The Firm

The Firm

by The Firm


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Anticipation was quite high when it was announced in 1984 that Paul Rodgers, the past voice of Bad Company, and Jimmy Page, Led Zeppelin's former guitarist, were creating a "supergroup" called the Firm. Page and Rodgers had first tinkered with the idea of an album after their successful collaboration on the ARMS benefit tour for Ronnie Lane in 1983. Based upon the fact that it had been over five years since Page's last band effort, and two years since Rodger's lackluster finale with the original Bad Company, pundits were more than eager to hear what new material the duo would unleash. However, when the band's self-titled debut was actually released in 1985, it received a critical drubbing and was all but ignored by the record-buying public. That's too bad, for the album is quite good and does nothing to taint the sterling reputations of either of its key players. Page and Rodgers were joined on The Firm by veteran drummer Chris Slade and Roy Harper-alum Tony Franklin. Slade's Bonham-esque sledgehammer attack on the skins, coupled with Franklin's fretless basslines, added dimension to Rodgers' smooth vocals and Page's layered guitar textures. Page's tone throughout is very reminiscent of the sound of his overdubs on Coda, as well as the sound he would subsequently employ on 1988's Outrider. Opening track "Closer" cleverly uses a subtle horn section to good effect, while "Someone to Love" represents all the good elements of the band in one number. Rodgers' "Radioactive" was actually a minor hit for the band, its quirkiness overcoming the goofiness of the lyrics. The album's best cut is "Satisfaction Guaranteed," a mid-tempo gem with a snaky and exotic Page riff and a heartfelt vocal performance by Rodgers. The only weak track on the record is the unnecessary cover of the Righteous Brothers' "You've Lost That Loving Feeling," which feels totally out of place. The album-closing "Midnight Moonlight" could have been the Firm's best song, but the underwhelming arrangement and superfluous backing vocals partially destroyed it. The fact that "Midnight Moonlight" was actually an unfinished Led Zeppelin cut entitled "Swansong," left over from the Physical Graffiti sessions, led some to believe that Page had run out of new ideas for the project. While it is true that this album isn't as uniformly excellent as Led Zeppelin's work, it is the best from this short-lived band and turned out to be Page's most consistent effort from the entire decade of the '80s.

Product Details

Release Date: 10/25/1990
Label: Atlantic
UPC: 0075678123924
catalogNumber: 81239
Rank: 1688

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Firm   Primary Artist
Jimmy Page   Guitar,Electric Guitar
Paul Rodgers   Guitar,Electric Guitar,Vocals
Don Weller   Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Sam Brown   Vocals,Background Vocals
Helen Chappelle   Vocals,Background Vocals
Tony Franklin   Synthesizer,Bass,Vocals,Background Vocals
Willie Garnett   Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Chris Slade   Percussion,Drums
Joy Yates   Vocals,Background Vocals
Shilts   Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone
Steve Dawson   Trumpet

Technical Credits

Jimmy Page   Producer,Contributor
Paul Rodgers   Producer
Stuart Epps   Engineer

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The Firm 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
How could the critics hammer this album? This is the greatest thing i've ever listened to. This is your typical 80's rock at its greatest. I found all pros on this album, but 1 con; I really didnt care for the lyrics on "Together", other than that every song on here rocks in its own way. "Radioactive" is without a doubt the best song on here, with Rodgers creating the most quirky riff i've ever heard. "Closer" and "Satisfaction Guaranteed" are probably other standouts, "Satisfaction" delivering the best vocals on this album from Rodgers. This is probably the best rock supergroup ive ever heard. Although this CD is hard to find, look for it and pick it up, cuz you will not be disappointed
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago