Top positive review
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on July 14, 2003
Cat Stevens has, over the years, had a bad press. On his conversion to Islam, he repudiated all his recordings as Cat. Unfortunately there were many other critics who were happy to join in the frenzy of repudiating Cat Stevens albums. The most common criticism was that his most popular tunes sounded like nursery rhymes. Maybe that was born of jealousy at the sheer attractiveness of so many of his melodies.
In recent times, Cat has undergone a minor revival, partly triggered by the inclusion of 'The Wind' in the magnificent ALMOST FAMOUS movie, and partly due to the excellent remastering of all of his Island albums.
I have previously reviewed one of his greatest hits albums on amazon, and given it an unexceptional rating. But coming to 'Teaser ...' for the first time, I'm very favourably impressed by the quality and consistency of the album. The guitars come out of the remastering process particularly well.
The highlights for me are 'The Wind' and 'Moonshadow', both in much the same musical vein. I hadn't previously realised that Rick Wakeman played the piano on 'Morning has Broken', but in retrospect the piano noodlings are so obviously from the same hands that played 'The Six Wives of Henry VIII'.
There's plenty of evidence of Cat's religious uncertainty and pining, mixed in with some romantic soul-searching too. This may have been an album originally destined for 1970s UK bedsit-land, and today it remains a highly attractive, tuneful recording from a troubled artist that can equally be taken as summer's day entertainment.