Brian Plummer & The Suspects - s/t

geoviangeovian Earth Orbit
edited December 2022 in Year-1985

Brian Plummer's music is as Canadian as the maple leaf flag is red, if you're into artists such as Ian Thomas, Idle Eyes and a drop of Bernie LaBarge then you'll be into this in double quick time.

Brian Plummer & The Suspects - st
ARTIST: Brian Plummer & The Suspects
ALBUM: Brian Plummer & The Suspects
LABEL: Duke Street Records
YEAR: 1985
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List

LINEUP: Brian Plummer - lead vocals, guitars * Gary Nicholson - guitars * Tom Szczesniak - bass, keyboards * Tim Thorney - keyboards, guitars, backing vocals, production * Gary Gray - keyboards, production, recording engineer * Jorn Andersen - drums, percussion

TRACK LISTING: 01 Central America Song * 92 All Day All Night * 03 Time Will Tell * 04 Anxiety * 05 It Felt Like Hell * 06 It's Not Easy * 07 Stop Running * 08 Might Makes Right * 09 Come To The Rescue * 10 Heart Full Of Soul



The late Brian Plummer is a Canadian musician we should have picked up on the Glory Daze radar years ago, as he fits the AOR demographic with ease. I won't rewrite the singer/guitarists history, you can read more over at the rather extensive and excellent Canadian

During his solo career Brian released five solo albums between 1980 and 2007, all of which are very hard to track down by the looks of things. After his third album 'Without A Mark' (1984, Duke Street), he created a band project called The Suspects which released its sole album on Duke Street in 1985, the only musician I am familiar with is drummer Jorn Andersen who was previously with Fludd, Mere Mortals and the trio First Fire. The first two bands are featured here at Glory Daze.

The Songs

Plummer apparently was one of the first signings to Duke Street, an astute decision, as the music is as Canadian as the maple leaf flag is red. If you're into artists such as Ian Thomas, Idle Eyes and a drop of Bernie LaBarge then you'll be into this in double quick time.

The lead song 'Central America Song' reminds me of the jangly style of fellow Canucks Idle Eyes. Are they singing about drugs and cartels? I'm not entirely sure as I couldn't find the lyrics online. The second highlight is the cruisy 'All Day All Night', very smooth AOR of the 1985 vintage.

'Time Will Tell' sees the Suspects moving into an edgy pop rock mode, the keyboard parts are sharp, it's continued on 'Anxiety', this could've been a good fit in the power-pop scene say during 1981 or 1982. The lush keyboards are introduced on the melodic ballad 'It Felt Like Hell'. It's all keys until the guitar solo appears at the 2min 30s mark.

'It's Not Easy' is all about parping synths and a stuttering rhythm pattern. It's definitely 1985 and that's probably where it should stay.. Lol. From this point, the album loses it appeal with several tracks shifting the overall sound to a cranky power pop come early 80's pop Rock style, which to me was not a good move. Tracks like 'Might Makes Right' and 'Come To The Rescue' spoil the broth, the closer 'Heart Full Of Soul' was a song made popular by The Yardbirds though it was originally written by 10cc alumni Graham Gouldman.

In Summary

Wikipedia mistakenly asserts that 'Without A Mark' was the debut Suspects album, which it quite obviously wasn't. Despite a single lifted from this album ('Central America Song' b/w 'Stop Running'), an alternative release of the album in Sweden on Alpha Records, plus a spate of touring dates across Canada, the Suspects though a solid if inconsistent album in that distinctive Canadian style, did not break through, and that as they say, was the end of that.

Plummer moved house across to British Columbia in 1987 and worked in Vancouver's jingle industry for awhile. He released two more albums which were low key affairs ('Plums', 1999 and 'Perfect World', 2007), before succumbing to cancer on April 30th 2008. Now I am on the hunt for those first three solo albums. Wish me luck.

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Central America Song

All Day All Night

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