Little River Band (LRB) - 1986 No Reins

geoviangeovian Earth Orbit
edited August 2 in year-1986


ARTIST: Little River Band (LRB)
ALBUM: No Reins
LABEL: Capitol
SERIAL: ST-12480
YEAR: 1986
CD REISSUE: 1986, Capitol/EMI (Japan), CP32 5151


LINEUP: John Farnham - vocals * Graham Goble - guitars * Stephen Housden - guitars * David Hirschfelder - keyboards * Wayne Nelson - vocals, bass * Steven Prestwich - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Face In The Crowd * 02 It's Just A Matter Of Time * 03 Time For Us * 04 No Reins On Me * 05 When The War Is Over * 06 Thin Ice * 07 How Many Nights? * 08 Forever Blue * 09 Paper Paradise * 10 It Was The Night


Through their long and varied history, LRB have delivered quality melodic rock.

Their mid 80's era was the one that interested me the most, with albums such as 'Time Exposure', 'The Net', the pomp-tastic 'Playing To Win' and this one 'No Reins' all containing ample moments of radio friendly rock.

During this phase, the band had recruited John Farnham as their lead singer, taking over from Glenn Shorrock, and 'No Reins' is the third and last installment of the Farnham era of LRB.

For this album, the singing is shared between Farnham and Nelson, an extremely good singer in his own right!

The quality is there, and though musically understated, you can tell many of the songs have something special about them.

The Songs

The lead-off track 'Face In The Crowd' is a luke-warm start, but things really take off with Track Two 'It's Just A Matter Of Time' where Farnham's voice and the myriad of AOR/keyboard touches get to inter-mingle.

It's followed by the killer ballad 'Time For Us', and then onto the punchy AOR of 'No Reins On Me'. A very nice pairing.

The Cold Chisel staple 'When The War Is Over' (written by drummer Steve Prestwich) is next, and gets a superb workout here, and is on a par with the Chisel effort.

Perhaps this one is stronger in the harmony vocal department and Farnham's rendition soars into the stratosphere, though Jimmy Barnes' version is awesome too.

Onto Side Two, and we're looking at a killer collection of AOR. The musical statement that is 'Thin Ice' is an impassioned plea to the world, warning of future disasters, done so with massive keys and stirring choruses.

Hirschfelder gets another workout with the keyboard laden 'How Many Nights' while the luscious 'Forever Blue' is a personal highlight, perhaps the smoothest AOR on the album.

In contrast, 'Paper Paradise' is an energetic piece, jumpy and bouncy all in one.

In Summary

Despite the classy songs, the album virtually went unnoticed around the planet. Jeez, what was everyone listening to back then?

As mentioned previously, this was the last of the Farnham era albums. He went solo soon after, striking massive success with his 'Whispering Jack' album during the 1986/87 period, and an assured career for many years later.

LRB continued on, with singer Glenn Shorrock returning to the fold for 1988's 'Monsoon' album.

'No Reins' is not the easiest album to find these days on CD, even rarer finding this as a Japanese copy. Good luck, it's worth the hunt.

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