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Daltrey, Roger - 1985 Under A Raging Moon

ARTIST: Daltrey, Roger
ALBUM: Under A Raging Moon
LABEL: Ten (UK), Atlantic (USA)
SERIAL: DIX17, 7 81269-1
YEAR: 1985
CD REISSUE: 1990, Ten, DIXCD17 * 1990, Atlantic, 7 81269-2


LINEUP: Roger Daltrey - vocals * Robbie McIntosh - guitars * John Siegler, Tony Butler - bass * Nick Glennie-Smith, Tim Hinkley - keyboards * Mark Brzezicki - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 After The Fire * 02 Don't Talk To Strangers * 03 Breaking Down Paradise * 04 The Pride You Hide * 05 Move Better In The Night * 06 Love Me Like You Do * 07 Let Me Down Easy * 08 Fallen Angel * 09 It Don't Satisfy Me * 10 Rebel * 11 Under A Raging Moon


Although much featured here at Glory Daze in the past, it would be a huge disservice to Roger Daltrey if mention was not made of what was his most popular solo album of the 80's and indeed one of the finest of his entire career. Daltrey embraced AOR with a passion in the mid 80's, casting off the ill advised pop of 'Parting Should Be Painless' and instead adding seasoned AOR session men and using songs by the likes of John Parr, Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance. The album as a whole was meant as a tribute to Keith Moon, as witnessed by the title and Pete Townshend himself contributed 'After The Fire'. Musically it's melodic to the core and Daltrey himself turns in a performance which merely added to his already significant legend.

The Songs
'After The Fire' is one of Townshend's best compositions of the 80's and is better than anything off 'White City' that same year. Daltrey gives it the expected emotion and this is a tremendous piece of melodic rock in every sense. Following is 'Don't Talk To Strangers', a fantastic AOR driven track, with a ton of heavy riffs and a marvelous chorus. Things only get better, with Russ Ballard contributing the memorable 'Breaking Down Paradise', another stunning and effortless melodic acheivement from Ballard. Daltrey had a hand in writing the softer 'The Pride You Hide', which doesn't quite reach the heights of the earlier tracks, never really taking any twists musically. 'Move Better In The Night' is a reworking of the song which Jon English recorded in 1980, only Daltrey adds more suspense and intrigue vocally and by this point I suspect many had been wishing this had been a Who album. Much softer again is 'Love Me Like You Do', but more listenable is the Adams-Vallance penned 'Let Me Down Easy, which could have been on any Adams album of the time and is an understated rocker. The massive AOR power of 'Fallen Angel' blows away Strangeway for British melodic rock supremacy, Daltrey especially is at his best here. 'It Don't Satisfy Me' could be off a Jimmy Barnes solo album and 'Rebel' is a soaring anthem, again penned by Adams-Vallance, featuring a trademark Daltrey scream. The albums climax is the Parr-Julia Downes title track, a six minute epic with an opening keyboard line mirroring 'Won't Get Fooled Again'. The synth touches are exceptional and the drumming sequence featuring a myriad of drummers is explosive. This is without doubt a classic and a worthy tribute to the much missed Moon.

In Summary
This album received much acclaim upon release and restored some of Daltrey's solo prowess that he had lost since 'McVicar'. Daltrey''s overall effort here is nothing short of amazing. He gives life to tracks that might otherwise have been considered ordinary and the AOR backdrop makes this even more of a must hear for those who have bypassed it. Daltrey of course continued in this fashion through the rest of the decade, but with not as much heaviness musically speaking.

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#1 | Eric on February 15 2009 11:54:18
Quite right Alun, this is a great album!
#2 | jeffduran on February 20 2009 10:42:40
I enjoy this better than anything The Who recorded. Great Review!
#3 | Eric on February 20 2009 22:20:53
'My Generation' to 'Who Are You' era Who I really enjoy. 'Face Dances' was just so-so and 'It's Hard' I didn't like at all. I loved the 'Quadrophenia' film and the mod scene's of the '60s as well as 1979 have always intrigued me.

On the solo albums, 'Empty Glass' was good, but nothing else Pete did on his own impressed me much although I tend to like all the early Daltery albums and his later albums- this one and 'McVicar' are excellent. Keith Moon's solo was garbage and Entwistle's stuff didn't do much for me either.
#4 | jefflynnefan on February 21 2009 03:01:00
Wasn't there one that had Roger as a Centaur? You know half horse and half man?
#5 | dangerzone on February 21 2009 09:18:10
Yes, that was 1975's 'Ride A Rock Horse'. I prefer 77's 'One Of The Boys'. Paul Mcartney wrote a song for that album called 'Giddy' which was better than his own solo output of the 70's!
#6 | Eric on February 21 2009 18:05:53
McCartney certainly was cranking out great tunes back then wasn't he? I like 'The Prisoner' from 'One Of The Boys' too and overall it's a fine album. The late Jimmy McCulloch from Thunderclap Newman, Wings and later The Dukes (reviewed here at GD) also played on the record.

Alun, not to push too hard, but having you review 'One Of the Boys' would be very cool!Thumbs Up
#7 | dangerzone on February 21 2009 20:12:59
It's been on my list for many years Eric! I'll certainly be getting around to it.headphone
#8 | reyno-roxx on March 07 2009 22:11:46
Just picked this one up cheap. Have all The Who stuff, but this passed me by. What an album to miss out on. Absolutely fantastic! The title track is immense.
#9 | gdazegod on March 17 2009 03:07:06
Check out the sleeveface for this album..

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