Outlandos D'Amour Review

artist: Police date: 07/26/2008 category: compact discs
Police: Outlandos D'Amour
Release Date: Nov 1978
Label: A&M
Genres: Album Rock, New Wave, Pop/Rock, Post-Punk, Alternative Pop/Rock
Number Of Tracks: 10
The Police's 1978 debut, Outlandos d'Amour is by far their most direct and straightforward release.
 Sound: 9.3
 Lyrics: 9.3
 Overall Impression: 9
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reviews (3) 3 comments vote for this album:
overall: 8.7
Outlandos D'Amour Reviewed by: unregistered, on january 31, 2006
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Sound: Where do you start with the sound, the punks must've been shivering when the latest album from the wannabe-punk-rockers was released. It strange that the album didn't really do well until 'Every Breath You Take' was released years later. Andy Summers' held it all together (with the sound that is) he distored his amp for little-known gems like 'Next To You' (which was to be covered by the Offspring). 'Peanuts' the music written by Stewart Copeland and Gordon 'Sting' Summer shows that bass is a remarkable instrument, with an actual solo at the start of the song. How that English class must have feld to hear their English teacher Mr. Summer singing about going to kill himself because he's split up with his girlfriend. And that Copeland moved from the progressive rock band 'Curved Air' to the band that is aruged to be one of the best in the '80s? The band hadn't discovered their ballad-potential yet and stuff the album with the bassisit rock I've hear, with guitar only home in at intervels on the first tracks. 'So Lonley' is overdone in my opion, with the bass making disgusting notes over the guitar, with Summers first solo on the album lasting 1/3 of the song. It's too long, and when Sting raps his way through the middle-eight I was despserate for the chorus to come! 'Roxanne', 'Peanuts', 'Next To You' and 'Truth Hits Everybody' should be given their own album, with a diamond printed sleeve, best songwriting did in the seventies. // 9

Lyrics: I read this in another article, and I'm going to scream it here, it's Sting! How can you describe his writng? He has a voice that is the highest I've heard next to Bob Marley and James Blunt, it perfect copmplements the bass/guitar roots of the song. Lines that attention should be drawn to are: 'Take a look at my new toy, I'll blow your head in two (oh boy). Quite worrying for a well educated teavher to sing, don't you think? Oh, no, 'Hole In My Life' is playing as I type, the worst Police song you could find next to 'Mother' and 'Contact', Let's just say its 4 and a half minutes of my life I'll never get back. I mean, all he keeps reapeating is 'There's a hole in my life. ' All words were by Sting but Copeland worte the music for 'Peanuts'. // 9

Overall Impression: It's my favourite Police album, but some of the best songs on this album don't appear in 'The Very Best Of Sting And The Police' so it's a let-down knowing I can't putting songs like 'Peanuts' and 'Next To You' on my mp3, you know the feeling? No, you probably don't, anyway, I can't replace if it was lost, it was my mum's and its a record, so really dear to replace, and how do CD's compare? // 8

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overall: 10
Outlandos D'Amour Reviewed by: belavista man, on june 27, 2007
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Sound: The first album by the band has a magnificent and unique sound that I haven't heard from any other band since The Police emerged. There's a remarkable mix of white-reggae ("Roxanne", "Can't Stand Losing You") and general rock ("Truth Hits Everybody", "Next To You") on here, which works very well, considering that mixing two genres on one album is usually hard to do. I find it hard to believe that there were only three members of this gigantic Rock/Reggae band. They show with some ease just what a small band like The Police can produce, and had set an example for many other small, three man bands to follow (The Offspring for example, who covered The Police's "Next To You," the opening track of this album). Andy Summers plays his guitar parts extremely diligently, yet makes it look and sound easy. The chords of "Roxanne" and "Can't Stand Losing You" don't sound like much at first, but when you delve further into how the songs are written, you see just how much of a genius he is, through the progressions and through the chords themselves. The constant lead guitar in "So Lonely" has you captivated from start to finish, whether you like The Police or not. Stewart Copeland has a style of drumming which I can't seem to find with any other drummer in any other band. Most drummers would go crazy if they didn't have a big drum part, but Copeland hardly every has a massive drum part for the best part of the songs. The beat is very modest in most of the songs, and it works beautifully with the rest of the bands efforts. In other songs, Copeland has a much larger drum part which allows him to put his heart and soul into what he does, such as in "Peanuts", which has a memorable drum intro, up-tempo beat and plenty of fills. The impression I get is that Copeland can do drums for any style and make it work extremely well. Sting, I would say, is more of a master bassist than a master vocalist. Though he is brilliant at both, his bass playing stands out more to me than his singing. These days, a lot of people play these single note basslines with the odd little fill here and there, which go well with the songs they are written for, but show no skill or effort. Sting gives his bass playing everything he's got, and this is extremely apparant in Outlandos D' Amour. The basslines are a lot more complicated and well written than anything I've heard that's been written in my lifetime. Those who think that his playing isn't as up-to-scratch as I say it is, must listen to the basslines in "Can't Stand Losing You", "Hole In My Life" and "Masoko Tanga". // 10

