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Eric Carmen(1975) On Second Thought

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Don’t think I posted this review before...

Eric Carmen – ‘Eric Carmen’ (1975): On Second Thought

BY Beverly Paterson

It was a bleak day when Raspberries announced their break up in April of 1975. For the previous few years, the Cleveland, Ohio band had electrified the AM dial with pop rock jewels such as “Go All the Way,” “I Wanna Be With You,” “Let’s Pretend” and “Overnight Sensation (Hit Record).” The group also released four excellent albums, toured extensively and roped in reams of glowing press. 

Armed with a reservoir of material, lead singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Eric Carmen immediately embarked on a solo career after Raspberries called it quits. Arriving in the racks in the fall of 1975, Eric Carmen testified to be an artistic accomplishment as well as a commercial smash. 

The self-titled Arista-released project bore three solid brass hits, beginning with the orchestrated power ballad “All By Myself,” which soared to No. 2 early in 1976. Like “All By Myself,” the album’s subsequent single, “Never Gonna Fall In Love Again,” was freckled with classical flourishes, but favored a brighter and lighter Beach Boys-flavored exterior. Peaking at No. 11 in late spring, “Never Gonna Fall in Love Again” was followed by the majestic “Sunrise,” which cracked the Top 40 that autumn. 

Aside from the loneliness theme driving “All By Myself” and “Never Gonna Fall In Love Again,” Eric Carmen contains other candid confessions. There’s the finely articulated “Great Expectations,” that concerns disappointments so often encountered in the music biz, while the fetching pop-rock rhythms of “No Hard Feelings” imparts understanding and forgiveness regarding the dissolvement of Raspberries. 

Further notable tracks heard on Eric Carmen are the bubbly zest of “That’s Rock ‘n’ Roll” and the romantic “Last Night,” which is threaded with classical overtures. The quality of the songs and performances on this album are utterly faultless. Carmen’s choir boy vocals are as emotive and melodious as can be, where the arrangements of the tunes are thoughtfully and tightly-constructed. Generous servings of gorgeous piano episodes, matched by shapely hooks and harmonies additionally illuminate the setting.

As evidenced by certain Raspberries cuts – “I Can Remember” and “Don’t Want to Say Goodbye” being specific examples – Carmen always had a soft spot for big, lush productions. Although Eric Carmen does have its rocking moments, the majority of the songs bend towards the gentle and glossy end of the slope. Wearing his heart and influences on his sleeve, Carmen clearly created an album true to his soul. 

For the next decade, Eric Carmen continued to harvest serious chart action. “She Did It,” “Change Of Heart,” “I Wanna Hear It From Your Lips,” “Hungry Eyes” and “Make Me Lose Control” are just some of the singles that penetrated the charts. Not only is Carmen a tremendously talented guy, but he is greatly admired and respected by his peers. His compositions have been covered by an amazing assortment of folks, ranging from Frank Sinatra to Motley Crue to the Bay City Rollers to Diana Ross to Shaun Cassidy to Olivia Newton John to Mike Reno of Loverboy and Ann Wilson of Heart, and the list goes on …

—Something Else Reviews, August 6, 2018

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Well-written review... The only nitpick I have is... I wouldn't describe the song "Last Night" as "romantic." Maybe the writer is feelin' it, but it's more of a kiss-off song, to me. Otherwise, good find and good read! 


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On 4/13/2020 at 11:08 AM, LC said:

Well-written review... The only nitpick I have is... I wouldn't describe the song "Last Night" as "romantic." Maybe the writer is feelin' it, but it's more of a kiss-off song, to me. Otherwise, good find and good read! 

Agreed LC, "romantic" seems like a strange adjective to attach to "Last Night," but otherwise it was quite a nice review!

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Here is the “Comments” section page to this review...I don’t even understand half of the references...


Professor Boredom
3/21/14 10:34am
I'm not trying to be a dick, but is this a sponsored post? However you guys need to keep the lights on is fine with me, but this seems like a weird (and weirdly informative) Newswire.

3/21/14 10:45am
Are they trying to replace the Dawes meme with Eric Carmen?

Nate the Great
3/21/14 10:46am
Dammit I was just typing that.

The Flyin Hawaiian
3/21/14 10:47am
If so, the ad salesman who thought there was substantial overlap between 'unironic Eric Carmen fans' and 'AV Club readers' needs to find a job better suited to his skills.

