Ian Lloyd

Band members                             Related acts

  line up 1  (1978)

- Ian Lloyd (aka Lloyd Buonconciglio) -- vocals, keyboards


  backing musicians (1976)

- Kenneth Bichel -- clavinet

- Gregg Diamond -- drums, percussion, keyboards

- James Gregory - bass

- Mick Jones -- guitar

- Steve Love -- guitar

- Jimmy Maelen -- percussion

- Ian McDonald -- sax


  backing musicians (1979)

- Michael Becker -- sax

- Steve Buslowe -- bass

- Jimmy Crespo -- rhythm guitar

- Dennis Elliott -- drums

- Bruce Fairbairn --  bass, backing vocals

- Larry Fast -- synthesizers

- Lou Gramm -- backing vocals

- Mick Jones -- lead guitar

- Jimmy Maelen -- percussion

- Lindsay Mitchell -- rhythm guitar

- Rick Ocasek -- rhythm guitar, backing vocals

- Benjamin Orr (RIP) -- bass, backing vocals

- David SInclair -- lead guitar

- Jim Valance -- drums, keyboards





- Social Hero (Ian Lloyd)

- Stories (Ian Lloyd)





Genre: rock

Rating: 2 stars **

Title:  Ian Lloyd

Company: Polydor

Catalog:  PD 1 6066

Country/State: Seattle, Washington

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: includes original custom inner sleeve

Available: 2

Catalog ID: 3360

Price: $10.00


Co-produced by Ian Lloyd and drummer Gregg Diamond, 1976's "Ian Lloyd" saw the former Stories front man/singer stepping out into a true solo career.  (For hardcore fans who would disagree, I would argue 1973's "Ian Lloyd and Stores "Traveling Undergound" was not a solo effort.)   Given Lloyd was always impressive in Stories, and I had high hopes for this album.   Unfortunately, on this collection Lloyd seemed ill-focused, uncomfortable, and largely un-inspired.  His voice sounded raw and ragged and, in spite of support from a good part of Foreigner, there simply wasn't a killer song a-la 'Mammy Blue' or 'Brother Louie' to be found on the album.  Instead Lloyd seemed to be trying to appeal to a broad spectrum of listeners ranging from top-40 fans ('Ooh What I'd Doo (For Your Love)') to Foreigner-styled AOR ('I'll Give You Love').   The results merely left you wondering who this guy was.  This is one of those rare album's where I'm at a loss to pick a favorite tune.  I can't say I loved any of them.  If pushed in a corner, I guess I'd go with the faux Foreigner rocker 'I'll Give You Love'.  The good news was that Lloyd''s follow-on "Goose Bumps" was far better. 


"Ian Lloyd" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Oh Let Me In   (Gregg Diamond - Mike Millius) - 2:55   rating: *** stars

The rocker 'Oh Let Me In' started the album with one of those songs that sounded like it had been snapped together from a half dozen other mid-'70s tunes.  Little bit of T-Rex; touch of Mott the Hoople, etc.  Other than Ina McDonald's irritating sax, it wasn't a bad song.  Just not very memorable.  The song was released as a promo single in the US and a stock release in Holland:

  US release:

- 1976's 'Oh Let Me In' b/w 'Oh Let Me In' (Polydor catalog PD-14361)

  Dutch release:

- 1976's 'Oh Let Me In' b/w 'Sensations' (Polydor catalog 2066 072)

2.) Never Been a Man  (Ian Lloyd - Gregg Diamond) - 3:30   rating: *** stars

'The mid-tempo rocker 'Never Been a Man' sported a pretty melody, but gets docked a star for Lloyd's ragged vocals.  Polydor tapped the song as a single in the US and Germany:

- 1976's 'Never Been a Man' b/w 'Silver Chains' (Polydor catalog number PD-14319)

3.) One More Chance (Sha La La)  (Mick Jones) - 3:01   rating: *** stars

Written by Foreigner's Mick Jones, who also provided guitar, 'One More Chance (Sha La La)' could have been an excellent tune had the band not opted to slap a country flavor on the results.  As is, the results have always reminded me of a bad Raspberries song.

