Friday, March 30, 2012

FDF Volume 3 Issue 260 - 'Til Tuesday - Welcome Home

Album – Welcome Home
Artist – Til Tuesday
Key Players – Michael Hausman – drums and percussion. Aimee Mann – vocals and bass. Robert Holmes – guitar and backing vocals. Joey Pesce – piano, synthesizers and backing vocals.
Produced By – Rhett Davies

Release Date – 1986

What caused me to blow off the dust? - For some reason when I do the Boston bands I get an immediate reaction. I've been pondering this one for a few weeks so now was just as good a time as any.

Overview – This is the second album from the Boston band 'Til Tuesday. It would peak at #49 on the Billboard album chart. The band formed in 1982 and won WBCN's “Rock and Roll Rumble” in 1983. The band would get a name for itself even further with the debut album and track “Voices Carry”. That song and subsequent video would help the band win “Best New Artist” on the MTV Video Music Awards. Even with this steam the band released this record, and although a critical hit, it hardly cracked the top 50 and the lead off single didn't break the top 20. The band would release a third record in 1988 but then call it quits.

FDF Comments (aka the songs) - The album opens with the track “What About Love” which would also be the first single off the ten track collection. It is a heavily keyboard based track. Holmes has a few guitar chords, but Pesce fills the track with various tones. Mann begins to sing. Her vocals are somewhat hushed, and deep, but she is able to hit some decent range on the track. Her bass playing is sadly not very high in the mix as the drums from Hausman seem to swell even more with the keyboards. Holmes has a short guitar solo after the second verse. It is not horribly long, or overly interesting actually, but it fits the track fine. The band runs through the chorus again before closing out the track. The second track, and second single from the record comes in “Coming Up Close”. A very pretty rock track with a ballad vibe to it. The guitars on the track are solid. Mann takes the first verse with not much other than the guitar from Holmes and a few long notes from Pesce. After she completes the first verse Hausman lightly taps off some rim shots. Come the chorus the full band comes in and Mann really shines. Her vocals are haunting but filled with an abundance of emotion. Holmes changes with acoustic and a little more electric for some bigger ringing notes. Pesce has a few nice piano runs during the chorus, but this is Mann's track. It just is. “On Sunday” has an 80's synth pop feel from the start. Hausman has a steady and basic drum track with Pesce playfully bouncing off various keyboard runs. Its gets a bit more of a rock feel as the chorus comes and Mann is in fine form with some really strong vocals. The vocal overdubs are also very strong. A solid track from the musical and vocal standpoint. Pesce blends sythns and piano as “Will She Just Fall Down” starts. Holmes strums a few guitar notes and then Mann begins the vocals. Again, the use of vocal over dubs is strong with Mann having seemingly the perfect voice to do this with. Only Pesce seems to veer outside the comfort zone of the track, but he never goes too far out. Pesce and Holmes are both right up in the mix at the start of “David Denies”. It calms down as Mann begins to sing and Hausman joins in on a more restrained tempo. Mann has a little more of a flutter to her voice as it builds to the chorus, but she gets a lot stronger as the chorus is sung. Holmes plays some soaring guitar lines and Pesce plays equally as strong. Sounding very “late 80's” synth pop the track “Lovers Day” gets started. Pesce finds a particular vibe on the keyboards and Holmes is left to chime a few sporadic guitar chords as Mann sings. The urgency at the end is strong with her repeating the line about urgency. We slow it down for “Have Mercy” and the song picks up as the chorus approaches. The members all seem to swell at the same time and Mann continues to shine vocally. Holmes takes the longest solo he has taken in a few tracks and Hausman and Pesce seem to be okay, as they lay a solid foundation for him to work. Mann has strong work on the bass, something that peeks out now and again. Pesce and Holmes start of “Sleeping And Walking” together with Hausman keeping a steady, but subtle pace. The band seems to hit their stride on these more mid-tempo, semi rock tracks. Each member feels comfortable in their roles and the tracks stand out for that reason. “Angels Never Call” has a smooth bass intro from Mann who plays right with Hausman. Holmes add a few chords that fit right in. Pesce also adds in to the overall vibe if the track with some synth sections. “No One Is Watching You” concludes the record with Mann and Pesce being the only two at the start, before the band comes in. As the song grows Mann really seems to wear her emotion on her sleeve and the band compliments her well for a strong album closer.

Where are they now? Pesce left the band shortly after this album was released. I haven't found much on him. Hausman is a manager of various musical acts/performers and is Mann's manager as well.
Holmes has worked in various capacities as a musician, forming new bands and solo works. He lives in New England. Mann has released several solo albums, appeared on TV and film and continues to write, perform and work on her art. She has been married since 1997.

FDF Personal Comments (aka the Live experience) – I never saw the band perform live.

FDF Overall Take – The albums hasn't aged the best honestly. Mann sounds wonderful and the band is tight, but at the same time it feels very dated. Don't get me wrong, there are some solid tracks on here, but most folks would probably find this to be one of those “I like the tracks I like a lot” and the rest are sort of “there”.

An older fan site can be found here.

Curious? Check out some MUSIC!

What About Love (Official Video)

What About Love (Live)

Coming Up Close has your copy.


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