Lyrics: Sting obviously knew that he had to make this album count as the band's step into stardom, and boy, did he make it count. The vocal's couldn't have been that much better than they were on here, both in melody and range. Sting has a vocal range which is good, yet still average, though he doesn't make this very apparant at all. His vocals never seem to go out of tune or time in any of the songs. There is magnificent melody and "texture" in his voice, which makes up for anything lost in his vocal range. He flaunts this vocal skill of this the most in songs such as "Born In The 50s" and "Next To You". // 10

Overall Impression: This has to be the best Police album that had been made. Regatta De Blanc, Zenyatta Mondatta, Ghost In The Machine and Synchronicity were all good productions but none of them could follow up Outlandos D'Amour, not in my oppinion. With the hits "Roxanne", "So Lonely" and "Can't Stand Losing You"; hidden gems like "Truth Hits Everybody", "Peanuts" and the live favourite, "Next To You", Outlandos comes head and shoulders above all other Police productions, with no exceptions. Those who don't see how revolutionary The Police were have to hear this album and see if thier minds are changed, because they were (and are) revolutionary and will never die out. // 10

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overall: 9
Outlandos D'Amour Reviewed by: Drifting182, on july 26, 2008
0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Sound: What do you get when you take an R&B guitarist, a jazz bassist and a prog-rock drummer? A punk-reggae band, of course! And indeed, the Police's 1978 debut Outlandos d'Amour is split between reggae shuffles and punkier numbers, with a few experimental pieces thrown in for good measure. Arguably the group's strongest studio effort, Outlandos gives us winner after winner (at least until towards the end). // 9

Lyrics: Things start off with "Next to You," the punkiest song the band ever performed if you disinclude their indie single "Fallout/Nothing Achieving," which is mediocre at best. "Next to You," however, has more hooks than most songs twice its length. The harmonies here really make it all worthwhile. "So Lonely" is the first reggae track here. Guitarist Andy Summers plays off Sting's groovy bass line in the verses, while the choruses are sped up to punk speed. "Roxanne" is perhaps the biggest hit here. Though often called reggae, Sting has always called it a "tango." Whatever it is, it succeeds as a pop song here. Arguably the catchiest song ever about a prostitute, Sting tells her to "put away the makeup" and "turn off the red light." The song's shuffle makes it one of the most distinctive numbers in the Police catalog. "Hole in My Life" is a rather experimental track. I'll admit I wasn't at all fond of it at first. This song's hook takes repeated listens to fully appreciate, as the melody here isn't as obvious as on the other tracks. Once you get into it, it's yet another winner. "Peanuts" is yet another punker. It's worth noting that Summers uses very minimalistic riffs in most of the punk numbers rather than the rapid downstrokes of most of his contemporaries. Then again, Summers (once a candidate to replace Mick Taylor in the Stones) was considerably more proficient on his instrument than the likes of, say, the Clash. "Peanuts" is just a fun song, with a madcap solo by Summers showing even a player as restrained as him was able to let loose and have fun once in a while. "Can't Stand Losing You" is straight-up reggae. Sting tells about an angry ex who eventually decides the only way out is suicide. Like "Roxanne," the subject matter wouldn't seem to be hit single material, but the melody here is almost morbidly happy and catchy. Summers gets an interesting guitar break before Sting declares his final intention. "Truth Hits Everybody" is yet another punk rocker. Note the bell effects and Summers' fast but tight strumming. "Born in the 50's" is the first truly weak track here, and that's largely because the chorus of "We were born in the 50s" is repeated so many times as to becoming annoying. Lines like "Would they drop the bomb on us when we made love on the beach?" make it all worth while though. "Be My Girl - Sally" starts off with an infectious riff, but soon gives way to a story about a blow-up doll, told in Andy Summers' thick accent and accompanied by seemingly random piano chords. It feels like this great riff was wasted on a track that quickly wears thin in the humor department. "Masoko Tango" is a showcase for Sting's virtuosity with the bass and Stuart Copeland's ability to effortlessy change time signatures. The instruments make it fun to listen to, though it's hardly an essential number. // 9

Overall Impression: The Police would abandon the punk overtones on their next album, leaving it as a largely reggae and pop-inspired affair. The Police would become increasingly tight (I avoid the word formulatic here) on future releases, and never again would they sound like they're having as much fun as they have here. The fun they have transfers to the listeners, making this a highly enjoyable and recommendable listen. // 9

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