stuff and it totally reminds me of the long road trips to the cottage, hot summer nights, etc.

DrJohn
July 30th 2014


489 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

That's ok... to each his own mate. The instrumentation here takes back seat framing the storytelling; the term "minimalistic" may describe it partially. Yet it is layered intelligently cause Mark is a genius rock arranger. As I stated in my review; I love the outro on the title track!



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