The Roches (album)

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The Roches
Studio album by The Roches
Released 1979
Recorded Sep 1978-Nov 1978
Genre Folk
Length 39:53
Label Warner Bros.
Producer Robert Fripp
The Roches chronology
The Roches
(1979)
Nurds
(1980)
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars [1]
Robert Christgau A [2]
Rolling Stone 3.5/5 stars [3]
Rolling Stone Album Guide 5/5 stars [4]

The Roches is the 1979 eponymous debut album by The Roches, produced by Robert Fripp, who also plays guitar and Fripperies (a variation of his Frippertronics). Also playing on the album are Tony Levin, Larry Fast and Jimmy Maelen of King Crimson and Peter Gabriel fame.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "We" (Suzzy Roche, Terre Roche, Maggie Roche) – 2:35
  2. "Hammond Song" (Margaret Roche) – 5:46
  3. "Mr. Sellack" (Terre Roche) – 4:03
  4. "Damned Old Dog" (Margaret Roche) – 4:07
  5. "The Troubles" (Suzzy Roche, Terre Roche, Maggie Roche) – 3:27
  6. "The Train" (Suzzy Roche) – 3:30
  7. "The Married Men" (Margaret Roche) – 4:32
  8. "Runs in the Family" (Terre Roche) – 3:29
  9. "Quitting Time" (Margaret Roche) – 4:19
  10. "Pretty and High" (Margaret Roche) – 4:05

Reception[edit]

The album was well received. Jay Cocks in Time wrote that their music "is startling, lacerating and amusing".[5] Robert Christgau's review stated "Robert Fripp's austere production of this witty, pretty music not only abjures alien instrumentation but also plays up the quirks of the Roches' less-than-commanding voices and acoustic guitars. Thus it underscores their vulnerability and occasional desperation and counteracts their flirtations with the coy and the fey. The result is not a perfect record, but rather one whose imperfections are lovingly mitigated."[2] It was voted #11 for the year in The Village Voice Pazz & Jop Critics Poll.[6]

It has continued to be highly rated. Allmusic characterized it as a "mischievous and highly original folk blend".[1] And The Rolling Stone Album Guide gave it its classic rating calling it an "unprecedented thrill" that was "spare, loose, pointed" and equating it as the Greenwich Village version of the New York punk explosion.[4]

Personnel[edit]

Musicians:

Production:

  • "Produced in Audio Verite by Robert Fripp"
  • Engineer: Ed Sprigg
  • Assistant Engineer: Jon Smith
  • Recorded at The Hit Factory in New York during September, October and November 1978

Other credits:

  • Art direction: Peter Whorf
  • Design: Brad Kanawyer
  • Photography: Gary Heery

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Cook, Stephen. The Roches (album) at AllMusic. Retrieved 4 December 2005.
  2. ^ a b Christgau, Robert (April 30, 1979). "Christgau's Consumer Guide: The Roches Pick Hit". The Village Voice. Retrieved 30 November 2011.  Relevant portion also posted at "The Roches: The Roches > Consumer Album Guide". Robert Christgau. Retrieved 11 June 2006. 
  3. ^ "The Roches > Album Review". Rolling Stone (292). May 31, 1979. [dead link]
  4. ^ a b Soults, Franklin (2004). "The Roches". In Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian. The New Rolling Stone Album Guide. London: Fireside. pp. 694–695. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8. 
  5. ^ Cocks, Jay (May 7, 1979). "Valentines from the Danger Zone". Time. p. 64. Archived from the original on 21 January 2011. Retrieved 1 September 2011. 
  6. ^ "The 1979 Pazz & Jop Critics Poll". The Village Voice. January 28, 1980. Retrieved 1 September 2011. 

Further reading[edit]