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Beautiful Friction

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Album Review

From the return of Dan K. Brown — the bassist on all their classic efforts from Reach the Beach (1983) to Ink (1991) — to its George Underwood cover art (the painter whose work adorned Reach the Beach and Phantoms), Beautiful Friction is a return to form for the Fixx, the synth-pop-but-almost-prog-rock group who made socially aware angst fly up the charts in the '80s with "Red Skies," "One Thing Leads to Another," and "Saved by Zero." This reunion effort is without a surefire hit like those, and at first listen, it is a bit light on hooks, but lead single "Anyone Else" is strong enough to beckon any longtime fan's return, and the skeletal, funky workout called "Girl with No Ceiling" brings to mind the Phantoms era — kinetic in an "Are We Ourselves" style. While that’s all good news, the real surprise here is how Beautiful Friction builds, from the first half's set of politically minded, Occupy Movement-admiring prog for the people, to the second half's blast of the Fixx as quirky new wave attack unit, featuring a whip-smart guitarist (Jamie West-Oram), a keyboard whiz (Rupert Greenall), a propelling drummer (Adam Woods), and a reliable, Bill Wyman-esque bassist (Brown). From the whirlwind "Follow That Cab" to the slow-rolling, life-affirming closer "Small Thoughts," vocalist Cy Curnin leads the band on something akin to a mini-Fixx concert that's alive and familiar in feel, even when the material is new. Repeat listens make that initial uphill climb a richer, more purposeful experience, and with everything feeling vital past the halfway point, Beautiful Friction is a win-WIN for fans.

Customer Reviews

Just great music!!!!!! A must have album…..

I am so glad that they came back to release new material and this new music worth the wait. Every song in this album is great. Awesome lyrics and familiar sounds combined with a modern feel. Definitely my new favorite and for some time I am sure.

Wow impressive album

Anyone else is an unbelievable song. For those who have not had a chance this band is simply fantastic to see live. The album is very good if not great. If this band comes to your town pay whatever and check them out, probably one of the 5 best bands I have seen live and I go to a lot of concerts.

Return to greatness

I am so happy about this new album. I admit, I was aprehensive as to what the Fixx would turn out - and they have set me straight.

this is really one of their best efforts. The playing is tremendous, the voice is strong and the lyrics are thoughtful.

Shaman. That song alone is worth it. It is just a fantastic tune. I am wearing out this music at home and in the car. Just buy it - you will not be disappointed.

Biography

Formed: 1980

Genre: Rock

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

A London-based new wave group that managed to sustain a successful career in America for several years in the mid-'80s, the Fixx always flirted with the mainstream with their catchy, keyboard-driven pop. Formed by college friends vocalist/keyboardist Cy Curnin and drummer Adam Woods in the early '80s, the pair advertised in the music press for additional members; the remaining members of the group -- guitarist Jamie West-Oram, keyboardist Rupert Greenall, and bassist Charlie Barret -- all responded...
Full Bio
Beautiful Friction, The Fixx
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