Sunday, February 24, 2008

504. Donald Fagen - The Nightfly (1982)

Track Listing

1. IGY
2. Green Flower Street
3. Ruby Baby
4. Maxine
5. New Frontier
6. Nightfly
7. Goodbye Look
8. Walk Between Raindrops


Well, this was a strange album for several reasons, firstly it's lyrics and concept are brilliant, Donald Fagen writes brilliantly just as he did for Steely Dan and there is much of the same feel here, the concept of having songs about the 50's is also very well achieved. Unfortunately the music is quite dated even for 1982.

This sounds like a good Steely Dan album, and that is no bad thing, but it does jar a bit in the early 80's. It sounds slightly corny, but in a good way. And I think that's its good qualities greatly redeem its problems.

This is one of those albums that you need to let simmer in your mind, for some reason it only got to platinum in 2004, slow but steady wins the race. it's an album that people have kept buying since it came out but never in such spurts has to have made it a great hit. So if you want more Steely Dan this is definitely the place to come to. Otherwise I wouldn't necessarily bother.

Track Highlights

1. The Goodbye Look
2. New Frontier
3. Maxine
4. The Nightfly

Final Grade



From Wikipedia:

Several of the songs are about events and settings from the 1950s. "I.G.Y." is about the optimism of the International Geophysical Year, "New Frontier" is about a party held in a backyard nuclear bomb shelter ("It's just a dugout that my dad built/ In case the Reds decide to push the button down"). The title of the song refers to John F. Kennedy's 1960 "New Frontier" presidential campaign slogan. "The Goodbye Look" is about a revolution on a Caribbean island, possibly Cuba.

In the UK the album was certified Platinum in 2004, despite only reaching #44 on the charts following its release. It has also gone platinum in America. This relatively low-key but long-lived popularity led the Wall Street Journal to dub the album "one of pop music's sneakiest masterpieces" upon the release of a 25th anniversary edition of "The Nightfly" in late 2007

New Frontier:

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