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Dunnery, Francis - 1998 Lets Go Do What Happens

ARTIST: Dunnery, Francis
ALBUM: Lets Go Do What Happens
LABEL: Razor And Tie
SERIAL: 82834
YEAR: 1998


LINEUP: Francis Dunnery - lead vocals, guitar * Gary Lucas - guitar * Jon Montagna - bass * Graham Hawthorn - drums * Doug Petty - keyboards * Joe McGinty - farsifa, keyboards * Barry Danielian - trumpet, flugelhorn * David Mann - flute, tenor sax * Ozzy Melendez - trombone * Erin Moran, Ron Durbin, Stephen Harris, Jenny Goodwin - background vocals * Eddie Sayago, Jeremy Malman, Chris Rich - gang vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 My Own Reality * 02 Sunflowers * 03 Perfect Shape * 04 Crazy Is A Pitstop * 05 Jonah * 06 Riding On The Back * 07 I'95 * 08 Crazy Little Heart Of Mine * 09 Home In My Heart * 10 Whoever Brought Me Here * 11 Revolution * 12 Give Up Your Day Job


Those of you who have been around Glory Daze for a while will know that this reviewer tends to favor progressive rock that leans towards the pop/art rock side of things. Sure, the occasional 10 minute Yes opus or a bombastic ELP workout is great fun once in a while, but in the end I usually prefer a hook, something memorable, interesting and innovative under 4-5 minutes. This is why I hold the first 3 It Bites albums with Francis Dunnery in such high regard. Their 1986 debut 'The Big Lad In The Windmill' is one of my favourite releases from that colourful decade and the superb AOR prog of 'Once Around The World' as well as 1989's hard rocking but horribly titled 'Eat Me In St Louis' follow close behind. Unfortunately the band succumbed to the dreaded 'musical differences' that crop up with too many bands, in this case Dunnery wanting to write simpler songs people could remember as opposed to the direction the rest of the band were headed. It Bites MK 1 came to an all too soon end although Francis' ongoing solo career has reflected his taste for pushing the pop boundaries with several quality releases under his belt including 1998's 'Lets Go Do What Happens'.

The Songs
The one-time Robert Plant guitarist usually receives accolades for his previous album 'Tall Blonde Helicopter' though this one tends to get short-shrift. In my opinion it's a solid set of progressive pop with echoes of Peter Gabriel not only in Dunnery's vocals but stylistically as well. The near psychedelia of 'My Own Reality' captures Gabriel's experimental, yet always accessible approach and it's a great tune speckled with odd vocal samples and buzzing electronics. The odd but cool 'Sunflowers' and the charming 'Perfect Shape' give way to the brooding 'Crazy Is A Pitstop' which is one of the set's highlights. 'Jonah' shows the singer/songwriter's softer side and direction he embraced on later albums while 'I'95' takes a harder direction and I can't help but pick up a slight Britpop influence here but its album closer 'Give Up Your Day Job' where Dunnery's creativity and humor really shine while mixing a bit of early Genesis with late '90s angst.

In Summary
In 2009 Francis appeared on the overlooked but very good 'Big Sky' album by Yes related outfit The Syn and is worth checking out and although it seems his solo output has cooled in recent years, he's still out there playing live which is always a good thing.

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#1 | gdazegod on January 01 2016 21:54:05
According to RYM, Francis has released quite a few solo CD's since this one, some on the Aquarian Nation label, some, are self released.
#2 | Explorer on January 01 2016 23:34:01
Francis remains active to this day and has released some top quality works, 'The Gulley Flats Boys' being one, and 'Tall Blonde Helicopter' another, although the latter predated 'Lets go do what happens'. and there`s always It Bites of course.

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