Status Quo

Ain't Complaining

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With the strength of In the Army Now still fresh in the ears, Status Quo's next album surely ranks among their most disappointing, a directionless hodgepodge that was, contrarily, explained away by the band as an attempt to do something different, and appeal to a wider fan base. Forget it! Twelve songs might have represented the band's most generous new offering since Rockin' All Over the World, and "Ain't Complaining" itself is a primo Quo rocker. But from there on in, the album simply swerves across the sonic palette and winds up with its fingers in so many pies that you could be listening to a late-'80s compilation album. Starship, Phil Collins, the theme to Miami Vice, all are granted a stylistic look-in as the album meanders on, while the maddening catchiness of "Burning Bridges" could have been the Chieftains for all it had to do with the Quo we loved. Rossi later admitted that the album's problems were due in part to record company interference, but more to his own lack of interest in the proceedings. He would not, he swore, make that mistake again. [The 2006 Universal International edition includes bonus tracks.]

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