4.) Let Me Down Easy   (Jimmy Mack) - 4:00   rating: * star

I normally try to find at least something nice to say about a song.  I'm at a complete loss with respect to 'Let Me Down Easy'.   Shame since Jimmy Mack songs are usually pretty decent, but this cover was simply  bland, overly sappy, and thoroughly hideous.   Drunk lounge act material comes to mind.

5.) Sensations   (Ian Lloyd - Gregg Diamond) - 3:02   rating: * star

Momentarily it seemed 'Sensations' was going to end side one with a great song.  And then the disco guitars kicked in and the song disappeared into also ran territory.  At least it was short.



(side 2)

1.) Silver Chains  (Ian Lloyd - Gregg Diamond) - 4:44   rating: *** stars



Given Lloyd called Seattle, Washington him, 'Silver Chains' has always amused me given it had such an English sound.  Steve Love provided the slinky slide guitar.  The song was tapped as a single in New Zealand:


- 1976's 'Silver Chains' b/w 'Never Been a Man' (Polydor catalog number 2066 675)




2.) Brotherly Luv  Gregg Diamond) - 3:07   rating: *** stars

I've wracked my brains trying to figure out where I've heard the main guitar riff ...

3.) Ooh What I'd Doo (For Your Love) - 3:07   rating: ** stars

Sappy, barely-in-tune pop tune that could have been a Rupert Holmes stab at top-40 success.  

4.) I'll Give You Love   (Ian Lloyd) - 4:07   rating: *** stars

Another track featuring support from Mick Jones and Ian McDonald, it shouldn't have come as surprise to hear the rocker  'I'll Give You Love' reflected more than a little Foreigner influence.  For a guy who did a lot of background vocals for that band you would have thought his lead vocals would have been stronger ...

5.) Lonely Dancer   (Ian Lloyd) - 4:11   rating: *** stars

The best thing on 'Lonely Dancer' came in the form if James Gregory's bass line.   The rest of the song was barely irritating.



Genre: rock

Rating: 4 stars ****

Title:  Goose Bumps

Company: Scotti Brothers

Catalog:  SB 7104

Country/State: Seattle, Washington

Grade (cover/record): VG+/VG+

Comments: includes original custom inner sleeve

Available: 2

Catalog ID: 2127

Price: $10.00

Ian Lloyd's third solo was an interesting display of his musical gifts and the myriad of musical influences he enjoyed.  Produced by Bruce Fairbairn, "Goose Bumps" found Lloyd working with a variety of groups including most of The Cars ('Slipping Away') and several members of Foreigner ('Love Stealer').  While those two outfits would seem to be at different ends of the musical spectrum, under Fairbairn and Lloyd's direction their influences melded into a highly commercial blend of AOR and pop moves that showcased Lloyd's outstanding rock voice - check out his rollicking delivery on 'Love Stealer'.  In fact, the only real missteps on the album were a pair of new wave-ish covers - The Bee Gee's 'Holiday' and The Zombies ' Time of the Season '   The biggest surprise was that for a guy known as a writer the album only included one original composition.  It so happened 'She Broke Your Heart' happened to be the best song on the album, but you had to wonder why Lloyd opted for so many covers.  


"Goose Bumps" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) She Broke Your Heart   (Ian Lloyd) - 3:02  rating: **** stars

It was the only Lloyd original on the album, but the opener 'She Broke Your Heart' may have been worth the price of admission by itself.  A melodic rocker with a hook that just would not let go of your ears, this was the kind of tune that bands like Boston and Foreigner used to rule mid-'70s airwaves.  The only mystery was how radio managed to miss this one.  (The Foreigner comparison was apt given Lou Gramm and Mick Jones played on the song.)    The tune was tapped as a promo single, but seemingly never saw a general release:


- 1978's 'She Broke Your Heart' (stereo) b/w 'She Broke Your Heart' (mono) (Scotti Brothers catalog number SB 501)   




