Record #450: Hall & Oates – Private Eyes (1981)

private eyesThe last few months, in a completely unexpected move, I have developed a fascination with soft rock duo Hall & Oates. I had been somewhat familiar with their big radio hits—”Maneater,” “Kiss On My List,” “Rich Girl,” et al—but when I actually delved into their studio albums, I was surprised to find a much richer sonic palette than their radio hits suggested.

X-Static and Voices featured all of the pop sensibilities and clever songwriting I expected from the group, but there was a healthy dose of new wave and post punk that surprised me.

So when I put on Private EyesI was ready for anything.

And while Private Eyes is no less diverse than the other two albums in my collection, it’s certainly more focused. The opening title track remains as fresh and evergreen as the day it was released. “I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do)” is a prog-tinged pop tune that evokes moments of The Alan Parsons Project.

The deep cuts are great as well. “Head Above Water” shines with glistening synths. “Tell Me What You Want” rides a heavy reggae groove. “Friday Let Me Down” easily could have been a classic rock staple if it were a single.

But most importantly, three albums into my exploration of Hall & Oates, I have yet to come across a bad track. And with a grand total of $3 spent on these albums, I’ve got to feel like I’m ripping somebody off.

One thought on “Record #450: Hall & Oates – Private Eyes (1981)

  1. Pingback: Record #461: Hall & Oates – H2O (1982) | A Year of Vinyl

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