Quireboys

This Is Rock 'N' Roll

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Some artists refuse to change with the times, and that isn't necessarily a bad thing. Jazz great Phil Woods, for example, is an unapologetic hard bopper who excels by sticking with what he does best -- he was never an innovator, but he's superb at what he does. And sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar is such a master of traditional Indian music that one can hardly fault him for not abandoning ragas and devoting all of his time to bhangra and contemporary Indian pop. If it isn't broke, don't fix it, and for the London Quireboys, that means sticking with the type of early-'70s-minded rock & roll and hard rock that put them on the map. Although This Is Rock 'N' Roll was recorded in 2001 and released in 2002, the album sounds like it could have been recorded 30 years earlier. The Quireboys have not changed with the times, and This Is Rock 'N' Roll is totally oblivious to the alternative rock trends of the '90s and early 2000s. Do rugged, gritty, blues-based tracks like "Show Me What You Got" and "Turn Away" sound dated? Yes, but dated in the best sense of the word; dated as in having an undying passion for the classic sounds of Rod Stewart and the Faces, and Exile on Main St.-era Rolling Stones. Because the Quireboys have been through so many personnel changes since the '80s, their albums haven't always been consistent. This Is Rock 'N' Roll, however, is among their more consistent, focused and inspired efforts. A Little Bit of What You Fancy remains the Quireboys' best release -- that is the album to acquire if you are making your first Quireboys purchase -- but This Is Rock 'N' Roll is nothing to be ashamed of.

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