|1. Town Of Plenty|
|2. A Word In Spanish|
|3. Mona Lisas And Mad Hatters (Part Two)|
|4. I Don't Wanna Go On With You Like That|
|5. Japanese Hands|
|6. Goodbye Marlon Brando|
|7. The Camera Never Lies|
|8. Heavy Traffic|
|9. Poor Cow|
|10. Since God Invented Girls|
|11. Rope Around A Fool|
|12. I Don't Wanna Go On With You Like That (Shep Pettibone Mix)|
|13. I Don't Wanna Go On With You Like That (Just Elton And His Piano Mix)|
|14. Moda Lisas And Mad Hatters (Part Two) (The Renaissance Mix)|
While I had long heard that REG STRIKES BACK was near the bottom of Elton's best, I was encouraged to buy it for "I Don't Wanna Go On With You Like That", which I consider to be one of his best works even from a fallow period in his career. Sure enough, Elton sounds vocally invigorated on this song, growing into the deeper-textured voice that either came as a result of the surgery or just the passing years. Also, while Elton may have been playing more keyboards than actual piano by this time, this song is enough to make one admit that the man could still play! The public seemed to agree for "I Don't Wanna Go On With You Like That" peaked at an impressive #2, becoming his highest-charting hit in over a decade.
Commercially, that was perhaps the extent of REG STRIKES BACK's success, although one more single did manage to chart somewhat high. "A Word In Spanish" is another song that Elton's fans don't quite rank high on their lists, and granted, it's not that stellar.Read more ›
At the height of personal problems, Elton, once again, has risen to the occassion. If he had continued to put out poor product like 1985's Ice on Fire and it's follow-up, Leather Jackets, it could have been dooms day for the English piano player. Instead, what he delivers here isn't necessarily his best album, but certainly a turn in the right direction.
The album cover explains it all: in the midst of the crazy and tackiest 70s and 80s stage costumes, stand little Elton, or in this case Reg, his real name. It seems as if an awakening of sorts had dawned on him - get rid of the excess baggage and get down to business and make a fun rock album. And that's what he and lyricist Bernie Taupin do. So, does the music live up to all of the expectations?
Starting with Town of Plenty, Elton sings with utmost conviction on a song about the media and the constant struggle fame brings. The music is pretty shallow however and ultimately goes no where. Plus, Taupin's lyric is very difficult to sing along with. But the band and particularly the backing vocals, try hard to make you enjoy it. The next song, A Word In Spanish, is a beautiful ballad that has a terrific guitar solo by Davey Johnstone. This was the second single from the release and though it peaked in the Top 20, it deserved a place in the Top 10.Read more ›