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  #11  
Old 02-03-2009, 06:24 PM
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Well, I'm aware that we are talking about Bryan Adams here... he is known for cheesy lyrics. First, I don't consider your 3 examples that cheesy (in comparison),
There's none of that cheesyness on albums like Reckless, Into The Fire or even On A Day Like Today. I just don't understand how anyone could call 18 Til I Die a mature album when all he does is pretending to be 18 and actually write songs that 18 year old relate to, instead of making the proper rock music he used to make in the eighties.

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actually that whole "Underwear" song is quite a funny thing which I don't take too serious. In the context of the songs these lines totally work.
It doesn't sound like a fun song to me. Hey Elvis, that's a fun song, and should've been on the original album. If Ya Wanna Be Bad... is also a fun song, and should've been on the original album. Underwear just sounds like a weak attempt at creating a fun song, but failing miserably. The live versions of it were just appaling.

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Secondly, musically the record sounds like a band playing, it has many nice acoustic guitars and the song structures are beyond what was to come on the following years.
Occasionally it sounds like a band playing. Most of the time it sounds like Bryan Adams singing along to a backing track where every now and then Keith Scott is allowed to do a few fills. Again, Hey Elvis sounds like a band playing, but Mutt, the producer, killed the sound of the drums. When it even remotely starts to sound a bit heavy he mutes everything out of the ordinary in order to make it appeal to as many radio stations as possible. Just compare the live versions of 18 and The Only Thing from that era to what it sounds like on the album. Live it sounds like a band playing, on the album it sounds like a backing track.

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And whatever you say, I don't feel guilty of having "Let's Have A Night To Remember" as a favourite track. I would never argue the lyrics are deep, but the sound, the melody, the music always pleased me.
I actually can sum up a conversation between me and my ex girlfriend about this:

Love, let's make a night to remember...
- yeah...
from January to December...

See how this just doesn't work? We both burst out laughing because it just sounds so ridiculous. The verses are alright, but everything that's right about the verses is wrong about the chorus.

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So, whatever you say, for a BA album "18" is quite mature. It's not just easy listening, because there is more creativity in these songs, something he never really found again afterwards, sadly. "Have You Ever Really Loved A Woman" is a great track, musically, and very moving lyrically.
I agree that Bryan Adams is capable of delivering cheesy lyrics in a good way just like Bon Jovi is, but on 18 he just fails half of the time. You're Still Beautiful To Me, I'll Always Be Right There, Have You Ever, in a way they work. The others just simply don't.

Yes, it might be more creative, but half of the album sounds like b-side or outtakes from previous writing sessions. The way they're produced, the lyrics, the guitars, everything. While the guitarwork on Waking Up The Neighbours was still pretty decent for a Bryan Adams album, there's never a moment on 18 that makes it sound like a guitar album, a rock album. Black Pearl is the closest to a rock song you get, but once again the production on it is so terrible that it loses most of it's edge. It all sounds like a compilation of songs for soundtracks or other albums. It never sounds like a proper album.

Would it have been something like this...

1. Hey Elvis!
2. The Only Thing That Looks Good On Me Is You
3. Do To You
4. 18 Til I Die
5. You're Still Beautiful To Me
6. If Ya Wanna Be Bad - Ya Gotta Be Good
7. I'll Always Be Right There
8. Low Life
9. Black Pearl
10. Have You Ever Really Loved A Woman?

...I wouldn't slag it off as much as I do now. Low Life is a good song and I fail to understand why it's not on the album. The same for Hey Elvis and If Ya Wanna Be Bad. They all should've been on it, and everything I haven't listed should either have been a b-side or should've been put on a soundtrack or whatever. But it all doesn't belong on the 18 record.

The only really good thing about the 18 era was the artwork. The 18 era was really the beginning of the end when it comes to Bryan Adams making rock albums. While Waking Up The Neighbours still had a little edge, 18 just has zero.

