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Album Review

Most bands usually wait two or three albums before the "big statement," but this is the Mission. Sure, their debut was well received (at least by fans and record buyers) and was full of big, dramatic moments and over the top production, but nothing would equal the band's reach on its follow-up, Children. Kicking off with one of the longest fade-ins in rock history, Children is a sprawling (hell, to not call any album that starts out with a seven-plus-minute "intro" song sprawling is just wrong), larger-than-the-sum-of-its-parts affair, with multi-layered arrangements, numerous strings, vocals, guitars, and other instruments on every track, and a indescribable feel that just makes the album seem much longer than it really is. The rough edges are smoothed out, and Wayne Hussey's 12-string sounds cleaner and more shimmery than before. As for the songs themselves, the singles "Tower of Strength" and "Kingdom Come" obviously stand out, but "Fabienne," "Heat," "Child's Play," and "Wing and a Prayer" still rock (albeit in a rather buried-in-production kind of way) and "Black Mountain Mist" has an unmistakable Led Zeppelin feel. Speaking of Led Zeppelin, it's really no wonder that this time the Mission let their once subdued love of the rock legends runneth over — John Paul Jones was brought in to produce. The man who gave shape to Jimmy Page's more sprawling (there's that word again) epics as bassist and main arranger for Led Zep, Jones not only gives the Mission credibility in the act of bald-faced homage, but gives them a more mature, polished sound, ironing out their changes and shifts, resulting in a sound that is considerably more advanced than that of their previous work. The album is not without flaws, however. "Breathe," an interlude, feels a bit tacked on, and the cover of Aerosmith's "Dream On" is a questionable choice, to say the least. Some versions of the LP didn't have this track, and it's arguable that this one should have been left on the B-side pile. But the biggest flaw of the record is not in the substance as much as in the interpretation of the music itself. On Children, the Mission are big, dramatic, and grandiose: the very things that critics made their names giving the band a hard time for. But, so what? The Mission were a big, dramatic, grandiose band whose members weren't afraid to wear their hearts on their sleeves. Children is the proof of that, for sure.

Customer Reviews

Could never be 5 with that Aerosmith cover

Firstly, let me say that I love early Aerosmith and Dream On is one of, if not my favourite track. Therefore, to hear The Mission and in particular Wayne Hussey's vocals butcher such a classic song is a tradgedy to say the least. I never thought a worse cover version could ever darken my ears (?), and in fact this was true for many years, until Will Young set a upon Light My Fire (hope Jim Morrisson has plenty of room to rotate in his coffin). But that travesty aside this is a very good album full of brooding lyrics and well crafted tunes. This is as good as The Mission gets. Its certainly the only album of theirs I bothered to upgrade from cassette (remember them?) to cd.

You gave me Heaven, and I promise you the Earth...

I have always wondered why everyone bangs on about how great "Tower of Strength" is (tis good though) when Heaven on Earth is a much better track and has more meaning for me. Just buy the album, sit back and listen, regress to the outcast adolescent who felt there was no future and gently remind them that it turned out reasonably well after all, and got better. Anyhoo, thanks iTunes. My cassette copy of this got chewed up long ago and I (and my wife) will appriciate the replacement.


The highlights on this simply brilliant album are as follows, Beyond The Pale, (MASTERPIECE) Heaven On Earth (MASTERPIECE) Tower Of Strength (MASTERPIECE) other great tracks like Kingdom Come (Forever And Again) and another beautiful track for me anyway, Black Mountain Mist. Like I've said I love The Mission and I'm not even a rocker or a goth. But this band just write awesome, truly epic, spectacular rock and romantic love ballads. They are one of my favourite bands, because they are pure and simply rock legends in my book anyway. MAGNIFICENT MISSION. ANYONE WHO KNOWS AND LOVES REAL MUSIC WILL KNOW WHAT I MEAN HERE????

Children, The Mission
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Customer Ratings