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Articles Home » 1983 Articles » Pyle, Artimus (Band) - 1983 Nightcaller
Pyle, Artimus (Band) - 1983 Nightcaller

ARTIST: Pyle, Artimus (Band)
ALBUM: Nightcaller
YEAR: 1983


LINEUP: Darryl Otis Smith - lead vocals * Karen Blackmon - lead vocals * John Boerstler - guitars, keyboards * Rusty Milner - guitars, keyboards * Steve Brewington - bass * Artimus Pyle - drums, percussion

Guests Steve Porcaro, David Paich, Billy DeMartino - synthesizer * Jerry Peterson - sax

TRACK LISTING: 01 Red Hot Light * 02 Never Be The Same * 03 Take A Picture * 04 You And Me * 05 Another Lover * 06 Tight Spot * 07 Nightcaller * 08 Only Child * 09 Hoping I'll Find You * 10 Charleys Gone


It was many moons ago that Alun (dangerzone) threw the pen at the debut Artimus Pye Band debut LP from 1982. So, upon some encouragement from Gil (Super80Boy) to write about the follow up 'Nightcaller', here we are.. poised with pen at the ready. A.P.B were retained by MCA for their second album, and as Alun alluded to in his previous review, the band went further down the AOR rabbit hole with 'Nightcaller'. Joining the band were additional lead singer Karen Blackmon, who tends to sing most of the material here, while Rusty Milner came in as the replacement second guitarist for Steve Lockhart. It could be easy to see A.P.B trying to replicate Jefferson Starship with their two-tiered male/female lead vocal, though musically, the two bands are miles apart stylistically. A.P.B take a run at southern AOR which bands like Molly Hatchet, 38 Special, Van Zant, Henry Paul Band had great success with, though they sound very commercialised, not unlike the other Lynyrd Skynyrd offshoot Rossington Band. The other interesting facet of this album is the inclusion of Toto pairing Steve Porcaro and David Paich adding their keyboard guile to proceedings. If there is ever an excuse not to listen to this album, then there is no hope for you!

The Songs
Leading off with 'Red Hot Light', this a fantastic rocker with great presence and equally effective riffs and hot Hatchet like solos. 'Never Be The Same' takes a snapshot from the Van Zant songbook, the pulsing bass lines and tap-tastic keyboards add to the appeal. 'Take A Picture' was a track that didn't quite do it for me. The quirky pop/rock sounds like a bad Grace Slick track, I put it down to 1983 being a year of experimentation. Think ZZ Top.. Thankfully A.P.B return to more southern tinged material on 'You And Me', where the two lead singers co-share the lead vocal, and it comes off quite nicely. 'Another Lover' aims squarely at the 38 Special way of doing things, though the Caribbean style keyboards offered up by the Toto boys wasn't a good fit. 'Tight Spot' is another 38 Special style rocker and this one is easily one of the best tracks here. Excellent stuff. I quite liked the melodic and marauding night time affair of the title track with some sax work adding to the flavour. A.P.B up the pace for the strident rocker 'Only Child', while 'Hoping I'll Find You' is very much AOR without the southern flavour.. very nice indeed. 'Charley's Gone' is the final track, the ultimate runaway 'let's get out of town' song. Wasn't sure whether they were talking about a guy, girl, or maybe even a dog!

In Summary
'Nightcaller' though a good album for its time didn't do enough for MCA to continue on with the band. Just the two albums on that label, but worth getting.. both of them. Artimus Pyle would return to Lynyrd Skynyrd in 1987 and would stay with them until 1991. Pyle has kept A.P.B on the go, the band still exist to this day, and have since released two more albums: 2000's 'Live From Planet Earth' and 2007's 'Artimus Venomous', though I've been made aware that neither are in the vein of the two MCA records.

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#1 | gdazegod on January 26 2014 02:32:44
A.P.B - Tight Spot
YouTube Video:
#2 | super80boy on February 02 2014 15:22:46
Thank you for the top notch detailed review. Really enjoyed this album with it's renewed focus on AOR and band line up changes, especially the new female vocalist.
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