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Articles Home » 1981 Articles » Sneaker - 1981 Sneaker
Sneaker - 1981 Sneaker

ARTIST: Sneaker
ALBUM: Sneaker
LABEL: Handshake
SERIAL: FW 37361
YEAR: 1981
CD REISSUE: 1994, CNR Records, CNR 2001764 * 2003, Cool Sounds (Japan), COOL-110


LINEUP: Tim Torrance - guitars * Mitch Crane - vocals, guitars * Michael Carey Schneider - vocals, keyboards * Jim King - keyboards, synthesizers, vibes * Michael Cottage - bass * Mike Hughes - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Don't Let Me In * 02 More Than Just The Two Of Us * 03 One By One * 04 Jaymes * 05 In Time * 06 Get Up Get Out * 07 Looking For Someone Like You * 08 Millionaire * 09 No More Lonely Days src='/infusions/images/reviews/score0.gif'>


Enough boys on this album to start a basketball team! Well .. if you like your AOR a tad wimpish, then step right on up, as Sneaker have some surprises in store for you. Very much in the Ambrosia and early Toto vein, crossed with a little Doobie Brothers and you get the picture. Some of these songs are startling enough you'd think David Pack was singing them. The Handshake label, as well as the small label called Radio generated some lovely AOR acts back in the early 1980's. Sneaker surprisingly had enough clout to get Jeff 'Skunk' Baxter (ex Doobie Brothers guitarist) to produce them despite the small label status. They must have done something half right, as they put a single into the lower reaches of the American Top 40 in the form of 'More Than Just The Two Of Us', a ballad not unlike Dan Fogelberg or Randy Vanwarmer would do.

The Songs
However, some of the other songs hold immense interest, including the opener 'Don't Let Me In' which could have been a killer Ambrosia song, the gorgeous west coast pomp of One By One' as well as the next track 'Jaymes' reminding me of primetime Michael McDonald. A strident beat cuts through the track 'In Time', similar in effect to the Alan Parsons Project, though the keyboard solo is of Zon/Roadmaster proportions! 'Looking For Someone Like You' meanders in a very seventies fashion, sounding like Firefall, while 'No More Lonely Days' has a slight fusion flavoured sound and a shuffle backbeat like a funked down Larry Carlton. It's also where Jim King's vibes and synths get a bit of a workout.

In Summary
Overall, I like this album a lot, and was it only perchance that I saw this advertised for sale in Holland. Good on ya CNR Records for giving this a re-release in 1994. The band followed this up with 'Loose In The World', and though disbanding in 1982, there are more Sneaker CD's available that have been retrospectively released, thanks mainly to keen Japanese fans.

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This article has been tagged
Tags: Sneaker 
#1 | Eric on October 01 2008 03:03:46
Superb west coast- 'Don't Let Me In' sounds like a Steely Dan out take and I remember seeing the band on 'Solid Gold' lip syncing to 'More Than Just The Two Of Us'.
#2 | jeffduran on October 01 2008 03:30:28
Agree...Essential West Coast!
#3 | gdazegod on January 01 2013 12:20:29
YouTube Video:
#4 | code4 on October 24 2015 16:33:50
Elegantly produced document of golden age westcoast pop/rock indeed. I don't find it really blows me away often but i can certainly see how a serious pure westcoast enthusiast would love this, hence it's status amongst many westcoast fans as a perfect masterpiece. Still, i 'like it' and i have certainly always loved one song here which is 'In Time' with it's Beach Boys like background vocals on the chorus.
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