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Album Review

Some bands make success look easy, others are walking illustrations of just how hard it can be, After the Fire fell into that latter category. Laser Love, their CBS debut album, chewed up five producers; their sophomore set, 80 F, was their second stab at a follow-up, the first -80F, was rejected. Batteries Not Included was comparatively hassle free, yet it was the least commercially successful of the three, even though AtF embarked on tours opening for ELO, Queen and Van Halen. Following that, the band promptly went into the studio and set to work on their fourth album, recording the demos that are featured here. CBS was happy, the band was not. Deeply in debt with no sign of relief in sight, musical differences reared their heads, as the bandmembers battled between pop and rock. In December, 1982, on-stage at the Dominion Theatre in London, AtF announced their breakup. Three months later, their cover of Falco's "Der Kommissar," recorded earlier in 1982, began soaring up the U.S. charts, finally stopping at a heartbreaking number five.

CBS's pleas to reform went unheeded, and thus AtF's final album was a posthumous career-spanning retrospective. One wonders why the label didn't just release these demos, they're certainly high-quality enough. If they had, "Young Love" was the perfect choice for a spin-off single in the States, with the poppy "Who Do You Think You Are" and "Step by Step" contenders for a follow-up. "Night Is Still Falling" had rock radio hit written all over it, while the romantic "Over and Over" was the obvious choice for a Christmas single. The rest of the set, especially the pair

of instrumentals, would have made excellent B-sides. Besides giving a much belated release to this never finished set, there's also a quartet of bonus tracks, including a vocal-less take of "It's Over" and two earlier recorded demos. AT2F is the perfect epitaph for a band who seemed unable to grasp success.


Formed: 1974 in England

Genre: Rock

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

After the Fire was originally formed in England in 1974 by keyboard player Peter Banks. This lineup disbanded a few years later, upon which point Banks re-formed the band with guitarist Andy Piercy, bass player Nick Battle, and drummer Ivor Twiddell. The new lineup played the London music scene and eventually became a favorite at the Marquee on London's Wardour Street. In 1978, the band cut their first album, Signs of Change, on their own Rapid label. Their musical style at the time sounded like...
Full bio
AT2F, After the Fire
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  • 8,99 €
  • Genres: Rock, Music
  • Released: 06 November 2006

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