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Articles Home » 1986 Articles » Illusion - 1986 I Like It Loud
Illusion - 1986 I Like It Loud

ARTIST: Illusion
ALBUM: I Like It Loud
LABEL: Geffen
YEAR: 1986


LINEUP: Jay Willard - vocals, guitars * Moses Mo (Gary Moore) - guitars * Tom Reed - keyboards * Paul McCoy - bass * Bobby Chouinard - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 I Like It Loud * 02 Heartbeat (The Call) * 03 Call In The Law * 04 Heart Attack * 05 I Can't Wait * 06 Call Me Up * 07 Shake * 08 Red Light * 09 Get To You * 10 Lifetime

Hard to pin these guys into any musical corner, as they come at you from several directions. Taking their lead from a number of influences and situations, and the collaboration of musical experience from their members. Illusion's debut album first came out on the Geffen label in 1985, though the lineup was slightly different. Being based out of Atlanta, it's not not hard to see how the Mothers Finest connection comes about, with a few of their ex members participating this time around. On the 'Illusion' debut album, MF musos Moses Mo and BB Queen (a.k.a Gary Moore and Barry Borden respectively) played on it. By the way, that album is very hard to track down, while this one, their second 'I Like It Loud' is fairly common place, in bargain bins galore. One can only assume Geffen got behind them second time around and made it readily available. Renowned heavy hitter Bobby Chouinard (Billy Squier's band) managed to find time in his busy schedule to undertake the timekeepers role here, as Borden by this stage went on to join Molly Hatchet. Illusion's sound is radio friendly, but heavy handed as well, perhaps a precursor to a band like Tesla, melodic but with some rough edges around the fringes. Willard's voice is definitely different, fitting somewhere between Ron Keel (Keel), Tom Holland (The B'zz, Holland) and Stephen Pearcy (Ratt).

The Songs
The title track 'I Like It Loud' is Billy Squier-ish (must be those damned drums!), but it grinds away with some big guitars and nice keyboard fills through the middle. 'Heartbeat (The Call)' is very much like Keel, and leads us into 'Call In The Law', a rabble rousing anthem. 'Heart Attack' is like a less glossy version of Ratt while 'Red Light' gives us a flashback to seventies style hard rock complete with guitar and organ interplay. The best track is saved for 'Call Me Up', an aggressive number with some crunching rhythm work through the verses. 'Shake' is a close second, very fast rock n roll with the amps turned up to 10! The album closes with 'Lifetime', which literally gallops to the finish, with guitars and keyboards competing for top honors.

In Summary
Illusion folded soon after, with unencouraging sales, despite Geffens big push. Willard went on to do a stint with North Carolina's The Creek (aka Sugarcreek). Chouinard though, passed away in 1998 to a heart related illness.

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#1 | richardb on June 15 2008 14:37:43
I love this album. Some truly infectious material such as the title cut, 'Call in the law', 'Call me up' and 'Red light' make this an album that deserves to be played at maximum volume!

Richard B
#2 | super80boy on October 23 2016 00:25:37
In the mid-late 80's Geffen was pumping out a lot of quality music with a large number of relatively unknown artists on their roster. These guys were really good and supposedly excellent live. The anthemic 'Call In The Law' is re-used from their debut album, probably in hopes of scoring additional exposure since it was single worthy. Lots of top quality songs on this second LP, The title track and 'Call Me Up' should have been on regular radio rotation. Their more hard-hitting S/T debut is another quality release and worth exploration.
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