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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Pretenders

Pretenders

1979

Wikipedia

Pretenders

Rating

3.37

Votes

3673

Reviews

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4

This is what 1001 albums is for. I had only heard the radio hits and kind of written the Pretenders off for some reason. Just never took the time to listen further. This is way edgier than what I was expecting. Like the punk energy with the catchy pop hooks. Chrissie Hynde has instantly shot up into my top female performers of all time list. Had no idea she was the lead songwriter and rhythm guitarist. Love her vocal style. Like some kind of hybrid of Joni Mitchell and Patti Smith. Super impressed. Have to say, though I love Nick Lowe, I'm glad he only produced the one single and not the rest of the album. His track is too thin and bright and kind of sticks out awkwardly in the mix of the album. I think I'll be going through the rest of their catalog now.

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4

Their later albums have more hits, but you can still appreciate edgy songwriting and Chrissie Hynde's great voice

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4

"Now I see you All impressed and half undressed You got paint stick all over the scars and lumps and bumps" (Tattooed love boys) "I said child, child staring into the street light And messed up child, lonely boy tonight Kick the wall, turn the street and back again Oh boy you've been forgotten" (The wait) "Your private life drama baby leave me out J'ai les glands with your theatrics Your acting's a drag It's o.k. on TV 'cause you can turn it off But don't try me Yes your marriage is a tragedy But it's not my concern I'm very superficial I hate anything official" (Private life) ¡Qué alegría escuchar a una señora para variar!

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5

Está pirata que nunca he escuchado bien a esta banda, a pesar de que su cantante me cae de huevos y que conozco su historia, papel e importancia en el punk inglés. Siempre asumí que era una banda más new wavey, como más plasticona. Pero no, eh, la neta este disco está chingón. De lo que me he perdido. Oh no, porque siendo honesto, no me hubiera gustado esto tanto más morro. En fin, es un gran disco de los 80, del punk, del new wave. ¿Noto una cierta influencia en PJ Harvey? No se me hace tan descabellado. También me dejó claro que si unes The Clash + Pretenders te salen los Libertines. Increíbles riffs a montones. Space Invader, wow.

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5

10/10 nada más porque tengo un soft spot por las bandas de rock lideradas por mujeres. Aunque la verdad, más allá de eso, sí disfruté mucho el álbum. Creo que el hilo conductor es la voz de Chrissie Hynde, que es muy poderosa y la sabe adaptar (?) a los distintos ritmos que encontramos en el disco, además de a las letras. Y pensar que iba a “Did not listen”.

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5

Interesting instrumentals, sometimes with odd time signatures. Unique voice and singing style. I love the drums especially, the drummer stays right in the pocket and matches the songs' vibes perfectly.

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5

This is great, love the singer, love the instrumentation, love the aggression. Definitely a new favorite.

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5

This is a really stunning debut album, long a favorite of mine. Some of these songs have been classics for years both for mainstream and alternative audiences, it's hard to imagine what the impact must have been when the songs were new. What an amazing contrast between the deeply cool badassery of songs like "Precious" and "Tattooed Love Boys" and the unexpected softness and vulnerability of "Kid" and "Lovers of Today." Wow. The arrangements are crisp and tight and the guitar work is top notch. It feels so fresh, even today. Hynde is mesmerizing as the lead, with flawless vocals and lyrics that run the gambit from dreamy to empowering to occasionally disturbing. You could write a whole dissertation on the sexual politics of these songs. Nothing but love for this album, front to back. Favorite songs: Kid, Brass in Pocket, Tattooed Love Boys, Mystery Achievement

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4

Me gustaron sobre todo las canciones enérgicas, las más tranquilas como que me aburrieron, aunque la instrumental "Space Invader" fue muy divertida. Me gusta este sonido rockero ya en otro tono y la voz me gustó. Sobre todo fue bueno conocer mejor a los Pretenders, a quienes ubicaba creo más de oídas. Mis canciones destacadas: "Precious", "Up the Neck" y "The Wait". 7.5/10

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2

09/07/2021 - 15/08/2021 Album di debutto di una band che non conoscevo prima e che appartiene a un movimento del quale so poco o nulla (principalmente per mancanza di interesse e di stimoli ad averne). Mi sento impossibilitato a capirne la vera bontà e a individuarne le possibili influenze in altri lavori proprio per questi motivi; dirò la mia dal basso del mio bagaglio culturale musicale generale sperando di poter pensare la stessa cosa quando saprò di più - se mai ne saprò - dei Pretenders e del rock "classico" anni '70/'80. Come record di debutto è inquadrato, l'identità della band mi è chiara e sembra essere questa: riff da minimo sindacale che non mi incuriosiscono, testi un po' cringe che trattano, nella maggior parte dei casi, di storie d'amore / di vita prevedibili, emancipazione femminile e disinibizione sessuale (forse le poche cose avanguardistiche in questo LP guardandolo con occhi del 2021). A livello musicale nulla è eseguito male e allo stesso tempo nulla è straordinario o minimamente sperimentale: l'esempio più chiaro di quanto affermato è la precisa ma piatta "Space Invader". Vocalità generosa e appassionata quando opportuno, vedi "Private Life". A livello di missaggio l'unica cosa strana che noto è il livello della voce in "Precious", ma per il resto - almeno per le mie orecchie ancora profane in questo campo - la performance vocale, che trasuda leadership e coglioni (o meglio, clitoridi) quadrati, della Hynde mi sembra valorizzata e il resto ben bilanciato e adatto alla natura poco intraprendente del disco. Riascoltando il disco - cosa che non penso farò - skipperei tutto meno che "Precious" - che mi aveva fatto così ben sperare, "Lovers of Today" - dalle melodie interessanti - e "Mistery Achievement" - un po' ska - evitando come la peste la tediosa ed infinita "Private Life" (6:30 per parlare di un amante che non ti interessa né soddisfa sono davvero troppi per non essere davvero interessata o soddisfatta a/da lui, Chrissie), continuando nel frattempo a chiedermi perché "Stop Your Sobbing", "Kid" o "Brass in Pocket", potrebbero essere volontariamente ascoltati da gente nata dopo il 1980, vista la puzza di vecchio che emanano dopo 41 anni dalla loro uscita. Riesco a capire perché questo album piaceva all'ascoltatore medio e disinteressato dei tempi, perché potrebbe essere sfruttato anche da chi li ha vissuti in maniera più musicalmente impegnata come macchina del tempo con destinazione primi amori e primi "vaffanculo al mondo", e anche perché io mi sia annoiato così tanto e sorpreso così poco nell'ascoltarlo: non è una questione di età anagrafica mia o di questo LP, dato che tra i miei album preferiti c'è - al momento - roba di quei tempi (appartenente tuttavia a filoni musicali che presentano prodotti generalmente meno prevedibili e semplici da ricondurre ai soliti cliché rispetto a questo album), è questione di gusti e di approccio alla musica. Io, personalmente, non trovo soddisfazione nell'ascoltare qualcosa di così puntualmente scontato, vecchio e lontano dal mio vissuto e lontano dall'anticipare quelli che sono i tempi che vivo (come invece fa un "Kid A" a caso, per intenderci). In conclusione, il disco non è pessimo a livello tecnico, ma non mi trasmette nulla né riesco a vederne l'influenza in altre cose che ho ascoltato, siano esse vicine o lontane ai/dai tempi in cui è stato rilasciato.

