Godley & Creme

Birds of Prey

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The least successful inclusion in the Godley & Creme catalog, Birds of Prey finds the duo stripping back the crazier idiosyncrasies that made its earlier albums so intriguing, and working more in the realm of melody and, dare one say it, easy listening. Lyrically they remain as offbeat as ever, and an evening with the Birds of Prey lyric sheet will send you scrabbling to hear the music. Bad move. "Save Me a Mountain," the album's almost-hit single, is a saccharin lament that might be directly descended from 10cc's "Brand New Day" and "Don't Hang Up," but lacks both the melodic and the emotional punch that made those earlier ballads work so well, while "Samson," "My Body the Car," and "Madame Guillotine" simply sound as though they were recorded the moment the ideas first stumbled into view, as opposed to waiting around to make sure the songs were even worth pursuing. So a major disappointment from a duo that was traditionally so reliable and, if you do buy the album today, it'll be for the bonus tracks -- no, not the dance mix of "Samson," but for the sheer madness of "Welcome to Breakfast Television," a topical B-side at the time of its release, and a self-fulfilling prophecy that could not have been proved more accurate.

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