“Parallel Lines” by Blondie - album review

features in: Album Chart of 1978Album Chart of the Decade: 1970s1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die external-link.png

TJR says

The album blasts in with a killer version of The Nerves’ 1976 single, “Hanging On The Telephone”, and Blondie boss the tune. The ubiquitous “One Way Or Another” follows, and the group continue to show they can sometimes deliver the goods outside of the 45s. The mighty “Picture This” is next, and leaves absolutely no doubt in regards to the special powers of this band; for the third album in-a-row we’ve had tracks of the “all-time classic” variety. Amazingly, they proceed to bomb with “Fade Away And Radiate” (actually the b-side to “Picture This”) – I find it bizarre and disturbing that Blondie can suddenly attempt to reinvent themselves as the New York Pink Floyd; an epic fail. Why is it albums often have the very best tracks followed by the very worst? This leaves me reeling, trust having been lost. Neither “Pretty Baby” nor “I Know But I Don’t Know” do much to restore faith, but “11:59” perks me right back up with its soar-away feel-good pop brilliance; all the fun of the fair with none of the schmaltz. All of my earlier doubts are then cast aside completely with the sheer excellence of “Sunday Girl” and “Heart Of Glass”. A fun-packed cover of “I’m Gonna Love You Too” (Buddy Holly, 1958) seals the deal on this zippy affair. They walk a thin-line sometimes, but they always end up on the right side of the fence for me; they're never too far away from a Clem-tastic snap of stick-twirling cool.

The Jukebox Rebel

A1 [02:17] 8.0.png Blondie - Hanging On The Telephone (Jack Lee) New Wave
A2 [03:31] 7.9.png Blondie - One Way Or Another (Deborah Harry, Nigel Harrison) New Wave
A3 [02:53] 9.7.png Blondie - Picture This (Deborah Harry, Chris Stein, Jimmy Destri) New Wave
A4 [03:57] 4.1.png Blondie - Fade Away And Radiate (Chris Stein) New Wave
A5 [03:16] 5.3.png Blondie - Pretty Baby (Deborah Harry, Chris Stein) New Wave
A6 [03:53] 5.3.png Blondie - I Know But I Don’t Know (Frank Infante) New Wave
B1 [03:19] 8.2.png Blondie - 11:59 (Jimmy Destri) New Wave
B2 [02:55] 5.7.png Blondie - Will Anything Happen (Jack Lee) New Wave
B3 [03:01] 8.9.png Blondie - Sunday Girl (Chris Stein) New Wave
B4 [05:50] 8.5.png Blondie - Heart Of Glass (Deborah Harry, Chris Stein) New Wave
B5 [02:03] 6.8.png Blondie - I’m Gonna Love You Too (Niki Sullivan, Norman Petty, Joe Mauldin) Rock n Roll / Rockabilly
B6 [03:21] 5.7.png Blondie - Just Go Away (Deborah Harry) Pop

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