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5

Best debut album. Somewhere between punk, rock and pop. Tattooed love boys has an iconic guitar hero solo

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5

One of the best!

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5

I love guitar hero 2 Tattoo love bois, stop sobbing, and brass pocket are some faves. Never listened to the full album but have heard many of these songs, not a single bad track.

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5

Had quite a rock feel to the beginning but don’t get me wrong and brass in pocket had me singing at the top of my lungs

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5

Really good album. Lots of songs I enjoyed. Reminds me of Elvis Costello or Joe Jackson. I listened to it 3 times.

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5

Another new wave classic. The whole album flows together so well.

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5

This is incredible! I’ve never heard the Pretenders before and am pleasantly surprised.

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5

I dig! More than Brass in my Pocket

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5

I really dig this. Lots of musical influences, can really hear the punk in there. Her voice is fantastic too.

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5

Love the Pretenders!!

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5

I've loved this album since it was released.

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5

Loved the way the songs sound. So distinct but sounds so effortless.

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5

Love this sound! Precious is tight, great jagged guitar tones! This is everything I love about punk in the 80s. Personality. Great songs. A real great ear for how to orchestrate something as simple as 2 guitars, drums, bass, and vocals. Brass In Pocket is a great tune. I had so much fun listening to this album!

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5

I am pumped, I adore the Pretenders! This is a magnificent debut album. At the intersection of 70's punk and pop rock is where the Pretenders meet to floor everyone with their we-don't-give-a-fuck lyrics melded into peppy instrumentation. They don't juxtapose lyrics and music as intensely as The Smiths do, but they're in that same vein. A precursor for sure. There's that subtle hit of something melancholy or maudlin wrapped in a wistful package and I love it. Chrissie Hynde's voice is magnetic and alluring. She's got that quality that expresses so much toughness and badassery but also softness and vulnerability. She's incredible, I could listen to her on loop for days and never get bored. Big fan!

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5

Tremendous album. If you only know The Pretenders material from the late-80s and after...this is not that band, almost literally. This album always felt like one of those rare crossover albums back in the 80s that appealed to punks, new wavers, and rockers alike. The pure energy from the angular attack of the band combined with the sneer of Chrissy Hynde's vocals is almost sad to hear in a way, knowing the musical (guitar/bass) half of the band would be dead due to drugs within ~2 years, but almost adds to its urgency. I've had this discussion with friends before on the best debuts by an act in history - not only in terms of an album but a song and "Precious" made everyone's short list - what a kick-ass song filled with attack, swagger, and musicality. With so many good cuts, it's hard to pick one personal favourite but for me you can't beat "Tattooed Love Boys" with that galloping rhythm trading off 7/8 and 4/4 measures in the verses. Punk? raw hard rock? Again who knows, who cares, it's awesome and those breakdowns are just weird in a great way. And all in 3 minutes. Not many downturns on this album* - the instrumental "Space Invader" serves as kind of a breather after Tattooed Love Boys. I will say that the first half is definitely the stronger one as some of the slower songs do bring the energy down a bit (the Kinks cover of "Stop Your Sobbing" is a misstep; it's not *bad* but doesn't fit well) but in general they do provide a nice ebb and flow - "Brass In Pocket" may be a middle of the road tune but it's an undeniably excellent and deserving hit song. Overall I just love the raw yet interesting production on this. Guitars sound fantastic, the double-tracked vocals often differ just enough to create some interesting tones at times especially in the heavier songs. Production combined with great songs... this is a keeper and one of the great debut albums ever. 9/10 5 stars. *only referring to the original release: 12 songs ending with Mystery Achievement.

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5

Wer Brass In Pocket Freitag zum ersten Mal gehört hat muss dringend Lost In Translation anschauen. Wunderbar upbeat ohne einen wirklich schlechten song. Vielleicht keine 5 Sterne verdient, aber eins von meinen Lieblingsalben. Beste Tracks: Precious, Stop Your Sobbing, Mystery Achievement, Brass In Pocket

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5

Guay. La voz de esta mujer es ... Y como tiene la canción Kid, y "is the debut studio album" le voy a dar un 5.

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5

Brass in Pocket was a good hit with lyrics that weren't serious but Chrissie shows that she is good at dealing with tricky topics. Kid is a conversation a mother has with her child when the child finds out her mother is a prostitute. It's a solid album top to bottom. Quite the debut. The two songs that start w a P are fab. Private Life is great instrumentally. Precious is the song I most identify with Chrissie Hynde. Full of confidence, edge, spunk and don't fuck with me attitude.  I'm precious . . .  fuck off! 

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5

Love them!💕

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5

Bomb

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5

Great powerpop

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5

It's hard to believe this is a debut album. The songs are edgy, confidently combining different styles into an original sound, oozing attitude. For reasons I can't articulate Brass in Pocket has always been one of my all time faves. I can't get enough of Chrissie Hynde. It was good to have her in the world while I was growing up and figuring out who I wanted to be.

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4

Pretty damn good

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4

7/10 FT: Brass in pocket

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4

The Pretenders are boldly 80s and it shows!

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4

I get the feeling that albums are more important if you have context. Brass in Pocket has been a staple of radio since I was a kid so I never paid attention to it but it was apparently the most popular song on the album. The album was ok but It doesn't really set my soul on fire.

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4

This. Album. Fucks.

