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Articles Home » 1988 Articles » 4 Reasons Unknown - 1988 4 Reasons Unknown
4 Reasons Unknown - 1988 4 Reasons Unknown

ARTIST: 4 Reasons Unknown
ALBUM: 4 Reasons Unknown
SERIAL: BFE 40667 (LP), EK 40667 (CD)
YEAR: 1988


LINEUP: Paul Nugent - vocals, keyboards, percussion * Morgan Ferguson - vocals, bass * Edward Harvey - guitars * Michael Clements - drums

Guests: Lou Pomanti - keyboards * Matt Gerrard - bass * Earl Seymour - alto sax, steiner * Claude Desjardins - keyboards, percussion, programming * David Bendeth - guitars * Kenny MacLean, Chris Smith, Rachael Oldfield, Sherri Jeacocke - background vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Bad Boy * 02 I Will Surrender * 03 Talk To Me * 04 Does Anybody (Need Anyone Anymore) * 05 Water On The Rocks * 06 Wild Elegance * 07 I Can't Let You Go * 08 Take A Dance * 09 Love Parade * 10 On Stranger Nights

A talented Dallas Texas based band who had more in common with the hi-tech/AOR sub-genre going on during the mid 80's rather than pure driven Texas boogie! Stylish hi-tech pop/AOR is the name of the game with these guys, built around the songwriting skills of Paul Nugent (who it appears had a songwriting deal stitched up with CBS/Epic prior to this), the band though, appear to look like typical 80's hard rockers with their black leather jackets and jeans on the back cover, though that is not the case musically. The album was produced by David Bendeth, who made a career out of producing bands in a similar vein, like Canadians Platinum Blonde, Eye Eye and Regatta. Bendeth was also the producer for GDAZE favourites Wrabit on their 1983 effort 'West Side Kid', and it was his association with some of those aforementioned bands which led to guest spots being made available on the 4RU record: namely Lou Pomanti (Wrabit) and Chris Smith/Matt Gerrard (Regatta). The fact that the album was recorded at Paul Gross' Phase One Studios in Toronto was another reason for the Canadian connection.

The Songs
Continuing the Canadian theme (these guys must feel geographically displaced!), comparisons can be made to the likes of Diamond In The Rough, The Arrows, Glass Tiger, Cats Can Fly, New Regime.. those sorts of bands. Therefore, 4 Reasons Unknown are a perfect fit for this site. Musically it's relatively lightweight fare, with a clean (perhaps too clean) production. The vocals are split between Nugent (the higher register parts) and Ferguson the lower parts. Kicking open with 'Bad Boy', the fast paced workout with a funky tinge is a good start, the sax spots from Earl Seymour giving it a party edge. 'I Will Surrender' is probably the most AOR oriented track here, I think it was also the bands first single. 'Talk To Me' and 'Water On The Rocks' are both very poppy, reminding me in particular of Diamond In The Rough or perhaps Garnett Ford at a stretch. 'Does Anybody' is a good representation of their hi-tech style crossed with a slight new romantic sheen. With that in mind, 'Wild Elegance' has definite Simple Minds references throughout and is one of the better tracks here. 'I Can't Let You Go' reverts to a slower tempo, swimming in melody mostly, whereas 'Take A Dance' is more lightweight AOR with a bed of synthesizers and guitar riffs that tries hard to be dangerous! The last two tracks passed me by, not holding a lot of attention sad to say.

In Summary
I don't remember much of anything about this band during 1988, though they had been in operation, performing in their home-town Dallas the previous year. The band had a video out too, 'I Will Surrender' is somewhere out there on the Internet, we may yet try and source a copy and put it up on this article page. I much prefer it when this band rocks out, but unfortunately only a couple of tracks show this trait ('Wild Elegance' and 'Bad Boy' in particular). The rest, as mentioned, is very lightweight stuff. Still melodic and highly listenable, and in keeping with the demographic of this site.

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#1 | woofer on April 24 2009 18:45:32
I bought this CD at a pawn shop a few years ago but have yet to pop it into the ol' CD player. Thanks for your review. I'm definitely going to dig it out and give it a listen. I'd also like to see if I can find their video on YouTube.
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