Billy Joel – The Bridge (1986/2014) [Official Digital Download 24bit/96kHz]

Billy Joel – The Bridge (1986/2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 40:36 minutes | 839 MB | Genre: Rock
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Columbia Records

Riding high on the blockbuster An Innocent Man and with a new jet-setting bride at his side, Billy Joel took full advantage of the high life, as is clear from The Bridge, an album that unwittingly celebrates the excesses of the Reagan years. While he hasn’t quite settled into middle age, Joel is ready to take advantage of his wealth and status, recruiting a hero (Ray Charles) and a new wave kid (Cyndi Lauper) for duets, turning to Sting for inspiration (“Running on Ice”), fronting a big band (“Big Man on Mulberry Street”), writing a song for a movie (“Modern Woman”), and picking up the guitar (“A Matter of Trust”), just for the hell of it. You could say that it’s eclectic, but it’s scattershot, because it’s just Joel showing off his musical skills. He’s done this before, to great effect on Turnstiles, but this is all about hubris and, as such, it sounds exactly like its time. From its processed, distorted guitars to its hollow synthesizers, The Bridge sounds dated and it’s his most uneven since Streetlife Serenade. Even on the hits, he sounds as if he’s stretching — “This Is the Time” is labored compared to “Just the Way You Are” (not to mention considerably more vulgar); “A Matter of Trust” never hits upon a solid riff like “Sometimes a Fantasy”; “Modern Woman” is catchy but fluffy; “Baby Grand” is weighed down by Joel’s vocal affectations. In context of the album, they’re fairly enjoyable, but they hint at the dry spell that was just around the corner. Nevertheless, Joel still has enough panache and is riding on so much exuberance that The Bridge remains an entertaining listen, especially if it’s viewed as a Reagan-era artifact. It just doesn’t compare to what came before. –Stephen Thomas Erlewine

01. Billy Joel – Running On Ice (03:18)
02. Billy Joel – This Is the Time (05:01)
03. Billy Joel – A Matter of Trust (04:12)
04. Billy Joel – Modern Woman (03:53)
05. Billy Joel duet with Ray Charles – Baby Grand (duet with Ray Charles) (04:04)
06. Billy Joel – Big Man On Mulberry Street (05:30)
07. Billy Joel – Temptation (04:16)
08. Billy Joel featuring Cyndi Lauper – Code of Silence (05:16)
09. Billy Joel – Getting Closer (05:02)

Billy Joel – piano, synthesizers, vocals, Fender Rhodes on “Getting Closer”
Liberty DeVitto – drums, percussion
Doug Stegmeyer – bass guitar
David Brown – guitars, acoustic 12-string and electric guitars on “Code of Silence”, guitar on “Getting Closer”
Russell Javors – guitars
Peter Hewlett – background vocals on “Running on Ice”
Rob Mounsey – synthesizers on “Running on Ice”; orchestration on “This Is the Time”, “Modern Woman” and “Big Man on Mulberry Street”
Jeff Bova – synthesizers on “A Matter of Trust” and “Code of Silence”; orchestration on “Temptation”
Jimmy Bralower – percussion on “Modern Woman”
Mark Rivera – tenor saxophone on “Modern Woman”, alto saxophone on “Temptation”
Ray Charles – vocals and piano on “Baby Grand”
Vinnie Colaiuta – drums on “Baby Grand”
Dean Parks – guitar on “Baby Grand”
Patrick Williams – arrangements on “Baby Grand”
Ron Carter – acoustic bass on “Big Man on Mulberry Street”
Eddie Daniels – alto saxophone]] on “Big Man on Mulberry Street”
Michael Brecker – tenor saxophone on “Big Man on Mulberry Street”
Ronnie Cuber – baritone saxophone on “Big Man on Mulberry Street”
Mark Stamm – trumpet on “Big Man on Mulberry Street”
Alan Rubin – trumpet on “Big Man on Mulberry Street”
Dave Bargeron – trombone on “Big Man on Mulberry Street”
Philippe Saisse – orchestration on “Temptation”
Cyndi Lauper – vocals on “Code of Silence”
Steve Winwood – Hammond B3 organ on’”Getting Closer”
Neil Jason – bass guitar on “Getting Closer”
John McCurry – guitar on “Getting Closer”


Related Posts

%d bloggers like this: