Full performer name: Clive Gregson/Christine Collister.
Compilation producers: Bill Inglot, Gary Stewart.
Personnel: Christine Collister (vocals); Clive Gregson (vocals, guitar, guitars, electric guitar, mandolin, organ, vibraphone, tambourine); Howard Lees (guitar, guitars); Ruari McFarlane (guitar, electric guitar); Rory McFarlane (bass instrument, double bass); Martin Hughes (drums, percussion).
Audio Mixer: David Kenny.
Liner Note Authors: Clive Gregson; Howard Lees; Martin Hughes; Rory McFarlane.
Recording information: Ideal Sound Recorders, London (1987).
Photographers: Fin Costello; Julie Angel .
Originally issued in the U.K. on the Topic label and later licensed for U.S. release by Rhino, this is one of Gregson & Collister's more uneven projects, but is praiseworthy overall. The influence of Richard Thompson is felt throughout, especially in the often vinegary tone of Gregson's Stratocaster, but Gregson's writing is mature, self-assured, and original enough to keep that influence from becoming overwhelming. The bluesy "I Wouldn't Treat a Dog" bumps up nicely against the shimmery and hook-laden folk-pop of "Everybody Cheats on You," while Thompson is probably owed royalties for "That Same Mistake." That's the beginning of the album, and then things get a bit spottier. The slide guitar on "This Tender Trap" lends an air of Delta blues to a song whose chord progression is half Tin Pan Alley and half Brill Building, and the result is more puzzling than involving; "I Specialize" combines an awkward lyrical refrain with an awkward chord progression, to predictable effect. But brilliant moments outnumber disappointing ones by about two to one, making this album a solid investment for any fan of British folk-rock. ~ Rick Anderson