This is a journey into sound.....
Ah the grandeur & diversity of the 1980's. The synthetic sounds of electronic keyboard heavy, make-up wearing men that left us all with the great smell of Aquanet & the sounds of many a one hit wonders. Some of the bands & songs of this decade of decadence are quite memorable while others well... not so much. Still I 'grew up' in the 80's so for better or worse that's MY decade. Some bands & their songs are near & dear to my heart. Huey Lewis & the News' album SPORTS was the first music I ever owned as an example. However, the album I will be discussing is from the latter part of the decade.
In 1988 I was introduced to as I felt something new via my cousin Kody over at his families place. This new band called themselves Living Colour & the album he played for me was called VIVID. Up to that point in my sheltered rural life I had never heard anything like it. It was an 80's motif but not in the predictable sense. This album was heavy, in your face music. Political, emotional, & soulful. For me this album represents a few things. One, virtuosity of musicianship & two, music about real issues from a specific point of view. Four musicians; Corey Glover on vocals. Muzz Skillings on bass. Will Calhoun on drums & Vernon Reid on guitar. Other than Eddie Van Halen I had never heard a guitar played like that before.
VIVID consists of 11 amazing tracks; 1. Cult of Personality. 2. I Want to Know. 3. Middle Man. 4. Desperate People. 5. Open Letter (to a landlord). 6. Funny Vibe. 7. Memories Can't Wait. 8. Broken Hearts. 9. Glamour Boys. 10. What's Your Favorite Color? (theme song). 11. Which Way to America?
I have lived with & listened to VIVID in many formats over the years. Cassette, CD & Vinyl. Love them all. The cassette version is my first love because it was my introduction. The CD because of its ability to perfectly demonstrate everything available to be heard. But the vinyl is special. Loud, clear, & full of the nuances that only the vinyl format can deliver. The subtle pops & crackling over the top of the music is killer for me. That's one of the reasons I dig vinyl so much. It's a natural part of the vinyl listening experience in my opinion.
Living Colour's VIVID is a masterpiece of 80's hard rock done extremely well. Catchy riffs, memorable lyrics, & vivid artwork make this album a must for rock music fans. If you get a 'funny vibe' someday in the near future listen to Living Colour's VIVID. You will not be disappointed. You may even go get your hair done!