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The Police - Reggatta de Blanc (Cover Artwork)

The Police

The Police: Reggatta de BlancReggatta de Blanc (1979)
Universal Music Group

Reviewer Rating: 4
User Rating:


Contributed by: JohnGentileJohnGentile
(others by this writer | submit your own)

While the first Police album flirted with both commercial and punk sounds, the second one heads straight in the direction of mass appeal. Whether or not this choice was a financial or artistic one, this choice yielded some of the Police's most rhythm-oriented music, resulting in 42 minutes of solid .
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While the first Police album flirted with both commercial and punk sounds, the second one heads straight in the direction of mass appeal. Whether or not this choice was a financial or artistic one, this choice yielded some of the Police's most rhythm-oriented music, resulting in 42 minutes of solid grooves.

The album kicks off with the distinct brand of Police reggae, "Message in a Bottle." Washing the listener ashore with its catchy pulse, the song recounts Sting's cries for help. The album continues with the theme of struggle by presenting upbeat sounding songs with downtrodden lyrics. In "On Any Other Day," Sting recounts how everything is going wrong. On the slow groove "This Bed's Too Big Without You," a former lover is lamented.

While speed and power were the fuel that drove the first Police album, this one sustains itself on medium-tempo grooves which pull the listener along instead of driving from behind. This new strategy is both a benefit and detriment to the band. While playing at a slower pace, the band allowing the fullness of their sound and style to be appreciated, showing that they really do know how to write a good groove, the passion and angst from the first album is completely gone. While on Outlandos d'Amour the Police were young and hungry, it seems that in one short year they had grown to being full and incontent.

But this inability to get fired up is most effective in some spots. Were Sting to yell and scream for the whole album, his voice would surely get annoying. But, since he keeps it subdued for most of the album, when his voice does rise on "Does Everyone Stare," it is that much more effective. This song seems to be the apex of Police's grooviest songs, as it starts off simple and matures into a melancholy toe-tapper.

As the Police became more and more popular they began to slow down the music with this album starting the trend. While later day Police songs seem to meander, this album seems to slow down just enough to allow the songs to breath without wheezing. Although their early fire is gone, Reggatta de Blanc allows the Police to show they know reggae as well as they know punk. It also shows that they are not content restricting themselves to either. So, in this evolution they lose a little bit of what made them special, but they display the remainder in an uncluttered and pretty darn good exhibition.

 

 
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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
TommyPickles (August 9, 2008)

Amazing

patrickingeneral (June 7, 2007)

Got it on vinyl. This and Synchronicity are my favorite albums.

Anonymous (June 6, 2007)

the best police song.....cant stand losing you..

Archangel (June 6, 2007)

Score is for multiple appearances of the word "groove" in this review.

Anonymous (June 6, 2007)

This is the one that has "Message in a Bottle". I remember Excel, a band from Venice, California, covered this song on their Joke's on You album.

Check out the review of their album:
http://www.punknews.org/review/6357

rejectedbyrequest (June 6, 2007)

boo The Police

strangenotes (June 5, 2007)

No.

Not-To-Regret (June 5, 2007)

This album and Zenyatta Mondatta are their best albums.
Why they departed from that sound for Ghost in the Machine is beyond me... damn new wave movement must have influenced them.
And for Feeding5000 who said that their non-singles, or album tracks are annoying, how about "This Bed's Too Big Without You" or "Does Everyone Stare" or "No Time This Time"... all awesome songs as far as I'm concerned.

coldwaffles (June 5, 2007)

Favorite album by one of my favorite bands.

Anonymous (June 5, 2007)

I love the Police, but face the facts, Scrantonicity is the better band.

- Kirby

Anonymous (June 5, 2007)

Awesome review. This is one of my favorite Police albums.

R3venge_Therapy (June 5, 2007)

Yo, feeding5000, don't hate on that song, that's one of my favorites. I pretty much agree with this review, but I don't think that they lost what made them special on their first album, but became something special starting with this album. Their first one is pretty spotty, but this is where they started to come into their own. Zenyata Mondatta is my favorite, and Ghost in the Machine is really excellent as well. As for Synchronicity...it's not as good as many critics would have you believe. But it's about on par with this record. Overall, the Police's catalog is pretty fucking awesome.

Anonymous (June 5, 2007)

"the Police to show they know reggae as well as they know punk"
i.e., not at all. The first Police album is reasonably okay, but I think the main problem with the band is that everything beyond their "hit songs" are incredibly irritating. Hell, even some of the "hits" are irritating - ever try listening to "De Do Do Do Da Da Da" or whatever more than once? Blecch.
-feeeding5000

Holy_Balls (June 5, 2007)

I can dig it

osloboditelj (June 5, 2007)

"The Police.. Know reggae as well as they know punk"

That is to say, they know how to turn it into awful commercial pap fit for one's mother. What a terrible band.

Anonymous (June 5, 2007)

possibly my favorite police album. the title track is unquestionably my favorite police song. both the hits are classics, the stewart songs are very entertaining. and there's just a great sense of mood pervading the album. overall very very strong.

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