Home / Album Reviews / Wendy James – The Price Of The Ticket

Wendy James – The Price Of The Ticket

album by:
Wendy James
Version:
Audio CD
Price:
£11.99

Reviewed by:
Rating:
3
On February 22, 2016
Last modified:November 11, 2016

Summary:

Wendy's joined by some big names from the Punk and New Wave scene for her latest album 'The Price of The Ticket' There's undoubtably some great musicianship and Wendy's voice has a very seductive quality but I felt there were two many mellow tracks and I'd love to here a few more upbeat songs like 'Bad Intentions and a Bit of Cruelty' which was the highlight track of the album for me.

 

If I mention the name Wendy James to any hot blooded male of a certain age the reaction ranges from Cor to Phwoar!!! Usually with a reference to the iconic video for I Want Your Love by Transvision Vamp. Wendy did indeed have the good looks to rival Marilyn Monroe or Brigitte Bardot and nearly 30 years on she still looks just as amazing. Wendy was in the band Transvision Vamp for five years from 1986, after the band split she did some solo work before forming the band Racine in 2004. When Racine split in 2008 she concentrated on solo projects and her new solo LP The Price Of The Ticket sees her joined by some big names from the Punk and New Wave scene. Lenny Kaye (The Patti Smith Group) on lead & rhythm guitar, Glen Matlock (Sex Pistols) on bass, James Sclavunos (Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds) on drums, James Williamson (Iggy &The Stooges on lead guitar, rhythm guitar and bass Guitar and Steve Mackay (Iggy &The Stooges) on baritone saxophone. Wendy herself, isn’t just a pretty face, as well as vocals she plays rhythm guitar and keys. The Price Of The Ticket was recorded in New York, mixed in Berkeley, California and released last Friday (19th February 2016) following a pledge music campaign.

The album starts off on a mellow note with Paloma’s Downs, with Wendy’s voice having a very seductive but girlish quality. Some strong keyboards and chugging riffs give it a flavour of Roger Daltrey’s Free Me in places. Whilst there were a lot of mellow and gentle tracks the album isn’t depressing per se but I did pick up a lot of anger and angst in the lyrics with titles like Why Oh Why Do You Hurt Me Still?  and Farewell To Love and lines such as ‘Maybe it would be better if we just leave each other’ in Love From the 9th and ‘I’m never going to see you again’ in Screamin’ Back Washington’. King Rat with it’s staccato rhythm reminded me of Human Fly by The Cramps meets Rock Lobster by The B52’s and Why Oh Why Do You Hurt Me Still?  had a bit of similar vibe but with a bit of a Hawaiin beat thrown in. Farewell To Love had me thinking of Cathy’s Clown by The Everly Brothers. In Cowboy Rhythm I picked up a Beat Surrender by The Jam flavour albeit a little slower. A couple of more upbeat tracks came in the last two songs which were covers of Fred ‘Sonic’ Smith and Bob Dylan songs.

My favourite track was Bad Intentions and a Bit of Cruelty which with it’s (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction by The Rolling Stones (originally by Otis Redding) meets Ever Fallen in Love by The Buzzcocks which made me want to get up and strut my stuff. As I said it’s not depressing per se but I did think there were too many mellow tracks and not enough tracks like Bad Intentions and a Bit of Cruelty or the two covers. Maybe I was expecting Wendy James The Price of The Ticket to be more like her earlier work with Tranvision Vamp and alas it wasn’t but there’s undoubtably some expert musicianship and Wendy’s voice has a very seductive quality. I would put it on as background music, if I had people round who were not as heavily into rock music as me. I, personally, would have liked the album to have a few more of the more upbeat tracks.

Highlight Track: Bad Intentions and a Bit of Cruelty

Track List:

1: Paloma’s Downs
2: Indigent Blues
3: King Rat
4: Love From the 9th
5: Bad Intentions and a Bit of Cruelty
6: You’re a Dirtbomb, Lester
7: Screamin’ Back Washington
8: Why Oh Why Do You Hurt Me Still?
9: Farewell To Love
10: Cowboy Rhythm
11: Situation Normal at Surfider
12: You’re So Great (Fred ‘Sonic’ Smith cover)
13 It’S Alright Ma (Bob Dylan cover)

Band Members:

Wendy James – Vocals, Rhythm guitars and Keys
Lenny Kaye – Lead & Rhythm Guitar
Glen Matlock – Bass
James Sclavunos – Drums
James Williamson – Lead & Rhythm Guitar, Bass Guitar
Steve Mackay -Baritone Sax

Artwork: Kym Ellery and Roze Hooij.

Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/THEWENDYJAMES/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/THEWENDYJAMES

Wendy's joined by some big names from the Punk and New Wave scene for her latest album 'The Price of The Ticket' There's undoubtably some great musicianship and Wendy's voice has a very seductive quality but I felt there were two many mellow tracks and I'd love to here a few more upbeat songs like 'Bad Intentions and a Bit of Cruelty' which was the highlight track of the album for me.

About Louise Swift

I first went to a gig in 1981, Gillan at Leeds University. I've been a regular gig goer ever since. I haven't kept count of how many gigs I've been to over the intervening years, but it's a lot! My favourite bands are AC/DC then, in no particular order, Anti-Nowhere League, Slaughter and the Dogs, Towers of London and Dirt Box Disco. I tend to like Glam/Punk and rude offensive lyrics, not sure what that says about me but as Animal would say 'So What!' The question was recently put to me - did I write for any online publications? My reply - No, but I'd like to! Planetmosh was suggested and I found myself offering to review Aces High Festival. Easy peasy I thought! Well not quite, if a jobs worth doing it's worth doing well! I had sixteen bands to research. I found I actually enjoyed that and it kept me too busy to be making lunatic comments on Facebook! ;) Then I felt a bit inadequately qualified. I mean, who am I to comment on others, when my musical expertise extends to being able to play a mean Greensleeves on the recorder and a passable Annie's song on the flute! Haven't picked up either instrument for years! What I do have, however, is over 30 years of experience as a gig goer, so I can comment on what I like and what I don't! It's only my opinion and, if I don't like a band it doesn't mean they are bad, just not to my own liking. I admire anyone who has the guts to get up on that stage and have a go!
%d bloggers like this: