Paul Di Filippo (pgdf) wrote in theinferior4,
Paul Di Filippo
pgdf
theinferior4

Four Populaires: surprisingly listenable!



I promised to listen to this album and report, and an Inferior 4 never goes back on his (or her) word!

The album is recorded live, with flawless technical expertise. The applause sounds sincere, albeit decorous.

The track lineup:

SIDE 1
BUT NOT FOR ME
DON'T GO TO STRANGERS
WHEN I TAKE MY SUGAR TO TEA
FASCINATION
CHICAGO
MA, HE'S MAKING EYES AT ME
IF YOU KNEW SUSIE
THAT'S ALL

SIDE 2
ESO BESO
YELLOW BIRD
JOSEPHINE
STELLA BY STARLIGHT
AN AFFAIR TO REMEMBER
ME AND MY SHADOW
SERENATA
YA NO TE QUIERO MAS
MARINA

The instruments are horns, guitar, drums and accordian, uncredited as to which band member plays which: Bill Sloane, Kenny Martin, Bill Walz, or Chuck Bills. Some songs feature solo voice, others harmony.

What we have here are some consumate professionals doing classy arrangements to provide mild entertainment. Nothing is overblown or campy or schmaltzy. Even the dreaded accordian remains subdued and engaging. The singer's voice is a pleasant tenor, a bit Mel Torme, a bit Tony Bennett. The harmonizing is well-done. While no great emotions are invested in the songs--this was dinner-club music, remember, meant to be half-listened to by boozing vacationers--a selection like "Yellow Bird" is freighted with appropriate melancholy. For changeup purposes, instrumentals are scattered amongst the vocal numbers. There's no stage banter or chatter.

A night's work for a night's pay, a chance to show off one's honed chops, a spot of good-natured brightness in the lives of some people looking to forget the humdrum.

A not unhonorable accomplishment.

Posted by Paul DiFi.
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