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4

ожидал большего от Space Invader

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4

They ain't pretending!

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4

Good mix of early 80s punk, new wave and pop.

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4

Solid new wave punk sound of course.. Brass in pocket another one of those tracks that Ive heard many of times during Guitar Hero or Rockband

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4

Such a unique group for the time period. I need to listen to them more.

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4

I liked it, Truman didn't listen.

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4

It was pretty good, It was not really my cup of tea but it did have some good jams I bopped to.

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4

Love, love, love this album! I can’t get enough of Chrissie Hynde’s voice!

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4

Absolutely banging

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4

Achei bem divertido, tudo bem sincopado

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4

A great/classic album

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4

Pretty awesome album. Punk rock done right, and great singer.

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4

Sounds like it looks. V 80’s. I enjoyed it thoroughly, even before bed. Brass in Pocket and Space Invader were my two favs.

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4

Like : Up the Neck Tattooed Love - didn’t love - a little too punk? There’s a jam song in the mix here early that was pretty fun - tight drums and bass (Space Invaders) Stop Sobbing : reminds me of like a 50s or 60s song that’s been revamped for the 80s Private Life : baseline vibes - reggae influence of the 80s reminds me of the polices song, walking on the moon - in contention for favorite song - ‘you’ve been lying to someone about me, stop’ back up vocals are cool Brass in Pocket : haha this is probably why my parents had this album - my Mom loved this song - reminds me of her cleaning the house on a Saturday - vacuuming and folding clothes and dancing - this is probably the best song commercially and might end up being my favorite just for posterity sake Lovers of Today - probably my least favorite one so far... Overall I enjoyed it - reminded me of my parents - talked to my dad about it later and he said the lead singer was ahead of her time. 7.8/10

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4

Pop rock.

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4

Super original album/sound. I'm also a sucker for chicks that wail.

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4

This is a really great rock record. I had no idea they were formed in England since Chrissie Hynde is from Ohio. Brass in Pocket is the hit of this record but not representative of the rest.

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4

I only knew the singles, but this whole record is amazing.

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4

Pretty good

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4

Bastante entretenido, aunque nada super destacable supongo. La voz de la vocalista es lo que resalta más en el disco y los ocasionales riffs como en Private Life están agradables. Canciones que más disfruté: The Wait y Private Life. Mood: Verano ochentero

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4

7. this was fun and i really liked the sound, but the back end got really slow with 3 5+ minute songs.

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4

enjoyed this more or less. ngl brass in pocket is a bop. makes me inappropriately attracted to chrissie hynde. new wave with some teeth.

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4

Okay, I actually like the Pretenders, but the hype around them irritated me at the time. Back in the rock era, any time some back to basics band came around, they were hailed by the rock press as the saviors of rock 'n roll, and the Pretenders were no different. The Pretenders are a rock 'n roll band at heart, at least in their attitude, but there was more to them from the start. On their debut album, the treated guitars of James Honeyman-Scott were swathed in reverb and flange, a nod to new wave. They had songs like "Brass In Pocket" or "Mystery Achievement," which made them chart accessible. But they also had a real edge in songs like "The Phone Call" and "The Wait," which had tricky rhythmic figures unusual in this kind of music. And on top of all that, you had the bad girl swagger of Chrissie Hynde cut with an emotional vulnerability that was probably closer to the truth. I've never listened to this album all the way through, but the sustained invention, energy, and performances are impressive. The Pretenders are actually a much more powerful band than their hits would lead you to believe. Another thing I just noticed is how beautifully produced and sequenced this album is. The album flows like a dream, especially the first side. The second side is much more poppy, not nearly as much my thing.

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4

Forgot how much I enjoyed listening to them :)

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4

Love this album - I only recently rediscovered The Pretenders this past year and was surprised at how tight the rhythms and riffs are in this album. Plus what a lead in Chrissie Hynde!

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4

Straight away decent. Old school punk, liking it immediately. Feels familiar, maybe Tony Hawks or Earthed. Classic punk style, in that there are similar sounds to Black Flag, but also feel like bands like this inspired QOTSA. Yeh just realised the track 'The Wait' is off Earthed. 4/5

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4

Not what I expected at all but I loved it. Can even see influences on bands like No Doubt, Kings of Leon but then they throw a curve ball like Your Sobbing or Brass in Pocket. A strange mix of pop and punk but one I thoroughly enjoyed.

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4

Great.

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4

An album that sounds to me to be ahead of it’s time. Defining the meaning of progressive.I had just started listening to music when this album came out and apart from the very obviously commercial single releases on the album, it was probably too progressive for me at the time. Proving at least that youth is indeed wasted on the young.

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4

Never really paid Pretenders any mind, other than what one would hear on the radio. In all honesty, I put this album on with the expectation of having some decent background music while I worked. But, I was pleasantly surprised. For a record as old as I am, it really holds up well. None of the dated studio tricks of the day, just good ol' rock. Starts off with Precious, which immediately reminded me of the Talking Heads with a post-punk/pop rock vibe and cheeky lyrics. The rest of the album follows suite, with Hynde's vocals up front and rightfully the star of the show. I do really like her vocals. way more than I expected to, to be frank. so, yeah. Pretenders. I kinda like them.

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4

The most famous Pretenders songs are their soft-rock hits, but there’s more of a punky energy going on here. Chrissie Hynde’s vocal performance on ‘Precious’ is just oozing charisma and confident sex-appeal. Good album

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4

Started out pretty punky, but side 2 has some of the best songs from the late 70s

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4

better than expected

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4

3.75

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4

very old school rock feel. unorthodox main vocals, but works surprisingly.

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4

this shit actually slaps top to bottom is2g

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4

Loved it.

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4

In eerste instantie niet mijn genre, maar wat klinkt dit album góéd! Erg goede mix, wellicht heeft dat te maken met het feit dat ik via Spotify luister naar de remastered versie uit 2018. Buiten de geweldige kwaliteit van het geluid springt Space Invaders er in de eerste helft van het album er voor mij uit. Invloeden van Alan Parsons Project zijn duidelijk te horen. Private life vind ik ook prachtig. Ik sta ervan te kijken dat dit album al 41 jaar oud is. Het album is een leuke mix van punk, rock, new wave en pop. Bekende track ‘brass in my pocket’ springt er niet uit.