2.) Love Stealer   (Phil Wainman - Richard Myhill) - 3:33  rating: **** stars

Kicked along by Mick Jones' crunching lead guitar, 'Love Stealer' had some hysterical  lyrics.  Interestingly this was a song where the basic tune was actually better than the chorus - not that did anything to diminish the song's overall commercial appeal.  Scotti Brothers tapped it as a promo single:

- 1978's 'Love Stealer' (stereo) b/w 'Love Stealer' (mono) (Scott Brothers SB 515) 

3.) First Heartbreak   (Russ Ballard) - 2:37  rating: **** stars

Songwriter Ballad had a knack for penning super commercial material and that was the case with 'First Heartbreak'.  Possibly the most top 40-ish song on the album, this one almost bordered on power pop, sounding like something you might have heard from an English group like Slade, or The Sweet.  My only complaint was this one faded out too soon.   Shame it wasn't tapped as a single.   

4.) Slip Away   (Ric Ocasek) - 3:34  rating: **** stars

There aren't a lot of artists who'd be willing to borrow from bands as diverse as The Cars and Foreigner on the same album  - Lloyd didn't have that problem turning this Ric Ocasek tune into his own should've been a massive hit performance.   The Cars'-influences were certainly evident (not hurt by the fact Ben Orr and Ocasek played on the tune), but Lloyd managed to add a beguiling top-40 edge to the results.   The song was released as a single:

-- 1978's 'Slip Away' b/w 'Easy Money' (Scott Brotehrs catalog number SB 505) # 51 pop  

5.) Holiday   (Barry Gibb - Robin Gubb) - 2:13   rating: ** stars

I don't have anything against the Gibb Brothers, but Lloyd's stark cover of 'Holiday' was the album's first misstep.  The arrangement's new wave-ish edge (just Bruce Vallance on synthesizers, bass, and drums), just didn't do much for me.

6.) Open Soul Surgery   (Jim Vallance) - 3:10   rating: *** stars

Side one ended with a rather anonymous slice of AOR.  'Open Heart Surgery' wasn't half bad, but sounded kind of like an album throwaway track that borrowed a bit too heavily from the Foreigner hit song formula.   


(side 2)
1.) Goosebumps   (Brian Robertson - Terry Britten) - 2:46
  rating: **** stars

Another AOR tune, but this one had that certain ingredient that may it stand about the norm - might be the funny lyrics, the song's slight ominous feel, or Lindsay Mitchell's nice lead guitar moves.  One of my favorites on the set. 

2.) Easy Money   (Corky Laing - Ian Hunter) - 2:29   rating: *** stars

Ian Hunter usually writes interesting material, but 'Easy Money' sounded kind of rote and by-the-book.  Professional, but pedestrian with Lloyd sounding vaguely English on the song.  Ex-Aerosmith member Jimmy Crespo's lead solo sounded like dozens of other mid-'70s pieces.

3.) Time of the Season   (Rod Argent) - 3:26    rating: ** stars

I've always wondered why anyone would want to cover a classic tune in the first place, but to give it a sped-up new wave-ish arrangement like this was ...  well a waste of times and grooves.  The album's biggest mis-step. 

4.) New City Lights   (Kevin Borcib) - 2:55  rating: **** stars

With a breezy melody and a catchy title hook, 'New City Lights' was another tune that would have made a strong single.  I didn't even mnd the extended Michael Becker sax solo.  

5.) I'm Ready   (Jim Vallance - Brian Adams) - 3:24   rating: *** stars

Um, this sounded like a mash-up between Brian Adams and Foreigner ...  Calculated AOR tune, but a good calculated AOR tune.   Oh, Brian Adams co-wrote it.   Well, if you were an Adams or Foreigner fan this one was going to be right up your alley.  

6.) Love Is a Ship   (Paul DaVinci) - 3:28  rating: **** stars

Hearing rockers adopt a reggae beat normally isn't a good thing, but the breezy 'Love Is a Ship' wasn't bad.   Lloyd's gritty voice was well suited for the song and he handled the genre with more grace than you would have expected.  The melody was a great mix-drinks-on-the-deck tune.