Salaam Aleikum,
Sebastiaan
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  #12  
Old 02-04-2009, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Supersonic View Post

Yes, it might be more creative, but half of the album sounds like b-side or outtakes from previous writing sessions. The way they're produced, the lyrics, the guitars, everything. While the guitarwork on Waking Up The Neighbours was still pretty decent for a Bryan Adams album, there's never a moment on 18 that makes it sound like a guitar album, a rock album. Black Pearl is the closest to a rock song you get, but once again the production on it is so terrible that it loses most of it's edge. It all sounds like a compilation of songs for soundtracks or other albums. It never sounds like a proper album.

The only really good thing about the 18 era was the artwork. The 18 era was really the beginning of the end when it comes to Bryan Adams making rock albums. While Waking Up The Neighbours still had a little edge, 18 just has zero.

Salaam Aleikum,
Sebastiaan
See, what you criticise about "18" I would all say about "On A Day Like Today". A few decent tracks: On A Day Like Today, When You're Gone, How Do You Feel Tonight, Fearless, Cloud Number Nine. And even they don't really hit the nail on the head. The rest just sounds like demos, B-sides, session leftovers to me, with a huge lack of inspiration and the lack of attempt to make something more with the ideas than just the ordinary, standard 3 minute formula - like giving each song a personal note, a unique flavour, as to some point it was done on "18".
The spanish guitars on "Have You Ever", the harp groove on "Do To You", the epic dreamy atmoshphere of your beloved "Let's Make A Night", the pro-tooled "Star", the energetic rock of "We're Gonna Win", the dark groove of "Black Pearl". The range of styles is more deverse, the lyrics also have more consistence than the follow-up. And it DOES sound like an album to me, not a collection of single songs. Don't undertand why you dislike the drums and the guitars, to me they sound just fine. Not that it couldn't have been done with more edge, but it doesn't bother me too. "We're Gonna Win" always had a whole lot of edge to me, turn it up, you'll see. Also "Black Pearl", I think this laid back groove is quite fitting in the means of creating a 'swampy' atmosphere.

Maybe the lyrics on OADLT are not that cheesy, but not brilliant either. Lines like

"we're gonna make it home tonight, c'mon c'mon c'mon - everything's gonna be alright"

or

"getaway - ya know it's now or never
getaway - nobody lives forever"

or

"if I was blind you could make me see
if I was down you could comfort me"

are just lame reprises of chliches (and far far worse than anything on "18"). And you don't find anything much deeper on the album. And then I can't ignore the poorness of those lines, together with the music. OADLT almost all sounds like backing tracks, elevator music, just not exciting, moving. No dynamics, all so laid back, no good guitar work. On "18" on the other hand it's all quite decent. And Keith does play some nice licks and riffs.

Thinking about it, it's more the music than the lyrics that make me say "18" is a mature album. Ok, in some way I can't compare it to "Reckless", which is a killer. I don't know the "Into The Fire" album, and I don't know (yet) the bonus tracks you were talking of: Hey Elvis, Low Life. I know "If You Wanna Be Bad" only from Unplugged.
But still, for BA most of the lyrics I don't consider bad, though of course there are some cheesy lines and low points. Most of the time I find it quite convincing though, like "I'll Always Be Right There", with its awful "forever we will be - together a family" rhyme.
In fact, "Have You Ever", "Black Pearl", "We're Gonna Win", "Let's Make A Night" - they all work, though it might not be poetry.
Musically, the album as it is sounds really like a whole with different flavours, while OADLT just drowns in indifference. And I just give OADLT as an example because that fits your critics on "18", in my opinion.

In the end, I just like the album. I can't stand "Waking Up The Neigbours" nor "OADLT" as whole albums, only single songs, while "18" simply does the trick to me. "Room Service" was a bit better than "OADLT", though it's still far from being great, but a few really decent tracks.
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Last edited by Simon; 02-04-2009 at 03:20 PM..
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  #13  
Old 02-04-2009, 05:11 PM
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Haven't listened to Bryan Adam for years - consider him to be completely irrelevant now. maybe he just did too many fluffy movie soundtracks or something but he lost his edge a long, long time agao.

The last albuum I bought was On A Day Like Today and other than the title track, I thought it was mostly mediocre, and before that so was 18 as well.

