This is the final album from The Predators (they did come back together in 2011 for a modern release). It was self released and only available on Cassette as far as I can tell. By this album all that was left from the original band was drummer Francis Johnson and of course lead vocalist Kevin Smith. This album drifts away from their new wave pop sound to pretty strait up AOR pop album. At the urging of Kevin Smith’s daughter the band came back together in Sept. 2008 and had a private night of playing their oldies. Subsequently a version of the band did come back together to record a new album which was independently released in 2011. I look forward to giving it a listen but today I’m going to give this album another listen. If you want to read a definitive interview with the band head over to https://downthelinezine.com/archives/the-predators/
Tracklist 1 – Your World – 3:57 2 – No Connection – 3:03 3 – Fallen Angel – 4:07 4 – Nothing At All – 3:05 5 – Built On Sand – 6:27 6 – Love You To Death – 3:23 7 – Dead On Arrival – 3:56 8 – Lies (The Human Jungle) – 5:05 9 – Don’t Laugh At Me Now – 4:08 10 – Rescue Me – 4:17
Credits Bass, Acoustic Guitar, Backing Vocals, Producer – Andy Rayner Drums, Percussion – Francis Johnson Engineer – Lol Cooper Guitar – Paul Truswell Lead Vocals, Percussion – Kevin Smith
Throughout the 80’s The Predators released three albums of authentic, frantic and believable new wave/pop punk rock geared directly at the lost but from a distinctly Christian worldview. Two of the albums will make this list, including this, the debut from 1982. I did not have a chance to hear them for several years after this released because of the limited distribution in the US and even more limited Christian Bookstores willing to carry the album. Though not as strong as the follow up, Social Decay, this release does have more energy and a distinctive garage appeal. Borrowing liberally from the post punk and new wave of England at the time, the band forged a trail few would follow. Not only high energy and driving rhythms, but a social awareness of topics that ranged from racism to personal vanity to emotional and mental struggles. The album kicks off with “Sunday Boy,” a fun punk rocker dealing with maintaining faith amidst the insanity that surrounds us in the culture. It also serves as a stark warning to the lost. “You Better Run” is more reminiscent of the pop side of Undercover’s first two albums. In fact, the lead vocals are eerily similar to Bill Walden. Again, the theme that runs throughout the album of warning of a short life and need for Christ, is present here. “Don’t Burn That Cross” deal openly and obviously with racism. It is couched in a world music rhythm similar to The Police. It is a tough and unflinching song, especially for the time it was released. “Maybe Tomorrow” remains a favorite some 40 years later. It is the most commercially accessible song on the album and Christian radio most likely would have embraced it in some areas if it was available.
Contributor David Lowman – https://legacyccmsgreatestalbums.wordpress.com/
Tracklist 1 – Sunday Boy – 2:42 2 – Man Of The War – 3:12 3 – Don’t Burn That Cross – 4:43 4 – Don’t Mess Around – 3:41 5 – Maybe Tomorrow – 3:50 6 – Never Said A Word – 2:50 7 – Plastic Surgeon – 3:11 8 – Emotional Upset – 4:17 9 – Where You’re Going – 4:42 10 – You Better Run – 2:52 11 – Drift Away – 6:06
Credits Bass, Vocals – Chris Thompson Drums – Francis Johnson Guitar – Kelvin Allwood Keyboards – Christopher Norton Lacquer Cut By – BilBo Plated By – PAG Producer – John Pantry Vocals – Kevin Smith
I have no idea how I ever got copies of the three albums from The Predators back in the early 80’s. I don’t even know how the were distributed here in the US. I don’t even remember buying them. All I know is that I love all three and this, Social Decay, is just fabulous. When the dictionary defines “new wave” they should have a picture The Predators. Heavy keyboard dominated dance music with guitar stylings taken straight from The Knack and vocals at times sounding eerily like Bill Walden of early Undercover fame. In fact, the first Undercover album may be a decent comparison, though much more musical and stronger songwriting.But it is not a stretch to hear comparisons to Weber and the Buzztones, Quickflight, Elvis Cotello and even Ishmael United. There is a great combination of straight ahead evangelical lyrics and thoughtful and vague pop themes, but all with a Biblical worldview. “Man in My Room” has the feeling of a stalker story until you realize the song is about the Holy Spirit. “Stand Up and Be Counted” is a Christian anthem and “Nasty Video” addresses the problem of modern cinema and its impact. Their catalog is a tough find but worth the effort for those with an affection for early 80’s new wave pop.
Contributor David Lowman – https://ccms500bestalbums.wordpress.com/
Tracklist 1 – Jack – 3:10 2 – Free World – 3:09 3 – Man In My Room – 4:07 4 – Stand Up And Be Counted – 3:45 5 – Lost At Sea – 3:48 6 – 2 Out Of 7 – 3:49 7 – One More Time – 3:12 8 – Wipe The Tears – 4:16 9 – Nasty Video – 3:02 10 – Never Say Die – 3:26
Credits Bass, Vocals – Andy Rayner Drums, Percussion – Francis Johnson Engineer – Mick Robson Guitar – Kelvin Allwood Keyboards, Vocals – Brian Westhead Producer – John Pantry Vocals – Kevin Smith