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4

Didn't think I knew this band, but I do! Tatooed Love Boys and Brass in Pocket are two of those songs that are always cropping up in movies and stuff. This album was really fun! Definitely categorize is in the "Ahead of its time" column. This sounds PURE 80s, and mid-to-late-80s at that, but this came out in 1979. Really enjoyable.

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4

Transports me back to my ex wife's kitchen. We'd drink till 5 in the morning and dance to The Pretenders. A ferocious row would often erupt about the size of her tits. In hindsight I probably shouldn't have 'forced' her to have the boob job and it began the miserable descent to divorce, but they were very little tits and I like a nice pair of big bouncy ones. I shouldn't have married her, but she was rich and her mother had huge cannons. I thought she would develop, but sadly not. The boob job has a success and we had two great years together, until one fateful day on a long haul flight from Mexico to Fiji they just popped...I mean, they blew right up in her face. I knew it was over. They'd never be the same again. We separated two weeks later. She still has visible scars, but it's my mental scars that really haunt me at night. What a journey it was, from tiny flatties, to enormous jugs, to a disgusting, mutilated warzone.

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4

Fun to listen to

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4

Loved the pop hits they produced over the years so an entire album of punk-inspired rock with Hynde's lead vocals hit the spot from start to finish. Only previously knew "Brass in Pocket" so this was a pleasant first listen. Great introduction and interesting production techniques like the sound effects in "The Phone Call" and "Space Invader." The album really picked up in the 4th track "Tattooed Love Boys." The track "Stop Your Crying" is a good cover on its own, but I felt it disrupted the flow and maybe should have been excluded or placed near the end. I bet it only existed to help with their breakthrough. I love the diversity in the tracks; none of them felt weak. My favorite track is "Private Life."

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4

Classic.

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4

Fun, spunky album with a lot of energy!

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4

This was a good one. I definitely heard lots of bands that had been influenced from this...

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4

This is a pretty fun album. I knew Stop Your Sobbing, but none of the other ones. Chrissie Hynde is amazing. Such a character. She really brings it. The songs are all really fun to listen to. This is one of those bands where they have a sound all their own. It's just so distinct. I enjoyed it!

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4

Much better than I thought. More like elastica than expected

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4

Definitely a grower - think I need to spend some more time with this one

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4

Great. 4/5

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4

Way better than expected

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4

Classic. 4/5

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4

det hät var fan cooolt.

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4

De band blijft me altijd weer positief verrassen

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4

Enjoyed the album with the exception of the first track, it didn’t seem to fit in with the rest. As the album progressed I enjoyed it more, almost felt like they were getting better as we journeyed through the tracks.

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4

I'm a sucker for vintage punk rock girls and Debbie Harry and Chrissy Hynde are on the top of that list. The Pretenders somehow are able to thread the needle between raw and refined perfectly. Good enough for the airwaves, but grimy enough to want to go see them live. This is a great reminder that 80's radio wasn't all saxophones and blow suck. Really enjoyed listening to this album in its entirety.

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4

Really enjoyed this. For some reason I'd always assumed Pretenders were "pop" - I hadn't realised how punk they actually were. First album that's come up on this list that I'll listen to again and again I think.

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4

Yeah ok. I get it. The Pretenders are awesome. They rock, they're funny, they're hard, they get it. Chrissy Hynde is a gem.

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4

Good! Cool 80s punk rock

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4

This is why I’m here. Never would have listened to them, thought I knew

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4

Brash, punky and lively. Enjoyable rock with a strident vocal performance

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4

Känns som om de första par låtarna saknar något men resten går hårt!

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4

Cool new-wave, post-punk, pop-rock bonanza with an especially entertaining singer. A fun listen

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4

A very very solid album, it's the sort of edge that I expected from Blondie but never got

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4

4.1 - I shit on punk rock a lot (justifiably) but to its credit, that genre helped usher in chic, sophisticated New Wave records like this. Lots of terrific songwriting, from the perennial “Brass in Pocket” to deeper cuts like “Up the Neck” and “Tattoed Love Boys.” Chrissie Hynde sounds amazing, striking that balance of tough and vulnerable.

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4

Fantastic debut album. Great sound

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4

Maybe 4.5

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4

liked it, didnt have that friends theme vibes

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4

What a debut! Punk edge meets polished rock with prog timings thrown in, and Chrissie Hynde immediately becoming the 80s benchmark for women rock singers. Unexpectedly sweary start, four hits, a fun instrumental, and not a dull track on the whole thing. This was the true promise of the 80s.

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4

This was really cool, really polished for a debut album. Very good

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4

Solid

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4

Pretty good

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4

Sehr kultige Mischung aus Pop und New Wave/Punk! Kid und Tattooed Love Boys sind einfach Hits. "Brass in Pocket" ist unglaublich cool und die Gitarre auf dem Track ist super. Perfektioniert wurde der Track aber erst 2003 von Scarlett Johannson und Bill Murray. Der Rest des Albums ist schon auch unterhaltsam, bis auf "Private Life", was irgendwie nicht reinpasst auf dem Album. Auch ein schlichtes, aber starkes Albumcover. Insgesamt sehr enjoyable.

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4

Rock de los Pretenders. Un megahit. Un 4.

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4

I really enjoyed the first half. Punkier than I expected. You can tell it's an album that's designed to be played over two halves of vinyl. Brass in Pocket is still a bit cringe for me, but.

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4

I had forgotten just how good this album was. A very impressive debut album that really showed their range, they can really rock out, post punk and then switch to a nice top 40 ballad. Everyone talks about Brass in Pocket but maybe I've heard it too much because I think a lot of the other songs are better. They even managed to out Police the Police on Private Life and then they close out the album magnificently with an absolute killer song - Mystery Achievement. OMG that driving bass plus the guitar solo at the end! The common denominator in all the songs though, the glue that holds it all together, is Chrissie Hynde's incredible voice. I see that she wrote most of the songs too, so extra kudos to her.

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4

I like the contrast between the two sides. Side 1 is straight forward punk-inspired (my faves are The Wait and Tattoo Boys) that sound a lot lot like what many other bands at the time were playing, except better, and then they get more creative on side 2, with reggae and pop. It reminds me of Blondie's Parallel Lines. Chrissie is a real force, smart and angry and talented, a great band leader. I saw them in 1980 at Heatwave and regret that I didn't know most of their material then.

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4

Ah yes, I remember it well...

