Robin Beck - Underneath

Robin Beck
Underneath
HMMR Records
2013
8
Robin Beck returns just 2 years after the superb and career resurrecting “The Great Escape” that saw her properly touring Europe for the first time, to great acclaim and she seems quite unstoppable.
 
Newly energized and quite sure of herself, the lovely Roxette actually, awed us when she posted a quite sensuous cover depicting her ashore, like some sort of a rock n roll castaway!  But who could tell about the contents of the album, by looking at a cover? The “short samples” at the website, didn't impress me much in all honesty, but as a lifelong fan I would not leave my collection incomplete, however when I received the actual album (signed and all) I was actually positively surprised, since the “samples” didn't seem to be too representative, of all the songs or do them too much justice...
 
“Wrecking Ball” is a fun opener that was written by Germany’s “Crush Boys” marking an outside collaboration, for Robin, but I guess, the song fits the style pretty well and Robin really, sings it with lots of conviction. It’s up-tempo and lots of fun. A bit like robin, most of the time!
 
“Ain’t that Just Like Love” is a collaboration between a few people, among which Fiona, who Robin, are close friends with. It’s a nice soft rocker with lots of passion and a really cool solo and shouty sing-a-long chorus. Good stuff!
 
“Sprain” if I am not mistaken is the one song Robin previewed at last years “Firefest” but not knowing the tune, I could not really decide if I liked it too much. The chorus is a bit anticlimactic, but it sort of works as a counter balance to the really up-tempo and catchy verses, so it's a pretty good song overall.
 
“Underneath” is a beautiful, heartfelt ballad. Lots of soul... I can’t find words to describe it really so I won’t try to... just listen to it and allow yourself to be submerged in the beauty of music...
 
“Catfight” is predictably a little “silly” and Robin’s voice sounds either processed or extra smokey :p It’s got a quirky little riff and its I suppose a girly rocker. Interesting, but I’m not a girly and well if there’s a catfight, get me out of there, or at least, get me a beer first!
 
“Check Your Attitude” continues with the “fighting” theme. It’s a nice up-tempo rocker, obviously about a neglected woman (again I can’t directly because I am not one....) but it’s nice enough to listen to. Well to be honest, I’d have this over a “Catfight” – any-day. Oh and fellow dudes. Respect your dudettes, show ‘em love ‘n respect. Buy ‘em flowers. Tell ‘em you Love ‘em, but mean it too! Make Sweet Love to Them. Or they’ll give you #$#$# and they will have a point I suppose!
 
“Burning Me Down” is a duet between Robin and her hubby, House of Lords singer, James Christian, who recently had a health scare that he seems to now have gone through, successfully. It’s a beautiful, jewel of a song.
 
“Perfect Storm” is a decent rocker, but it has some weird, howls mid-way that, sort of sound a little out of place or at least misconceived. Other than that – decent chorus, cool short lead and all. If only that “howl” wasn’t there... it’s like killing somebody in a gruesome way.
 
“Ya Can’t Fight Love” – Can Ya?! Is a funky rocker that is really 80s in its style, but it’s great and Robin does a great job bringing it to life. Perfect pop-rock from the yesteryears, given a new coat of paint and actually sounding every bit as good today. I’d have this perfect song – over the over produced, over “corrected” songs that are on most radio playlists these days, any day of the week.
 
“I Swear the Nights” is a bona fide power ballad, with all the trademarks that a proper representative of the genre should have. Big harmonies, Big Chorus, everything about it is great!
 
Finally “Follow You” closes the album on a very positive note. Even if it’s quite up-tempo, which is sort of unusual for a closer, it sort of has this cleansing – euphoric energy that makes you jump up and down forgetting everything and so manages to tie up things rather nicely and leave you feeling satisfied and gratified!
 
All in all, “Underneath” is much better than I had hoped, based on the rather misleading “short online samples” and I’m grateful it turned out this way. Robin’s a beautiful lady inside and out and it sort of shines through her music. She’s getting better with age, like a fine wine, but damn it, she must have found the inverse aging process because she’s holding on damn well, on every possible level. She’s one Grande Hot Rocking Mamma Mia (and a half)!
 
Now seriously – go on, give the album a spin, don’t let the samples really put you off, if you liked the previous one, but they seem not too interesting, and head over to robinbeckrocks.com or to your nearest record shop or online vendor of choice to get it! It seriously rocks!