Nate the Great
3/21/14 10:51am
Usually the sponsored posts have the comments section locked so we don't bitch about how they sold out to the man on them, thus ruining their sweet sweet corporate messaging. Maybe Marah's just really loved Dirty Dancing so much that she just had to write up about the "Hungry Eyes" guy, since that was her jam in elementary school. And no one puts Marah in a corner…

3/21/14 10:08am
"Don't call me fat, buttfucker!"

Judas Booth
3/21/14 11:14am
Carmen, there's an 80-ft satellite dish sticking out of your ass!

3/21/14 11:33am
Respect my authoritah

3/21/14 11:54am
Not the same quote, but definitely the first person I thought of!…

Welcome Shaq Kotter
3/21/14 10:44am
*Weeps in closet with shotgun as "All By Myself" plays.*

souse chef
3/21/14 10:46am
Is Fred Phelps in there with you?
What? Too soon?

3/21/14 10:56am
I think you are misreading the general attitude towards Fred Phelps on this site. If anything, that joke wasn't soon enough.

UmbrielWelcome Shaq Kotter
3/21/14 1:32pm
…and an attorney for the Rachmaninov estate knocks on the door

marvin van cleef
3/21/14 12:06pm
A couple of guys from the Raspberries and a couple of guys from the Rascals formed a band called Fotomaker which was pretty damn good. Frank Vinci was the singer who wasn't in either band. I think they put out one or two albums around 1977-78

3/21/14 12:18pm
Another Fotomaker fan? Where have you been all my life?

marvin van cleef
3/21/14 2:33pm
On The Other Side. All jokes aside - Say The Same For You is my favorite and has been on my ipod for years. A great power pop tune.

3/21/14 10:46am
Thus challenging my preconceived notion that all Eric Carmen is inessential.

3/21/14 12:16pm
Only because you have this preconceived notion do I offer this, in an effort to expand your horizons: http://www.bullz-eye.com/mu…

3/21/14 10:13am
Finally a follow up to his rendition of "Come Sail Away"!

Andy Tuttle
3/21/14 11:24am
His "Poker Face" cover was pretty badass too.

Those Eyebrows
3/21/14 12:22pm
Though obviously his best song will always be "Swiss Colony Beef Log."

Andy Tuttle
3/21/14 12:44pm
What about "Kyle's Mom is a Big Fat Bitch"?

Ding L Berry
3/26/14 4:55am

3/21/14 11:16am
Why do The Raspberries get dissed all the time…THEY WERE AWESOME!

Gentle Herpes
3/21/14 11:29am
Haters gotta hate.

3/21/14 10:33am
Good gawd "Go All the Way" is such an excellent song…

Gentle Herpes
3/21/14 11:14am
Perfect pop.

souse chef
3/21/14 10:46am
When did Rick Springfield become an emblem of big hair and big ballads? I thought all anyone remembered anymore was "Jesse's Girl" which is not a ballad and doesn't feature big hair. I love that the "new" track is one that Carmen wrote that became a hit for Shaun Cassidy (the other being "Hey Deanie"). I used to play Cassidy's version of "That's Rock and Roll" at the end of the night when I DJ'd because it would signal that the dancing was over but it was so mild and happy that everyone would still be bouncing and in a good mood when they hit the sidewalk.

billy boy
3/21/14 1:52pm
The cover image for his "Tonight You're Mine" album always flashes through my mind as I orgasm, right before I start sobbing inconsolably.

3/21/14 10:12am
He probably gets really annoyed when people ask him what Stan, Kenny, and Kyle are up to nowadays.

Huo Yuanjia
3/21/14 11:12am
"The Body of Christ! Sleek swimmer's body, all muscled up and toned!"

Captain Caveman
3/21/14 1:11pm
Vote Up if you were disappointed when you realized it was Eric Carmen and not Eric Cartman.

3/21/14 10:31am
"California, is nice to the homeless. Californ-yaw yaw, super coo to the homeless!"

3/21/14 10:17am
Oh hey! Singer from Fastball's dad has an album. I guess music runs in that family.

Marty McKee
3/21/14 11:14am
I gotta say—I never expected Eric Carmen to get an article at the AV Club. Kudos, guys.

Lord Spango
3/23/14 9:00pm
What about Glory of Love from the Karate Kid soundtrack? Or wasn't that Eric Carmen?

3/21/14 10:52am
"Like Rick Springfield and Richard Marx, Eric Carmen" is awesome.

Reposted a7x Fan
3/21/14 10:12am
can you buy this at hot topic?? - botdf_freak15, 2 months ago

Excitable Misunderstood Genius
3/21/14 1:03pm
Eric Cartman maybe. Eric Carmen, probably not.

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