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Badfinger|Straight Up (Remastered 2010 / Deluxe Edition)

Straight Up (Remastered 2010 / Deluxe Edition)

Badfinger

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Straight Up winds up somewhat less dynamic than No Dice, largely because that record alternated its rockers, pop tunes, and ballads. Here, everything is at a similar level, as the ballads are made grander and the rockers have their melodic side emphasized. Consequently, the record sounds more unified than No Dice, which had a bit of a split personality. Todd Rundgren's warm, detailed production makes each songwriter sound as if he was on the same page, although the bonus tracks -- revealing the abandoned original Geoff Emerick productions -- prove that the distinctive voices on No Dice were still present. Frankly, the increased production is for the best, since Badfinger sounds best when there's as much craft in the production as there is in the writing. Here, there's absolutely no filler and everybody is in top form. Pete Ham's "Baby Blue" is textbook power-pop -- irresistibly catchy fuzz riffs and sighing melodies -- and with its Harrison-esque slide guitars, "Day After Day" is so gorgeous it practically aches. "Perfection" is an unheralded gem, while "Name of the Game" and "Take It All" are note-perfect pop ballads. Tom Evans isn't as prolific here, but the one-two punch of "Money" and "Flying" is the closest Straight Up gets to Abbey Road, and "It's Over" is a fine closer. Still, what holds the record together is Joey Molland's emergence as a songwriter. His work on No Dice is enjoyable, but here, he comes into his own with a set of well-constructed songs. This fine songwriting, combined with sharp performances and exquisite studio craft, make Straight Up one of the cornerstones of power-pop, a record that proved that it was possible to make classic guitar-pop after its golden era had passed.
© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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Straight Up (Remastered 2010 / Deluxe Edition)

Badfinger

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1
Take It All (Remastered 2010)
00:04:26

Pete Ham, ComposerLyricist - Badfinger, MainArtist - Todd Rundgren, Producer

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

2
Baby Blue (Remastered 2010)
00:03:36

Pete Ham, Composer - Badfinger, MainArtist - Todd Rundgren, Producer - Ben Ottewell, Author

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

3
Money (Remastered 2010)
00:03:30

Badfinger, MainArtist - Tom Evans, ComposerLyricist - Todd Rundgren, Producer

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

4
Flying (Remastered 2010)
00:02:35

Joey Molland, ComposerLyricist - Badfinger, MainArtist - Tom Evans, ComposerLyricist - Todd Rundgren, Producer

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

5
I'd Die Babe (Remastered 2010)
00:02:33

GEORGE HARRISON, Producer - Joey Molland, ComposerLyricist - Badfinger, MainArtist

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

6
Name Of The Game (Remastered 2010)
00:05:20

Pete Ham, ComposerLyricist - GEORGE HARRISON, Producer - Badfinger, MainArtist

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

7
Suitcase (Remastered 2010)
00:02:53

GEORGE HARRISON, Producer - Joey Molland, ComposerLyricist - Badfinger, MainArtist

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

8
Sweet Tuesday Morning (Remastered 2010)
00:02:29

Joey Molland, ComposerLyricist - Badfinger, MainArtist - Todd Rundgren, Producer

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

9
Day After Day (Remastered 2010)
00:03:09

Pete Ham, ComposerLyricist - GEORGE HARRISON, Producer - Badfinger, MainArtist

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

10
Sometimes (Remastered 2010)
00:02:51

Joey Molland, ComposerLyricist - Badfinger, MainArtist - Todd Rundgren, Producer

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

11
Perfection (Remastered 2010)
00:05:08

Pete Ham, ComposerLyricist - Badfinger, MainArtist - Todd Rundgren, Producer

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

12
It's Over (Remastered 2010)
00:03:33

Badfinger, MainArtist - Tom Evans, ComposerLyricist - Todd Rundgren, Producer

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

13
I'll Be The One (Remastered 2010)
00:02:52

Pete Ham, ComposerLyricist - Geoff Emerick, Producer - Joey Molland, ComposerLyricist - Mike Gibbins, ComposerLyricist - Badfinger, MainArtist - Tom Evans, ComposerLyricist

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

14
Name Of The Game (Earlier Version / Remastered 2010)
00:04:23

Pete Ham, ComposerLyricist - Geoff Emerick, Producer - Badfinger, MainArtist - Harry Robinson, Recording Arranger, AssociatedPerformer

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

15
Baby Blue (US Single Mix / Remastered 2010 / Bonus Track)
00:03:36

Pete Ham, ComposerLyricist - Badfinger, MainArtist - Todd Rundgren, Producer

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

16
Baby Please (Bonus Track)
00:03:04

Pete Ham, ComposerLyricist - Geoff Emerick, Producer - Joey Molland, ComposerLyricist - Mike Gibbins, ComposerLyricist - Badfinger, MainArtist

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

17
No Good At All (Bonus Track)
00:02:08

Geoff Emerick, Producer - Badfinger, MainArtist - Tom Evans, ComposerLyricist

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

18
Sing For The Song (Bonus Track)
00:03:19

Geoff Emerick, Producer - Badfinger, MainArtist - Tom Evans, ComposerLyricist

(C) 2010 Apple Corps LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2010 EMI Records Ltd ℗ 2010 Apple Corps Ltd

Album Description

Straight Up winds up somewhat less dynamic than No Dice, largely because that record alternated its rockers, pop tunes, and ballads. Here, everything is at a similar level, as the ballads are made grander and the rockers have their melodic side emphasized. Consequently, the record sounds more unified than No Dice, which had a bit of a split personality. Todd Rundgren's warm, detailed production makes each songwriter sound as if he was on the same page, although the bonus tracks -- revealing the abandoned original Geoff Emerick productions -- prove that the distinctive voices on No Dice were still present. Frankly, the increased production is for the best, since Badfinger sounds best when there's as much craft in the production as there is in the writing. Here, there's absolutely no filler and everybody is in top form. Pete Ham's "Baby Blue" is textbook power-pop -- irresistibly catchy fuzz riffs and sighing melodies -- and with its Harrison-esque slide guitars, "Day After Day" is so gorgeous it practically aches. "Perfection" is an unheralded gem, while "Name of the Game" and "Take It All" are note-perfect pop ballads. Tom Evans isn't as prolific here, but the one-two punch of "Money" and "Flying" is the closest Straight Up gets to Abbey Road, and "It's Over" is a fine closer. Still, what holds the record together is Joey Molland's emergence as a songwriter. His work on No Dice is enjoyable, but here, he comes into his own with a set of well-constructed songs. This fine songwriting, combined with sharp performances and exquisite studio craft, make Straight Up one of the cornerstones of power-pop, a record that proved that it was possible to make classic guitar-pop after its golden era had passed.
© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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