I agree with what Seb says though - 18 actually appealed to me when I was about 18 - but it has no maturity to last any longer than that, and no tracks that really stand the test of time.

Last decent thing BA did was his unplugged album, and obviously even that doesn't rock by its very nature.

Simon, say for example we compare BA (definitely pop rock) to our discussion about Crush on the other thread. Put the two together and Crush (a definite pop rock record), for all its faults, completely blows BA's recent efforts out of the water.
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Last edited by crashed; 02-04-2009 at 05:13 PM..
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  #14  
Old 02-05-2009, 12:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crashed View Post
Simon, say for example we compare BA (definitely pop rock) to our discussion about Crush on the other thread. Put the two together and Crush (a definite pop rock record), for all its faults, completely blows BA's recent efforts out of the water.
Of course, I would never argue with that. "Crush" is one of my favourite albums of all time actually, if you have read my posts in the other thread. BA comes nowhere near that. I'm not the biggest BA fan, really, but when I'm a phase he does the trick for me. And then I just love "18". I never said it was as good as BJ. I argued more within the BA context itself.

Another reason why I might like "18", is because it fits a phase of really good, mature music, which was released in 1995/96. Most people here would count TD as BJs most mature album, and it totally fitted its time. Compare it to albums that other artists released in those two years. Like the Scorpions and their "Pure Instinct". It doesn't fit the rest of their catalogue, it has many ballads, acoustic guitars and different songwriting etc., an overall melancholy feel, in a similar way that TD did for BJ. Or take Joan Osborne's "Relish". Albums with a somehow similar spirit, at least in the context of the artists catalogues. Bryan Adams' "18" is somehow in that manner too.
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  #15  
Old 08-17-2009, 08:48 PM
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Just started listening to BA again after some time and I've got to say that I do like the 18 record a lot, too. It might not be the big rock from the 80s but it has it's very own atmosphere.
Though it's not as riff-based as Reckless it's still a very good Pop-rock record to me.
Starting to collect his b-sides now.

I also think that his MTV Unplugged may be the best from this series.
Great arrangements, great band and Bryan's voice in awesome shape.

On the other hand I read that he can't stand video's of his shows on youtube, which is why he banned all the fanmade ones from there.
He did the same with every single bootleg of his shows on the internet.
Not really fan-friendly.

Still great music to me.
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  #16  
Old 08-17-2009, 09:04 PM
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I like the guy. My favourite record is "Waking Up The Neighbours". Unplugged is up there too. I can't get into the newer stuff that well...
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Old 08-17-2009, 09:15 PM
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I like the guy. My favourite record is "Waking Up The Neighbours". Unplugged is up there too. I can't get into the newer stuff that well...
Yeah, I've got my problems with the albums since 18 til I die, too.
Though the production is great IMO there are too many fillers on each of them.

Plus I'm missing Jim Vallance as a songwriting partner. He was a genious.
Sadly he retired from the business after writing with Bryan one last time for his latest album 11.
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  #18  
Old 08-17-2009, 09:28 PM
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He's writing a new record btw, has been in the studio since May.

I know it's nothing to get excited about but figured I'd let ya'll know.

Although at least it means a new tour

And gotta agree with Unplugged being awesome. I LOVE IT. Someone on here recommended me to get the DVD as well but I can't find it anywhere - I've only seen 5 copies of it and they were all in Edinburgh at the same store. I didn't buy it, and I forgot why

Shame cos I've wanted that for a damn long time.
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Old 08-21-2009, 03:06 PM
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Did anyone in the UK go to his acoustic tour this year?

I was so damn close to going but Bruce and Alice Cooper snapped up my money.

I have no regrets but I'm still regretting it. If that makes sense. Which it does not.
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  #20  
Old 08-23-2009, 11:17 PM
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Easily 1 of the best singer/song writers to come out of the 80s!! Great voice and thought his Live show last October was awersome.

Here's my faves:

Cuts Like A Knife,Reckless,In To The Fire,LIVE LIVE LIVE,Waking Up The Neighboors and Un-Plugged.
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