Billy Joel - Glass Houses (Numbered Hybrid SACD)

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SKU:
CMFSA2091
Billy Joel - Glass Houses (Numbered Hybrid SACD)

Billy Joel - Glass Houses (Numbered Hybrid SACD)

Price $29.99
Availability:
Adding to cart… The item has been added
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Description

Billy Joel Toughens Up and Increases the Animosity, Sarcasm, Anger, and Confidence on Glass Houses: 1980 Smash Includes "You May Be Right" and "It's Still Rock and Roll to Me"

Accessible and Angry: Phil Ramone’s Production Bristles with Boldness, Raucousness, and Directness on Mobile Fidelity's Hybrid SACD

Elvis Costello long had a reputation for being the “angry young man.” With apologies to the former Declan McManus, he had nothing on Billy Joel’s Glass Houses. Fed up with inexcusable critical backlash and believing he’d still not been regarded as a serious artist, Joel ratcheted up the angst on the 1980 set that, oh, by the way, happened to sell another seven-million-plus copies and top the Billboard charts. Revenge is sweet.

Mastered from the original master tapes, Mobile Fidelity's hybrid SACD hones in on producer Phil Ramone’s loose, straightforward production. It opens up the previously veiled soundstages, spotlights the clean yet raucous arrangements, and decongests the imaging so that all of the notes come to the fore. Joel’s urgency and temperament have never sounded so vibrant. 

In addition to firing shots at detractors, Joel further solidifies his reputation as a pop maestro on the hit “Don’t Ask Me Why” and mellow classic “C’etait Toi (You Were the One),” each replete with sparkling structures and shimmering melodies. Throughout, he dials down the grand gestures, focusing more on an attitude and directness. At the time, Joel was conscious of the punk movement, and seems inspired to follow that genre’s preference for simplicity, frankness, and irritability. The album’s legendary artwork—the singer preparing to toss a brick through the windows of his house—is a metaphor for Joel shattering his image as a cocktail-lounge pop crooner. 

Such changes are evident in the now-signature “You May Be Right,” a hard-rocking and scathing rebuttal to a romantic partner on which Joel embraces the identity of a tough-skinned madman that won’t stop at anything. He inhabits the role with convincing theatrics, his voice mixing pushiness, smugness, self-evident humor, and cool that fits the resistive tone of the record’s songs. Glass Houses is Joel’s megaphone for stubborn independence, dogged assertiveness, and blustery confidence. 

It’s also an announcement of artistic intent, a statement that’s simultaneously catchy and barbed, well-crafted and rowdy. And it succeeds on all levels, bringing to commercial pop-rock a brashness and grit often absent from fare that sticks in your head for days. Joel would never be seen the same way again. 

1. You May Be Right
2. Sometimes a Fantasy
3. Don’t Ask Me Why
4. It’s Still Rock and Roll to Me
5. All for Lenya
6. I Don’t Want to Be Alone
7. Sleeping With the Television On
8. C’etait Toi (You Were the One)
9. Close to the Borderline
10. Through the Long Night
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