Author: Roger Morton
Source: Record Mirror
Publish date: 25 October 1986
FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD ‘Liverpool’ (ZTT IQ 8)
Here come the climax boys again. The climax blues boys, shooting for the stars, when they should be shooting at them.
Now, seeking that divine rush of hope the epic soundtrack, the heroic voice means (as Simple Minds and U2 and others have shown) risking sounding hollow and pompous, which much of this record, unfortunately, does. Apart from the odd lapses into various Bowie mannerisms, that multi-layered production (Hey! CD buffs), sounds strangely old fashioned and leaves the band scuttling around trying to find songs which live up to it. Comparisons stink, of course, but if Meat Loaf was to join ABC…
On the dynacoustic, heavy metal whirlpool of ‘Warriors Of The Wasteland’, on the angelic waterfall of ‘Maximum Joy’ and the waltz song of ‘For Heaven’s Sake’, it works quite thrillingly. But, ‘Is Anybody Out There?’ is ponderous MOR smooch, and ‘Kill The Pain’ and ‘Lunar Bay’ sound like fillers. So, it can be bought to put alongside Eurythmics albums, and the last Bowie album, but for the wage labourer and his dancing shoes it’s neither a bargain, nor a deliverance. Just jacked-up Mersey beat driving a Ferrari.