Jules and the Polar Bears

Bad for Business

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Deemed not commercially viable and a bit on the weird side by the powers that be at Columbia Records in 1980, Bad for Business, the third album from Jules and the Polar Bears, remained in the Columbia vaults for 16 years before being issued in 1996. Bad for Business still seems somewhat quirky after all these years, although not really much more than its predecessor Fenetiks, with which it shares a similar sound thanks to Stephen Hague's keyboards.

The real treat in Columbia's decision to release the record is its batch of hook-laden tunes and the frenetic spurts of lyrics from Jules Shear. Songs such as the driving pop of "In Love With the Ballet" and the sweet but edgy "Only a Motion" show Shear to be in fine form on Bad for Business. This is a chance to further discover a terrific songwriter and one of the criminally overlooked bands of the late '70s.

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