Sunday, 3 June 2018

Mink De Ville - Coup De Grace (1981)

In her laughter, there's mission bells....

  

Released October 1981

Running time 33.59

Willy “Mink” De Ville’s worthy fourth album, released in late 1981 was more of the same - Latin influenced soul rock. Some classic De Ville on here - the straight-ahead rock of Just Give Me One Good Reason, the saxophone-dominated Maybe Tomorrow, the piano-driven street soul of Love And Emotion. I love the line "I run down the street to your block, up five flights of stairs - five flights of stairs...", something about the way De Ville repeats "five flights of stairs"

Love Me Like You Did Before is a storming, riffy rocker, while Teardrops Must Fall, So In Love Are We and the lovely She Was Made In Heaven all fit the tried and tested De Ville bill - romantic lyrics against a melodic backing delivered by De Ville’s unique, nasal but soulful voice.

End Of The Line is a laid-back but dramatic  (if that makes sense) close to the album, while the catchy and soulful The Power Of A Woman's Love came from the pen of often-forgotten US songwriter Eddie Hinton.

TRACK LISTING

1. Just Give Me One Good Reason
2. The Power Of A Woman's Love
3. Maybe Tomorrow
4. Teardrops Must Fall
5. You Better Move On
6. Love And Emotion
7. So In Love Are We
8. Love Me Like You Did Before
9. She Was Made In Heaven
10. End Of The Line                                              

Also present is a truly superb cover of The Rolling Stones’ sixties track You Better Move OnCritics at the time were starting to moan a bit about De Ville’s following the same tried and tested path with each album, which was a shame because his albums were all eminently listenable but I have to say I understood where they were coming from, to an extent. Not completely, though, as I still enjoyed the album a lot. I loved Mink De Ville, so I was always going to like it. I loved it and played it to death back in 1981-82. It was up there with Springsteen's The River at the time, for me, just as important. 

De Ville had this to say about the album, retrospectively -

"....I had band problems, manager problems, record company problems. And yeah, I had drug problems. Finally I got a new recording contract, with Atlantic, and a new manager. I cleaned up my act. I figured that since playing music with people I was friends with didn't seem to work out, I would hire some mercenaries, some cats who just wanted to play and get paid. And those guys turned out to be more devoted to the music than any band I ever had. They're professional, precise, but they're full of fire, too....."

You can tell, too. The band sound great on the album. It is a most under-valued piece of work.

B-

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