The Reds® have to be considered one of the most cruelly overlooked bands in American rock. After a strong debut LP and EP on A&M, follow-up albums recorded and produced independently by the band, then licensed to Canada's Stony Plain label, never reached the audience they deserved, especially the superb Fatal Slide.
Now The Reds® have signed to Sire, but are only allowed a five-cut mini-LP in which to display their wares, and that is just not enough for a band of this caliber. Obvious influences here are The Doors and Iggy Pop, while "Beat Away" recalls the brooding power of Joy Division. Rick Shaffer's resonant guitar compliments his booming vocals, while Bruce Cohen's keyboards are boosted up in the mix by British producer, Mike Thorne.
Perhaps The Reds®' real problem is a name guaranteed to attract hostility in these right wing days, but they should be given more chances to shake some action.
∎ Kerry Doole