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4

Had previously only heard Brass in my Pocket, but enjoyed listening to the whole album. Listened all day. Great vocals and guitar. Need to listen to more of their other albums.

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4

Un bon album punk-rock, défénitivement à revisiter.

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4

Such a nostalgic album for me. My dad played them a ton as I was growing up. Still rips to this day.

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4

This is so fun!

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4

Love it.

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4

Good early new wave. Favorites: "Precious", "Brass in Pocket", "Mystery Achievement"

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4

cce

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4

Pretenders by The Pretenders (1979) There’s so much more to The Pretenders than that stellar opening groove to “My City Was Gone” (from Learning to Crawl [1984], used with approval by conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh in his heyday). Singer/songwriter/frontwoman (and Ohio native) Chrissie Hynde has a lot of violence, pain, sadness, contempt, and anger to spread around on this debut album, and lead guitarist James Honeyman-Scott, bassist Pete Farndon, and drummer Martin Chambers help her do it with style, skill, and sense. References are obscure but rockingly indelicate. The energy is raw, and the listener gets the message loud and clear. Chrissie Hynde is, in my view, one of the top ten female rockers of all time. Unafraid of idiosyncratic time signatures (“The Phone Call”, “Tattooed Love Boys”), radical variety (“Space Invaders”), and anti-dance rhythms (“The Wait”), The Pretenders play up power chords and driving grooves in a masterful rock mien, with enough restraint to keep each track from overwhelming the ears. The only two main weaknesses here are, first, the steady descent (a regression, really) into ‘commercial’ pop on tracks 7-11 (especially the cover of Ray Davies’ [of The Kinks] “Stop Your Sobbing” and “Kid”). It seems out of character, and sometimes out of sync with the mood of the lyrics. But by the end of the closing track “Mystery Achievement” we’re comfortably back into driving rock (although the song should have been extended about a minute, with a fade at the end). As for the second weakness, the rapid spoken word melding with sung melodies (“Private Life” and elsewhere) sounds awkward if not anti-poetic, as if Hynde has too many words to fit into an otherwise well crafted song. Released on December 27, 1979, this album put an fitting exclamation point on the fine music of the 70s. Truly an enjoyable listen. 4/5

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4

Such a fun listen and does not sound horribly dated!

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4

Really enjoyed this

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4

It's very strange going from growing up thinking that the 1970s was a wasteland for music to it being perhaps my favorite decade for music bar none. There was just so much happening, and everything was changing so quickly. Case in point, this album is a nice pop and punk in the post-punk era that doesn't really get talked about much. I think the success that Blondie experienced just prior to this album's release. This album is a lot of fun, well worth a listen 4/5

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4

Great album with "Brass in Pocket" the best most known song. 7/10.

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4

4.15, un band dont jai entendu parler mais )amais ecoute. Cest bon dans le style new wave c’est excellent.

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4

Some cracking tunes!

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4

4.5

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3

Hynde's voice floats beautifully above the guitar music. It ends up being a fun record. There's nothing mind-blowing on first listen, but there are also no weak tracks. The aesthetic of the album is total, from production to attitude.

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3

Very new wave. Chrissie Hynde has a very unique voice. Nothing super crazy for me here. Favorite tracks: "Mystery Achievement", "Brass in Pocket"

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3

oka

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3

Better than I thought it’d be honestly

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3

It was fine

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3

Ich hätte nicht gedacht, dass ich nach dem Hören Lust hätte, diese Platte noch einmal zu hören. Habe ich tatsächlich aber. Wird in der 2. Hälfte stellenweise gut bis sehr gut.

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3

A decent Brit pop-rock LP. Female vocals are a much-welcomed change of pace from the usual fare in this genre.

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3

Enjoyed it. Couple of classics in there. Prefer their ballad stuff to their punk stuff

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3

Her voice is just tremendous. The music around it doesn't live up to her.

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3

Did not know "Brass in Pocket" was Pretenders. Interesting, overall not bad but nothing that struck me as very interesting. I kind of like her vocal delivery though.

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3

I liked this more than I thought I would, liked the bright chippy guitar sounds and the vocals. Wasn't expecting to recognize any songs, but knew "Brass in Pocket," though I don't really like that song.

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3

Good. Old classic drum sound that I don't enjoy but the music is fun

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3

definitely an example of the time - and one of those albums i feel like i should've liked more than i did. it was...you know, fine. but apart from Lovers of Today, nothing really jumped out at me

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3

Fun

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3

Okay… I can’t be the only one here who didn’t know that song was called, “Brass in my Pocket,” right? RIGHT??? Anyway, if you talk about shitting bricks in the first minute of your first song that’s a pretty good way to make me a happy listener. An uneven record overall, but I love the uptempo snarly stuff.

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3

Me gusta como empieza con "Precious". En general suena bien, "Tattooed Love Boys", "Lovers of Today" y sobre todo "Brass in Pocket" que es una canción de 10.

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3

Carried by Brass In Pocket

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3

Three stars for the three good songs on the album

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3

Brass in Pocket good. Others meh. Vocalist is better than other Britpop. 6

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3

A game of two halves, Clive. Really enjoyed the spiky, sexy first half - but felt it ran out of steam in the latter portion of the album. Never liked 'Brass In Pocket', but it's fairly atypical of this collection. I really enjoyed the instrumental, more bands should do this.

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3

Decent straight ahead rock album.

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3

6/10. Pretty good, nothing too special doesn't seem.

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3

good songs with nice guitar and accompaniment but a weird voice and odd vocals. not too bad on the whole but not as good as some that are similar

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3

Only listened to half because will rushed me, it’s not as good as like Lilly Allen but yeah whatever 3

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3

Decent. Good rock band. I probably would have enjoyed them live.

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3

Sorta catchy, not off putting. I just wish it were more in some direction, more goth, more punk, more pop. It feels like it sits too squarely between genres, never really finding a sound for themselves, stays bland when I feel their could really be moments.

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3

groovy

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3

OK, good for what it is. Catchy singles and interesting tunes.

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3

Inicialmente pareceu catita, mas continuou e mostrou-se chato e só mais um álbum de rock da época. Nota 5/10

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3

Didn't listen to it all but started well. Good punk tunes

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3

I love the song Brass In Pocket. I love the energy of Chrissie Hynde - Karen O owes a debt to her, for sure. And that arrangement on Precious is pretty fun. But this is another one that seemed to go on too long for what it is. Still, Brass In Pocket.

