The debut Foreigner CD captures the band as they began their ascent into rock stardom and a well deserved success. “Foreigner” is exciting for several reasons but mostly because the CD is so well done and played so beautifully by Lou Gramm, Mick Jones, Ian McDonald, Al Greenwood and company. It’s excitment also springs from this CD showing the band at that unique moment when the musical product comes together in perfection. This debut release by Foreigner caught everyone’s attention in 1977 because it was very good rock music and this was proven when the band first toured with the release. I had the pleasure of seeing Foreigner on their first tour and they played the entire debut album so perfectly that their musicianship had me in awe.One note: please pay attention to the talent of the often overlooked genius of Ian McDonald who added much texture to this release. The guy was very impressive in concert on their first tour. He played several instruments flawlessly and to this day (25 years ago!) I can recall from my seat in the balcony of a small venue near the side of the stage seeing Ian pick up one instrument after another and play them so well. Ian is quite talented and this release shows it.Without a doubt the debut release from Foreigner captures a great moment in rock as a wonderful band appears on the scene with a great sound. Enjoy!
Metal Album Reviews[RSS]
This album displays the first collaboration of one of modern musics finest songwriting teams: Guitarist Mick Jones and vocalist Lou Gramm.As years went their songs would become world wide rock anthems. But it is on their early, and their first album in particular, that they can be found in their rawest and most rocking shape.This is a killer album, essential in every record collection, regardless of wheater you’re a metal head or an AOR freak!Unlike what people may think, Foreigner are a hardrock band – not the kings of soft rock ballads. Check out their first four albums. There’s only one real ballad on them. The rest of the songs are pure ROCK!
The debut of Foreigner was the coming together of several diverse musical talents. The pedigree included members of Spooky Tooth, King Crimson and several other lesser known bands. Released with little or no fanfare, it suddenly became one of Atlantic Records’ best selling albums of all time and launched this conglomerate of Brits and Americans.
With good reason. Just about every song on this album was a ready made polished hit. Songs like “Feels Like The First Time” and “Cold as Ice” jumped from the stereo with commanding force, and newfound vocal presence Lou Gramm had a perfect arena rock voice. To make the album safe for those few progressive album radio stations left in the late seventies, the adventurous “Star Rider” would lure them in with its flawless musicianship. (It also became a concert staple for the length of Foreigner’s career.) Need a little aggro-angst as a seventies teen? Then “At War With The World” and “Head Knocker” probably fed your white collar aggression better than the Sex Pistols did back then.
“Foreigner” was so laden with classic material that at least one of four tracks is probably blaring forth from some classic rock station as you read this. “Feels Like The First Time,” “Headknocker,” “Cold As Ice” and “Long Way From Home” still make you want to party like it’s 1979.
The re-issue is a step up from the original CDs. Better sound and multi-instrumentalist Ian McDonald gets better exposure. The demos are laughable….sometimes a bonus cut is NOT really a bonus. Especially the sirens and marching boots on “At War With The World.”
I didn’t expect much from the two music videos and I wasn’t disappointed. The videos are almost 25 years old and look it. The film stock had obviously deteriorated over the years and the video production techniques pre-date MTV. So there wasn’t much imagination having the band setup their equipment in front of a railroad car and lip-synching to “Feels Like The First Time” and “Cold As Ice.” As for the demos, they pale in comparison to the originals. But there are some nice touches. For example, the sound of marching soldiers at the end of “At War With The World.” A nice sound effect that makes you wish they had utilized it for the original. The previously-unreleased “Take Me To Your Leader” is a pleasant surprise. Probably the best of the demos. A nice, raucous, raunchy tune that reminded me of “Lovemaker,” from their live CD. But the best was yet to come. After I heard the entire album, I was just awed and floored by the sound quality of the new mixes. It was like listening to the album for the first time. I assume either the songs were new mixes or the improved sound quality allowed the listener to hear things they were unable to hear before. Subsequent listenings made me very nostalgic for those early years of Foreigner and what GREAT music Mick Jones and Ian McDonald made together. I wish the two would just bury the hatchet, get over their clashing egos/lingering bitterness, and reunite for the music. With Lou Gramm as intermediary and referee, of course. Can’t wait for the DVD-Audio of the “Double Vision” album. Hopefully, that will be the next planned Foreigner release by Rhino Records.
This is the classic Foreigner release that so many of us 30-somethings remember. If you are planning to buy this DVD Audio disk, then chances are good that you listened to the original vinyl release when you were younger. Well, you’re in for a treat. This release reveals vocal and instrumental details that you’ve never heard. Lou Gramm has an excellent voice…I never knew this before listening to the 96-24 version. If you were a fan of the original album, then buy this (After upgrading your system to fully appreciate the DVD Audio experience).This disk has an abundance of extras: You can listen to the disk as Mick Jones and Lou Gramm talk along. They convey their experiences with each song as it plays on your stereo.The best bonus, however, is the four demo versions included:”Feels Like The First Time,” “Woman oh Woman,” At War With The World,” and “Take Me To Your Leader,” are included here. If you buy this DVD-A disk (and you should), do yourself a favor…listen to the demo version of “Feels Like The First Time” before you listen to the regular version of the song. The demo is absolutely horrible! It’s fun and interesting to compare the two. My hat is off to Foreigner and the producers for having the guts to release their demos. Many bands will not do this.I did not give this release 5 stars because I reserve such a rating for sensational, life-altering products. This is a very good addition to any DVD-A collection. Highly recommended.