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Yet Another GREAT Review!


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Raspberries Still Ripe
By Mark Brown

Better late than never. Thirty years after the Raspberries blazed new trails in power pop and concise songwriting, they're back with a package that pulls it all together and gives their legacy its due.

It's not just the fine musical performances on the discs; it's also the liner notes by Bruce Springsteen (noting that "Overnight Sensation (Hit Record)" "should go down as one of the great mini-rock-opera masterpieces of all time") and a photo inside the package of John Lennon in a Raspberries shirt.

The Cleveland band regrouped in 2005 for a small run of reunion shows (including one in Denver) that's lovingly preserved on Live on Sunset Strip, a concert album produced by Mark Linnett, the Beach Boys engineer who knows a thing or two about mixing harmonies.

Those harmonies are here with the reunion of the classic lineup—Eric Carmen, Wally Bryson, Dave Smalley and Jim Bonfanti—augmented by enough backing musicians to give the songs their due. The radio classics are here—"Let's Pretend," "Go All the Way," "I Wanna Be With You" and more—along with album tracks and covers that perfectly fit the band, including a cover of The Who's "I Can't Explain" that should have Roger Daltrey worrying about job security.

With the band's breakup and Carmen's solo career, these songs never got driven into the ground like those of so many groups from the '70s, so both the band and the ecstatic audience are eager to make the most of them. The deluxe package has a bonus DVD with footage that, oddly, contains only five songs from the show. Fans certainly would have loved to see more. But as the DVD notes, "They said it would never happen," and it has. One hopes the band uses this as a springboard for more touring.

Rocky Mountain News , August 14, 2007



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Nice review.

I'm hoping Rykodisc has sent a review copy to The New York Daily News since they ranked Raspberries as one of the Top 10 concert events of 2005. The Chicago Sun Times (two stories in 2005 on the band) and L. A. Weekly would be two others that the label should be sure have copies of the album for review. I still have hopes Cleveland Scene will do a review, too.

Don Krider :)

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This morning I received an unsolicited email from Amazon announcing the availability of Sunset Strip. It must because of my buying habits, but it's cool that they have a proactive marketing effort. The reviews on Amazon are over the top.

"Coupled with the sheer talent of each band member at their craft, spilling over this record in bucketfuls, this is perhaps the greatest live power pop record ever made. If Cheap Trick's "Live At Budokan" has an older brother, this is it."

Now THAT's a memorable quote.

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