Black Rose Import
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Originally Released in 1980, this Record Reflects Cher's Then-Fascination with Straight-Ahead Rock Music. She Served as the Front Woman for the Band of the Album's Title (Black Rose) and Accordingly Carried Them. Includes the Cher-Gems "Young and Pretty", "Never Should've Started" and Six More.
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"Never Should've Started" kicks the record off to a good start, demonstrating promise in the songwriting. Right away, it is clear that Cher is in rocker mode - she adds a nice rasp to her voice now and then and sing-screams many lines to suit the style, doing so exceptionally well. "Julie" is weaker but still likable, and Cher means business - beware the occasional profanity on this record, beginning with this track. The next few songs are filler and have yet to excite me to any degree. "You Know It", as I mentioned before, is a strong track and Cher and Les wrap their harmonies around one another beautifully. It's got a shuffle-type tempo and could easily have been a Fleetwood Mac song. "Young and Pretty", in my opinion, is the highlight of the record - not that it's an outstanding song, but Cher sings it with superb emotion and conviction. At first it bothered me that most of the song was sung in a low vocal register, but it grew on me and only added to the dramatic flare of the track. The record closes with "Fast Company", with a nice guitar riff, but the song itself is nothing to write home about.
It's easy to see why Cher was so musically satisfied with her Black Rose experience - she is very, very good at singing the style (what CAN'T she sing? Folk, Pop, Hard Rock, AOR, Southern Rock, Dance, A/C, wow!) and brings nearly all of the quality to this album. A nod to Les Dudek for his talents - it's too bad we couldn't have heard more from him.