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Don't Play Your Rock 'n' Roll to Me

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Album Review

Smokie's historical reputation as Northern England's answer to America's West Coast sound is done no disservice whatsoever by this sharp collection not of their all-time greatest hits, but of the songs and singles that stand the loudest in the memory of anybody who had an ear tuned to U.K. radio in the mid-'70s. The pick of the pack, as with any Smokie collection, has to be the sublime "Living Next Door to Alice," with the title track and "Changing All the Time" coming in a tie for close second. But, by drawing more from the band's own songwriting canon than from its original mentors, Nicky Chinn and Mike Chapman, the compiler allows such jewels as "Back to Bradford," "Poor Lady," and "I Can't Stay Here Tonight" to shine forth, and Don't Play Your Rock 'n' Roll to Me emerges as a pointed reminder of the days when the term "adult-oriented rock" didn't necessarily signify something you'd rush to the hills to avoid.

Biography

Formed: 1966

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Originally formed in Yorkshire, England, in 1966, Smokie hit the British pop charts several times during the late '70s with updated psychedelic pop, influenced by the band's stay on Mickie Most's Rak Records as well as the writers of most of the band's hit material, Rak's Nicky Chinn and Mike Chapman. Vocalist Chris Norman, bassist Terry Utley, guitarist Alan Silson, and drummer Ron Kelly had played in the Elizabethans, but formed the band Kindness in 1970. The quartet recorded many singles during...
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Don't Play Your Rock 'n' Roll to Me, Smokie
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