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Sundholm, Roy - 1979 The Chinese Method

ARTIST: Sundholm, Roy
ALBUM: The Chinese Method
LABEL: Ensign Records
YEAR: 1979


LINEUP: Roy Sundholm - lead and backing vocals, rhythm guitar * Alan Platt - drums, percussion * Bruce Douglas - bass, guitar * Guy Humphries, Brian Robertson, Carmen Demichi - lead guitars * Patrick Browne, Bob Andrews - keyboards * John Earle, Ray Beavis, Dick Hanson - brass * Sharon Cambell, Linda Taylor - backing vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Back In The Neighbourhood * 02 Robbed * 03 Go Zero * 04 The Way The Story Ended * 05 A Place In The World * 06 The Girls Are Out Now * 07 Waiting For The Night * 08 Did You Ever Have A Heart * 09 Every Minute * 10 Should I Wait For You

Roy Sundholm was at one time a member of the legendary Spencer Davis Group which would not be a good indicator of his solo debut which is rightfully considered a power pop classic. Again, one of those guys with precious little information to his name on the internet or otherwise, but Sundholm released a second album 'East to West' in 1981. I have never come across a copy, so whether or not it followed the same style as 'The Chinese Method' is unclear from my vantage point.

The Songs
This is classic stuff and one of the best power pop albums I have heard. It didn't get much better than this and each song here is a classic in the best tradition of Phil Seymour, Greg Kihn Band and Tommy Tutone. 'Back in the Neighbourhood' kicks the album off like Rick Springfield circa his 'Working Class Dog' album. In fact, vocally Sunderholm and Springfield have a lot in common. This is fun music made for ballrooms and pubs on a hot summer night and with the exception of the final track 'Should I Wait For You?' which Tommy Tutone fans should hear, the music is fast paced and razor sharp. Thin Lizzy's Brian Robertson and keyboardist Bob Andrews from pub rock favourites Brinsley Schwartz both contribute to the album, but this is Sundholm's show with 'Go Zero', 'The Girls Are Out Now' and 'Did You Ever Have a Heart?' standing out as all-time power pop gems.

In Summary
Special mention for the stunning cover art, 'The Chinese Method' has never been on CD and it obviously didn't sell very well to begin with, but it's definitely one to search for if you at all have a passion for late 70's, early 80's guitar pop. Break out the skinny ties and get yourself a copy!

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#1 | chilton on March 28 2007 10:27:29
I bought it when it was released and I even got to see him live in London in the summer of 1981. Very good show, I still have a signed photo.

His 2nd solo album was more downbeat, moving towards a Dire Straits-style sound. But there are some great pop hooks on it too, especially Good Girls Don't Wear White. I guess it'll never be re-released so I transfered both LPs to cd-r..

I've also been trying to locate one or two radio sessions he did around that time, but so far, no luck. He dropped out of the business soon after the 2nd LP. Nowadays he runs a hotel in Torquay - yes, the Fawlty Towers town.
#2 | DEMONAOR on July 17 2010 20:53:20
Good music indeed.
#3 | gdazegod on November 26 2010 22:24:59
I have had the opportunity to listen to this recently, and gotta say, it's pretty damned good. Very jangly, and reminds of the late 70's scene when artists like this were in vogue. A good find.

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