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3

Questo è un gruppo che mi sta simpatico, è un anni 80 che però non è eccessivamente stucchevole e alcuni pezzi tipo Precious mi coinvolgono però altri brani sono meno convincenti.

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3

Tatooed Love Boys: divertente. Private Life: Carina la scelta di farla reggae e pure l'assolo di chitarra m'è piaciuto però la durata è ingiustificatamente eccessiva. Lovers of Today: Strana ma l'ho trovata interessante. Mystery Achievement: Anche questa a tratti m'è piaciuta. In conclusione: Anche con questo disco mi trovo un po' in difficoltà. L'ascolto è stato interessante, mi è sembrato un gruppo abbastanza eclettico e ho apprezzato spesso gli assoli di chitarra che è inusuale per me. La voce è un po' sopra le righe ma non mi è dispiaciuta, i testi sessualmente ammiccanti erano un po' la moda del periodo. La patina '80 c'è ma non è così terribilmente fastidiosa, tranne nella hit Brass in Pocket che è tipo l'equivalente del pezzo trap di oggi col feat. di Loredana Bertè per fare i soldi. Non so, probabilmente non lo riascolterei ma più che altro per questione di gusti personali. Ho visto su Wikipedia che hanno fatto uscire un disco l'anno scorso e sono ancora in attività, questo era il primo disco, sarebbe interessante vedere che roba fanno oggi.

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3

Didn't hate this, even though the first couple tracks were a bit weird. Brass in Pocket came on and I was like "oh!! it's this song!!" it's a tune.

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3

Only the hits stand out as special, but overall good album

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3

Enjoyed it, some recognizable songs.

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3

Quite nice.

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3

Pretty good. The kinks cover surprised me in a good way, and another song was likely inspired by Love-Orange skies. At least the intro sounded very similar.

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3

Good.

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3

Este disco lo escuchaba mi padre xd

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3

I mean, it was alright. I've been struggling through a ridiculously long install process while listening to this, so maybe the activity corrupted the music, but I didn't enjoy this as much as I thought I would. Might give another listen at some point when I'm in a better place.

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3

Om helemaal uit mijn dak te gaan moet het tempo van deze rockmuziek toch een flink stuk sneller. Als achtergrondmuziek vind ik het niet relaxt genoeg. Ik kan er eigenlijk net niks mee. Sommige gitaarrifjes klinken wel heel lekker "middle of the road" maar andere riedeltjes klinken gewoonweg vals. Hadden ze toen maar computers gehad voor de effectjes. Ik werd alert bij "The Wait" dat me een beetje aan Blondie deed denken. Helaas ook daar weer een snerende gitaarsolo die het toch een beetje verpest. Zou deze band dan vooral groot geworden zijn door hun live optredens? Het nummer "Kid" vond ik wel heel lekker poppie. Het gitaarspel is daar ook een stuk beter. De zang bibbert wel een beetje op het eind van het nummer, wat wat onervaren overkomt. En potjandorie, nou doet ze dat met het volgende nummer ook weer. Ontdek ik nu een tweede imperfectie aan deze band? Ten slotte is "Mysterie Achievement" ook wel een nummer met potentie. Doet me beetje denken aan de film E.T..

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3

better than normal indie grunge

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3

New Wave, Punk pop. Jagged guitars which often have almost sing/speak vocals over them. Best Tracks: Precious, Kid, Brass In Pocket

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3

I like a few songs. I've personally not listened to a lot of "New Wave" - I know it's often referred to as an iteration of punk. I can hear that a bit in some songs and some of the attitude, but it's so much more commercial sounding generally. One song had a notable amount of Flanger.

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3

A nice enough listen but bar one standout track it all seems a bit generic.

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3

Chrissy 's great voice!

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3

Pretending I remember a song from this album, fun listen but nothing memorable to this reviewer

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3

Pretending to be good at music, right? Am I right? Like they're not actually good at music, they're only pretending...because they're The Pretenders...they pretend to do stuff. In this instance, they're pretending to make music, but fail to... It's all Pretend. They're The Prenenders. I'm not sure if you're getting it.

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3

I think this album probably stands out as a reflection on the era. I assume it was innovative for the time, and while the percussive forward march on some of these tracks inspired head bobbing, I can't help but feel like this has been bested by many since.

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3

Hab’s am Freitag schon gehört, daher nur Gesamteindruck aus dem Gedächtnis hier: großartige Stimme und Attitude, der man nicht anmerken würde dass das hier ein Debutalbum ist. Nun gut, Chrissie Hynde hatte bis dahin auch zwischen Akron, London und Paris schon ne Menge Rock’n’Roll hinter sich gebracht und außerdem für die Platte nur die derbsten Checker aufgekehrt. So klingt das dann auch: nach Erfahrung, Sehnsucht, Lust, Dreck und Eleganz. Klassisch, möchte ich sagen und vergebe 3,3

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3

Cover bildet Inhalt recht gut ab. Als würden Alt-Punks kurz vor Abschluss eines Bausparvertrages stehen. Durchaus starke, zwischen Rock’n’Roll und Pop platzierte Songs. Die Vocals virtuos und mit saftigen aber coolem Pathos. Ohne sie wären Yeah Yeah Yeahs undenkbar. „Kid“ hätte ich gern einem Mädel aufs Tape untergejubelt. Sexy 3.4

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3

A welcome blast from the past. 3*

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3

Cool Vocals and riffs man. It's a solid voice the lead singers voice mixing felt a bit odd at first, but it grew on me.

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3

Some classic tunes; some hissy production. Three bangers

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3

Significantly aged, but despite better songs coming in later albums this is still something special. Chrissie Hynde forever

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3

I didn't really like Side 1 very much. I think it was too \"punk\" for me? But I liked several of the latter songs that were more melodic. My favorite song on this album is Kid (and part of the riff sounds a bit like Telstar). Other songs I liked were Mystery Achievement, Stop Your Sobbing, Brass in Pocket, and Space Invaders.

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3

Not a big fan of her voice but also overall lacking any big and great songs

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3

Great rock, musically, but the vocals just take away from the potential. She has a good voice, but it wasn’t used well in the songwriting to make any one song catchy or memorable.

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3

This one was very OK, very middle of the road for me. Absolutely listenable, but nothing great, nothing really worth revisiting.

