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Glass Houses Original recording remastered, Enhanced

4.9 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Nov. 10 1998)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Enhanced, Original recording remastered
  • Label: Sony
  • ASIN: B00000DDMH
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #63,318 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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1. You May Be Right
2. Sometimes A Fantasy
3. Don't Ask Me Why
4. It's Still Rock And Roll To Me
5. All For Leyna
6. I Don't Want To Be Alone
7. Sleeping With The Television On
8. C'etait Toi (You Were The One)
9. Close To The Borderline
10. Through The Long Night

Product Description


Billy Joel has always wanted to be a rocker. That he made his name on piano ballads and was relegated to soft rock radio even disturbs him, if recent interviews are to be believed. For 1980's Glass Houses, Joel opted to take on the new wave with his usual arsenal of classic rock poses. With his knack for melody in place, he connected immediately with a string of hits he never surpassed. "You May Be Right," "Sometimes a Fantasy," "It's Still Rock n' Roll to Me" and "Sleeping with the Television On" are as powerful and succinct as Joel gets. --Rob O'Connor --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Format: Audio CD
In the spring of 1980, Billy Joel was riding a wave of popularity. His 1977 breakthrough, "The Stranger", led to four hit songs and substantial critical praise. The 1978 follow-up, "52nd Street", produced another 3 hit singles, spent 8 weeks atop the Billboard album charts and won a Grammy for Album of the Year. Nobody would have expected him to make significant changes to his style at this point in his career - why mess with success? And with a public looking for more of the same, Billy instead threw a monkey wrench into everything with this stunning shift of direction.

From the opening sound effect of broken glass followed by a sudden barrage of guitars and a lyric and sound that plays tribute to punk, fans knew right away that this was not going to be the same old sound. "You May Be Right" remains one of the artist's most popular songs, frequently and famously covered regularly in 1990's concerts by Garth Brooks. The next song, "Sometimes A Fantasy", throws more caution to the wind, opting for a new-wave sound powered by a rockabilly vocal delivery and powerhouse synthesizers. A calypso sound punctuates "Don't Ask Me Why", which was close to some previous styles but still feels fresh here. Billy's first #1 single, "It's Still Rock & Roll To Me", throws itself fully into rockabilly and pays off handsomely. The first half of the album concludes with one of Joel's darkest tunes, "All For Leyna", exploring how much he would take from a woman who seemingly is eating him alive.

While the first half of the disc features all of the hits, several other songs stand out in the second half, notably the syncopated rhythms and hopeful lyrics of "I Don't Want To Be Alone" and the edgy rock of "Close To The Borderline".
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Format: Audio CD
Back in the December of 1980, this album was given to me as a holiday gift. Strangely enough, it wasn't until a prolonged illness in Fall 1982 that I actually listened to the album (guess I got bored of Simon & Garfunkel, the Beatles, and the few selections of Bach and Vivaldi I was listening to back then...) - and realized that there was, in fact, other music out there - and in the case of this album, there was other really, really great music out there...In fact, within 12 months I was listening to the radio, digging through my dad's (and even my sister's) record collection for new and varied music.
But, as usual, I digress. "Glass Houses" is one of Billy Joel's two masterpiece albums. Even now, on listening to this album after having been almost complete jaded on Billy Joel's albums, there are really no songs here that I don't like. Almost every song on this album is a classic.
Highlights? As with any album which I deem to be a masterpiece (and there aren't a whole lot of those around), every song here is a highlight, just about. Favorites include the funny and cynical "You May Be Right", the concise and catchy hit "It's Still Rock 'N Roll To Me", and the urgent lyrics and rocking piano of "All For Leyna". Maybe my favorite song on the album is "I Don't Want To Be Alone" which I love for its nice story of an underdog's efforts in love and for its nice back-up harmonies. "Close To The Borderline" is the closest Billy Joel ever comes to hard rock - and while it's not exactly heavy metal or anything, it is melodic and satisfying.
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Format: Audio CD
This was Billy Joel's Rock album and the thing about his music is it's very atmospheric. Firstly, You may be right is as usual with Billy, about love but also his unusual personality, reflected in the cover phoot's. It's a straight-forward rocker. Sometimes a fantasy is the sort of rocker John Travolta would have sung, and it is a rocker but has an unusual instrumental bit, that sounds like he's using bouzuki's! correct me if I'm wrong. There's also a new age element to it. Don't ask me why is a typical Joel ballad, pretty good but I don't know why the ghosts will be killed "in the classic style"? It's still rock and roll to me is rock n roll and has a saxaphone instrumental. All for leyna is a rock/new wave love song mixing loud guitar, honky-tonk piano and a girl who doesn't want him [the only girl he wants]I dont want to be alone is a typical Joel love song, as is sleeping with the television on, easy-listening and atmospheric, as is Cetait toi [you were the one] adn as the name suggests, he tries singing in French, which I think is not too bad at all, but the miserable lyrics make me wish he'd sung it all in French. Close to the borderline is a depressing punk song. Through the long night is a bit folky, with acoustic guitar, good harmonising and piano. All in all, a good album, enjoyable and light-hearted [mostly]
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Format: Audio CD
Singer/songwriter Billy Joel began the 80's with Glass Houses, an album that has the artist veer away from the reflective ballads of the past, for a "harder" sound. The end result is a solid effort that features Joel letting loose and having fun.
As it turns out, this "change" ended up being a good move as the new decade started. The recording features a few now classic songs from the "piano man" The music has a lot of energy that is maintained throughout. "You May Be Right", "It's Still Rock 'N Roll To Me", "Don't Ask Me Why", "Sometimes A Fantasy" and "Close To The Borderline", all showcase the fact that inside this man lies the heart of a would be rocker. Of course, Joel would continue to write in both styles, but by and large never lose his way. His music stays very consistant.
The CD has 10 tracks, a running time of 35:07, and is highly recommended
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