Zappacosta - 1986 A To Z

geoviangeovian Earth Orbit
edited August 2 in year-1986


ARTIST: Zappacosta
LABEL: Capitol
YEAR: 1986


LINEUP: Alfie Zappacosta - vocals, guitars * Gerry Mosby - bass, drum programming * Gerald O'Brien - keyboards, keyboard programming

TRACK LISTING: 01 Turn It On * 02 When I Fall (In Love Again) * 03 Nothing Could Stand In Your Way * 04 Another Man's Gain * 05 Judgement Day * 06 Hi-Texodus * 07 You Belong To Me * 08 I Think About You * 09 Burnin' * 10 Nights I Remember * 11 Heroes>


The mid 80's was a busy period for Canada's best kept secret Alfie Zappacosta. After moving on from his 70's outfit Surrender, Alfie rebadged himself in 1983, and commenced a solo career.

His 1984 debut spawned a modicum of success. Tracks such as 'Passion', 'Start Again' (a prior Surrender track) and the Canadian hit 'We Should Be Lovers' saw Alfie gifted a Juno Award in 1984.

The following year, Alfie moved into the acting field, performing in the hit musical Evita, playing the role of Che Guevara.

With all this activity going on, Alfie cemented a deal with EMI Canada for the release of his second solo album 'A To Z'.

It was mentioned in the review of his debut album that it appeared the label was pitching his image/sound at the new romantic/pop audience.

A very valid point, and it seems the hi-tech nature was taken one step further with 'A To Z'.

Though my colleague RichardB was slightly disappointed with this album, I myself find it a good compendium to his other albums.

Being a huge fan, of course I couldn't say otherwise against our Alfie!

The Songs

With long-time compadre Gerry Mosby (The Moz to you and I..) and ex Wrabit keysman Gerald O'Brien in the fold, Alfie has kept it fairly tight - though there are contributions from the likes of Paul Janz, Marc LaFrance, Brian MacLeod and producer Bob Rock.

I've played this album back-to-back a few times and there's more to like than not.

'Turn It On' is a high-energy blast that gets the album off to an enthusiastic start.

'When I Fall (In Love Again)' is quite a funky piece, lots of slap bass and parping brass patches on the synth.. a track that Tim Feehan could be quite at home with.

'Nothing Could Stand In Your Way' was the album's initial single and video, a smooth ballad.

Continuing the high-energy/upbeat stance is 'Another Man's Gain', the neat keyboard fills make it a good listen.

As with the songtitle, 'Judgement Day' is delivered with the same sort of power that an ancient warlord would have unto his troops.

Swapping the vinyl over, 'You Belong To Me' is one of my favourites here, with a cool jangly guitar line and those ever-present tinkly ivories everywhere.

Back into mid-tempo/ballad territory is 'I Think Of You', this one is so melodic and heartfelt.

Picking up the pace is 'Burnin', a happy-go-lucky affair with instrumentation on overload - even the guitar solo is one out of the bag.

Smooth as late night chocolate is 'Nights I Remember', a pre-cursor to his material which would follow four years later perhaps?

The album finishes with the good time anthemic romp 'Heroes', an upbeat and positive sounding track with lyrics to suit.

In Summary

Four years later, Alfie would return with a less hi-tech/pop effort entitled 'Quick.. Don't Ask Any Questions..', an album that fuses jazz, pop and hard rock to great effect.

'A To Z' as a historical testament is a victim of its time, and one has to wind their consciousness back to 1986 and lock into the vibe that is being expressed here.

Any album from this revered artist is better than nothing. I only have a scratchy vinyl LP to listen to, I would love to know if this is out on CD (I'm guessing it once was).

A pristine copy of it would go down a treat. You can read about Alfie elsewhere on this site, or check out what he is doing on his website, URL listed above.

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