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3

was aighttttt. I was expecting more, there's like 1 really good song, rest is OK

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3

6/10

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3

I was familiar with the hits, but leadoff track Precious is the best on the album. I wish there was more like here. Overall it's a pretty enjoyable album, but I felt it started losing a little steam toward the end. 6.5/10 or maybe 7/10

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3

Generic rock, nothing that really strikes my fancy.

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3

Heb het niet helemaal kunnen luisteren maar dat ga ik nog wel doen want het klonk interessant. Ik begin daarom met drie sterren.

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3

Nooit verder gekomen dan de bekende nummers, maar dit was echt een goed album!

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3

Leuk, divers plaatje. Zo heb ik de Pretenders ook eens wat beter leren kennen.

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3

Pretty good 80s pop. Heard a bit of the punk influence. Liked the female lead singer.

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3

I hadn't really heard much of their stuff beyond the well known singles. Not bad.

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3

This album surprised me. It’s an interesting mix of styles: a little pop and a little punky. I like the album enough to listen again, but not enough to bring it into my musicsphere and call it my own.

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3

"The Pretenders" starts with terrific punk energy on "Precious," but the next two tracks don't quite keep up the same raw gusto and the album ends up being promising yet uneven. Things seemed like they were picking back up with "The Wait," but then "Stop Your Sobbing" was far too poppy and jangly. It was their first single, and their first producer dropped them after releasing it, as he thought the band was "not going anywhere." And I've gotta admit, if that was the first impression I'm not sure I'd have stuck around. "Sobbing" is fine, but it doesn't grab the listener and offers to hints of the edge found in the band's better work. (edit: It's because it's a cover of a Kinks song! Doubly interesting because we drew the Kinks for the previous album. And covering this song led Chrissie Hynde to meet, date, and have a kid with Ray Davies!) "Private Life" shows yet another side of the Pretenders, restrained and rambling and quirky They return to pop with "Brass in Pocket," and I want to be frustrated again, but it's just such a terrific song that it's hard to be mad. I had no idea what this song was called, so I totally wasn't anticipating it popping up on this album. There was a strong finish with "Mystery Achievement," but listening to some of the Pretenders' other most popular songs, I couldn't help but be struck by what could have been. Their debut showed a lot of different influences and different possible directions for the band. If only they had embraced the side that wrote "Precious" a little more.

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3

Very middling. Ok at best.

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3

Fairly good album. Might revisit precious and brass in pocket.

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3

Solid Album, but nothing special

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3

3.5

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3

Chrissie is one of the hardest rockers there is! Plus ... who else could sing about Cuyahoga Falls (not on this album, but still)?

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3

Was unfamiliar, but this is good stuff. Kind of 'clean' punk? Anyway, I enjoyed it. 3.5ish.

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3

rockig schwungvoll Frauenstimme

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3

Not memorable, but enjoyed some of the tracks

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3

I liked it, but it's too much generic.

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3

Solid

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3

Special. So special.

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3

In general I like the Pretenders. "Brass in Pocket" is a good example of the best of what this band has to offer. "Stop Your Sobbing" was the only other track from this album that I know I've heard before. "Space Invader" was a new potential favorite. Overall, the album was okay. I would skip "Tattooed Love Boys". I don't feel enough of a draw to the album as a whole to come back for a second listen.

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3

Pretenders are pretty good. Fine debut album. Other than "Brass in Pocket," I probably won't listen to these songs again.

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3

I feel I've heard of the Pretenders from an older uncle or aunty who were really into them. I can see where the hype would have been back in the day a pop/punk outfit that would appeal to a lot of people. Best: Brass in Pocket Worst: Private Life

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3

Has some classic tracks could be great but at best average xx

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3

Some nice tracks and a unique sound.

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3

Rating: 6/10 Best songs: Mystery achievement

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3

it was alright, the voice kinda really made me mad for some reason but it was fine.

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3

Vintage sounds form The Who. Dreadful recording quality, back when the studios hadn't yet worked out how to record rock bands. The group show potential though; they should do well. Actually want to give 3.5 stars.

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3

Ich hatte die irgendwie NULL aufm Schirm, keine Ahnung wieso. Also schlecht find ich das auf jeden Fall nicht, aber diese glossy Version von Punk Rock aus der ~Neuen Welle~ kommt einfach nicht so an bei mir. Der Gesang ist zwar interessant, gerade wenn sie mehr spricht, aber wirkt auch oft zu steril - hätte bisschen rotziger sein können. Die Punk Riffs sind stabil aber auch gleichzeitig berechenbar und unspektakulär. So ein Song wie Tattoed Love Boys stechen da wieder rum - einfach bisschen verspielter und runder. Sonst ist es oft leider einfach eher bisschen flotterer Pop Rock. Was nicht schlecht ist, aber auch nix was mich vom Hocker reißt.

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3

Vieles richtig geile new-wave punk Mischung, zum Ende hin wird es dann leider immer mehr zu dem was man im Radio erwartet, wenn „die besten 80er“ gespielt werden

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3

Ich werde ehrlich sein ich habe stand jetzt ca alles vom album vergessen ausser dass der letzte track gebangt hat und dass der erste track auch relativ gebangt hat

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3

Musste mich etwas an die Spoken word vocals gewöhnen aber sonst sehr sehr cool, kannte ich vorher auch nicht. Echt solides Album, komm ich bestimmt nochmal zurück zu. Gute 3-3.5

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3

das hat sooo stark angefangen, die erste hälfte mega geil aber dann leider ganz ganz schnell ganz ganz belanglos geworden 😐😐😐 mochte die spoken word artigen vocals auf den ersten tracks sehr, hat zu dem generell recht punkigen vibe beigetragen, aber ann echt ganz langweiliger poprock auf einmal, 3/5 mit gutem willen

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3

Unterhaltsam, coole Instrumentals aber find den Gesang irgendwie generisch und hat mich insgesamt jetzt nicht wahnsinnig beeindruckt

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3

Konnte da jetzt nur beiläufig reinhören, ganz chillig und spaßig aber dann auch nicht viel mehr. Nettes album 6/10

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3

Good, but not great, aside from brass in pocket of course.

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3

Buen rock con melodías sencillas interpretado por una gran voz femenina

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3

meh

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3

This is the debut album from the Pretenders and it made the band famous. It debuted at number 1 on the UK Albums chart and made it into the top 10 on the US Billboard 200 top albums. Just 3 years later the album was certified platinum in the US. This is a great album filled with rock, punk, and pop music that deserves the recognition it has received.

