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Agent Provocateur

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★★★★☆
(26 Reviews)

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  • Agent Provocateur(1984). Foreigner’s fifth studio album.After the band’s pinnacle release of the “4″ album in 1981, Foreigner decided to implement more keyboards into their traditional classic rock sound, and came off with Agent Provocateur three years later. While not the huge success that “4″ was, it did spawn the band a couple of chart topping classics in the form of “That Was Yesterday” and the famous ballad “I Want To Know What Love Is”. The rest of the album measures up very nicely as well. Most fans tend to only look at the softer Foreigner material from the 80’s, but the period did also sport numerous rockers. Foreigner is generally a band which critics love to hate, but why is this album still loved by many fans? Let’s see:1) Tooth And Nail- Excellent mid-paced rocker which kicks off the album. Comparable to some of the band’s earlier material. 9/102) That Was Yesterday- The album’s sleeper hit, a very melodic mid-paced semi-ballad, which contains a strong synth melody. Excellent. 10/103) I Want To Know What Love Is- Foreigner’s very first #1 single. A slow ballad which builds up the background vocals as the chorus draws in. Nicely done. 10/104) Growing Up The Hard Way- One of my two favorite rockers off the album. Mostly a synth/rock number, but it’s still very underrated in Foreigner’s catalogue. 10/105) Reaction To Action- My other favorite rocker here. The keyboards take backseat to an all out classic electric guitar anthem. Also very underrated. 10/106) Stranger In My Own House- Here’s where the album takes a slight downhill turn. This song is slower, but still rocking, similar to what the band Loverboy would do. 8/107) Love In Vain- Another mid-paced keyboard driven tune, almost like the track “Growing Up The Hard Way”. Very catchy. 9/108) Down On Love- This track is more of an optimistic ballad, which stands out a little from some of Foreigner’s sad ballads. Not bad. 8/109) Two Different Worlds- Yet another ballad, but more mellow like “I Want To Know What Love Is”. Good, but not outstanding. 8/1010) She’s Too Tough- The album closes with a faster pop rock track which also sounds like a Loverboy song. Upbeat and catchy. 9/10Overall, Agent Provocateur is a noteworthy Foreigner album, which gets 4.5 stars. It may not be as hard rocking as some of their earlier 70’s albums, but it is still a strong collection of rockers and ballads which offer a bit of variety throughout the disc. If you’re just a casual fan getting into Foreigner, I recommend listening to “4″ first, and then proceeding onto this album and the others. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. Also, check out their 1987 album, Inside Information.

    Posted on December 3, 2009