Their 1985 debut album, Rattlesnakes, earned Britain’s Lloyd Cole and the Commotions a reputation as a thinking man’s pop band. With a musical style borrowing heavily from American folkrock, the 24-year-old Cole included numerous literary references in his thoughtful lyrics about love and alienation. But on the band’s second album, Easy Pieces, Cole proves himself too clever for his own good. Although his songs now feature less pretentious references, his poetic devices are often strained. Lost Weekend resorts to such obscure metaphors as “a head full of attitude and ashtray heart on my sleeve, wounded knees.” Despite its melodic charms, the music is often cluttered with pompous string arrangements. Sadly, success seems to have gone to Cole’s head.

Publication: Maclean's

Publication date: 24/02/86