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3

A modern-day classic

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3

It was fine

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3

Pretty easy listening- thought the rhythms were fun

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3

They were probably imspired by video game music; or they became video game BGM...lol

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3

Mediocre until Brass in Pocket which is genius. Then Kid which is almost as good. Other than that, disappointing.

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3

Fine but not as good as I was hoping it would be.

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3

I always want to like The Pretenders but I just don't jive with Chrissie Hynde's voice. Oh well

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3

Very enjoyable

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3

I've gotta listen to my soul here, and what it's telling me is not enough. This just doesn't give me that electric jolt in the guts often enough to rate it as highly as my brain says I should. But I'm too sensible of The Pretenders gifts, which are many, to get caught up listing their faults. Hynde's tough gal attitude is a thrill in itself, as is the derisive way the guitar lines get cast out. And the lyrics are oblique enough that I'm not entirely convinced she wants me to fuck off, even when she tells me to fuck off.

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3

Good energy to this, but ultimately not that interesting. Brass in Pocket the clear standout, but I did like the sass throughout. 3/5, just.

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3

I like Christy Hynes voice. kinda punk. Not bad album but not great. Stop your sobbing, brass in pocket is a famous song.

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2

ENOUGH FUCKING NEW WAVE JESUS CHRIST 2/5.

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2

Eh.

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2

2.6

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2

-Female Lou Reed -Mediocre.... Brass in Pocket obviously is a really well-known one, but I was thoroughly unimpressed.

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2

Couple classic hits, very 80s girl punk mixed with slower jams. Not my speed though, just a miss for me first listen

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2

honestly not into it

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2

Kinda interesting lyrics, but mostly about being 'so special and unique'. A tad boring.

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2

Pop-rock / New Wave 🥱

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2

Ganske kjedelig punk-rock greie. Super simple riff, lite (men noe) variasjon i sounden, 4/4 trommer, og alt i alt ganske lett å glemme. Sangeren var ganske distinkt, noen av sangene var bedre enn 1/10, bassen på Space Invader var ganske fet ngl, Brass in Pocket var faktisk alright, og det er sikkert noe mer her for noen. Ikke min ting.

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2

I like that single where she's a waitress in the video. Gwen Stefani obviously took a big influence from this. Kind of blah though.

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2

meh

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2

Bb

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2

I don't like the voice. Voices are so important to me and can quite easily become annoying when they use weird inflections and contrived strangeness. At some stages on this album I can't even recognise the language being used. The music is kind of okay.

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2

Like a popular made for radio version of New York Dolls or FEAR

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2

Got bored. Didn't listen to the whole thing, but it wasn't bad. Just didn't catch my attention.

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2

Something is off about this record and it’s hard to put my finger on exactly what. The songwriting is fine, if occasionally dodgy: just about every song seems super long, and sometimes it seems like they’re a collection of just-okay guitar riffs. Several songs are instrumental but aren’t interesting enough to justify. Not a fan of the mix: the vocals are way too high and sound disconnected, the drums are muddy and ill-defined. The middle run of this record is good - “The Wait,” “Kid,” and “Brass in Pocket” at least attempt hooks - but the beginning and end don’t do much for me.

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2

Not my cup of tea. Brass in Pocket is a classic, but the rest of the album isn't really for me.

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2

on par with Dry

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2

Not bad, not great. Was interesting, but would not listen again.

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2

the only pretenders are people that think this is good

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2

stopped at song 6/26 because i got really bored. milquetoast. everything sounds the same. i would listen and maybe nod along if someone had it on in the car, but i feel like it's a waste of time to play it for myself when there's so much good stuff out there

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2

Enjoyed it, but not really my style. Quite neat for punk.

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2

very underwhelming. i was hoping for a whole album of chain gang and brass in pocket. it is not that.

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2

It was ok. But her voice always annoys me

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2

Meh

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2

Ik vind hier niks bijzonders aan. niet waar ik met plezier naar luister

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2

It’s ok. Not as bad as I thought

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2

A bit boring. I liked a couple of songs.

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2

Decent Album. Dont know If listen to it again tho. Would give an 2.5 / 5/10 or sth. Like that.

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2

Didn't like this one much. It just didn't have enough interesting or different about it to capture my imagination. It just felt like some more generic rock with some fairly cringey lyrics.

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2

Meh.

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2

Gesang dynamisch, auf jeden Fall punk Energie, aber am Ende des Tages klingt alles gleich, auch text unverständlich. So la la

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2

A faden punkiger Schinken

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2

Overall didn't care for it, but Brass In Pocket is a great song

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2

It’s an ok album. Their main song is pretty well known but other than that the band felt like a sub par Fleetwood Mac. Don’t know how much I’d revisit it. 5.0/10

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2

Nothing really stood out except for 'Brass in Pocket'

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2

Fine, I guess.

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2

it was ok but not my vibes. too much hablar

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2

Middling.

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2

Je préfère le côté punk rock de la face A, mais le mix mets la voix beaucoup trop en avant. La reprise de Stop Your Sobbing des Kinks est bien réussie. Un essentiel pour le rock féminin, mais pas si accrocheur pour avoir envie d'y revenir régulièrement.

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2

talk-singing. universal mullet music.

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2

One great track, couple of other interesting ones, sounds like one foot in the 80s and one in a different time. Not bad, won't be listening again though

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2

I know a lot of people love this album but for me it's jarring, unsettling and disconnecting. Just not my thing.

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2

Hi- Brass in Pocket Sorta girl punk-pop; I'm okay with most of it, but Brass is still probably the best song on the album.

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2

This felt like a chore. Best track: ?

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2

I didn't hate listening to the album but its not my favorite style of music or singing. Couldn't get into it.

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2

First song was a bit punk and fun, downhill after

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2

Eh it's fine

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1

Not a fan of the pretenders

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1

Why

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1

I made it about 3 tracks in. I felt like I was being punished for a crime I did not commit.

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1

Average at best - bit wishy washy

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1

ruim

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1

Spero di non essere stato l'unico. Ma a parte la prima traccia, che mi era quasi piaciuta, ma poi anche no, il resto m'ha proprio fatto schifo.

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1

Sometimes there's a reason you've only ever heard one song from an ablum.

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1

Did not like

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1980s UK Rock

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Sounds like 60s rock - I think the second song might've been up my alley.

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