Tuesday, October 22, 2013
The Embarrassment God Help Us Bar None 1990
When I first tracked this down, I was a disappointed with it. The production is beefy, loud, and unforgiving. The band re-records previous classics and it just sounds forced. It was also released in 1990, yet it seems to hearken back to 1985 for influences, which make it sound more out of place than the production.
It was a reunion album of sorts. The band's catalog was secured by Bar None so the all encompassing Heyday 1979-1983 could be released. Apparently, the people at Bar None were so enamored by the Embarrassment they asked them to do an album to coincide with Heyday and a post-83 compilation that was never released. The band obliged. Simple as that. The fans didn't expect it and I don't even think the people at Bar None expected it, but it happened.
Listening to it again, it has it's moments. While certainly not the band in its prime, any Embarrassment is good Embarrassment. The first track, 'Train of Thought' is excellent and wouldn't miss a beat on anything they released previously (this goes equally for the song's reprise on the flip side "...The Train Repirse"). "Horror of the Fire" has a good roots rock vibe and likely would have been scoffed at it the band's earlier days, but gets the nod on a release like this. "Podmen" has some great guitar work. At the same time though, I could do without the song "Albert." The remake of "Sex Drive" draws too much on metal and hard rock. Finally, the remake of "Burning Love" is worthless and adds nothing to the album.
Horror of Fire
Train of Thought