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Landers, Audrey - 1988 Secrets
» Posted by Avatar

gdazegod
on September 03 2008, In 1988 Articles , 4 Comments , 6082 Reads , Print



ARTIST: Landers, Audrey
ALBUM: Secrets
LABEL: WEA Germany
SERIAL: 242 479-2
YEAR: 1988

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Audrey Landers - lead and backing vocals

Guests: Axel Willer, Dean Parks, Michael Landau, Wesley Plass - guitars * Al Camarro, Claus Robert Kruse, Greg Mathieson, Jon Gilutin, Steve Singer - keyboards, synths * Casey Young - synclavier * Bob Parr, Heiner Malecha, Sean Ingoldsby - bass * Denny Fongheiser, Lemmy Lembrecht - percussion * Denny Fongheiser, Martin Langer - drums * Doug Norwine - sax * Mario Argandona, Bebe Cross, Kristina Nichols, Dario Farina, L. B. Horn, Merry Green, Pam Neal, Tato Gomez, Yvette Marine - backing vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Gone With The Wind * 02 Never Wanna Dance (When I'm Blue) * 03 Amor, Amor My Love * 04 You Can Tame My Heart * 05 We Never Lived A Romance * 06 Thru The Eyes Of Winter * 07 Starship (We're All Alone) * 08 All Of My Heart * 09 It Takes 2 To Fly * 10 Chains Of Love * 11 Going Out Of My Mind * 12 Silverbird

WEBLINKS: www.landersproductionz.com


Background
Some of you with minds and memories that stretch back to the early 80's, will remember the Landers sisters: Audrey and Judy. As actresses with roles on TV, it was Audrey who stole the show as Afton Cooper - with her lounge club singer character on the popular soap 'Dallas', being both the love interest for J.R Ewing and Cliff Barnes.. haha! However, it is Audrey's prowess as a singer that demands more interest. With a singing career encased in Euro pop, she gained popularity for singing mainly about faraway travel destinations with exotic names. Hugely popular in Europe (Germany mainly), Asia and Latin American countries, Audrey released a handful of albums. But it is her 1988 album 'Secrets' that will strike broad appeal to AORsters, with names such as Michael Landau, Greg Mathieson (Lee Ritenour, David Roberts), Denny Fongheiser (Heart) and AOR underground fave Kristina Nichols (The Storm) all providing musical assistance. Thankfully, Audrey is not singing about Monte Carlo or Destination Tropicana this time around, and the music is not as 'camp' as her previous efforts, instead 'Secrets' is a more serious and superbly produced bout of AOR/pop bliss that'll just melt your headphones!


The Songs
For musical comparisons, this would sit nicely as ABBA doing AOR, or perhaps the female equivalent of Russell Hitchcock's solo album which also came out the same year. Audrey's voice is delicious, and carries itself well in this genre. Her phrasing is similar to Robin Beck and Japanese heroine Mari Hamada, who were both pursuing AOR interests during this same timeframe. Opener 'Gone With The Wind' appeals in much he same way that Fiona did. A couple of Euro style pop songs in 'Never Wanna Dance (When I'm Blue)' and the punchy Laban like 'All Of My Heart' remind us that this style was very much Audrey's bread and butter for a few years. 'Amor Amor My Love' is a change to the AOR climate a la Martee Lebow, whereas 'You Can Tame My Heart' allows us to hear Landers voice take on a honey roughened edge a la Bonnie Tyler. This AOR beauty is topped off by a killer Michael Landau guitar solo. The best song on the album is the epic like quality of 'Thru The Eyes Of Winter'. With this one vocal performance she erases memories of all other 70's and 80's female performers in one foul swoop. Impressive stuff. 'Going Out Of My Mind' is the sort of pure AOR that'll have you spinning in wonderment. Audrey can land the 'ballad' thing with no problems. Check out 'We Never Lived A Romance' and the aching 'It Takes 2 To Fly'. Just when I thought the album was on the verge of greatness, along comes 'Silverbird', which returns to the Boney M come ABBA sound of 'camp' pop that Landers is better known for. It's happy singalong fare, but just a touch out of place on this album.


In Summary
Interestingly, Audrey co-write many of these tracks with other songwriters, so the lady was certainly talented, that there is no doubt. She went on to release a handful of albums following this, including the well rated 1991 effort 'Rendez Vous'. Audrey, long with sister Judy and mum Ruth is still in the business, Audrey making a return to the small screen in 2008 in the TV show 'Burn Notice'. A gifted performer, who looks and sounds great. Don't let those dizzy songs of travel and holiday destinations put you off, there is more to Audrey Landers than what you see at first glance.


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Comments
#1 | grahamfenn on September 04 2008 08:06:57
Brilliant FF Pop AOR. Just take a listen to the Audio samples. If this is your thing this is a must. I had never heard of Audrey Landers in the singing context before and am pleasantly surprised.

Does anyone have a copy they can upload?

Graham
#2 | code4 on October 28 2015 10:34:16
The opener was certainly decent stuff. Reminded me of something Jennifer Rush might have wrote or sung (even if Landers voice itself does not really share much in common with Jennifer Rush). "Never wanna Dance" was not so great. Despite nice keyboard at the intro and following the pass of the choruses this one was too tacky and Kareoke sounding to me. Same for "Amor Amor My Love" and some others like "Chains of Love" which was pretty awful though the review is definitely right to single out the closer "Silverbird" as the biggest sore thumb of the record. In fact i would call it a true horror for an AOR fan to listen to. "It takes 2 to Fly" and "Through the Eyes of Winter" are a little safe and formulaic. Maybe the latter which the reviewer singles out as a favourite, isn't a throwaway but neither do that much for me personally. The song "Starship" was lacking in any bridge instead just having a momentary pause and a few sound effects. A wasted opportunity to have made this song less forgettable. On the brighter side, along with the opener, "You Can Tame My Heart" is definitely quite nice stuff and certainly worthy of the pop AOR tag. "We never lived a Romance" would be the next best to me. Landers can sing well (and i do like her acting abilities whenever i notice her on tv in stuff). It's a pity the material, or most of it, wasn't executed better here if you ask me. With some of the names involved i'm sure this could have been made into a considerably better album. I suspect instead the record label wanted to keep the majority of the commercial focus on a pop audience while merely leaving out some bait for the more discerning quality pop/AOR fans. Ears differ though and i'm glad some others rate this higher. I will keep the cd and perhaps become more fond of it in the future. I bought it about 6 months ago as one of the first albums i picked up on recommendation of this site. Cheers
#3 | gdazegod on October 28 2015 13:18:11
Dave, if you ever get sick of the CD, I'll buy it off ya!
#4 | gdazegod on April 09 2016 10:23:10
Audrey Landers - 1988 Eyes Of Winter
YouTube Video
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