Foreigner – Can’t Slow Down

Foreigner - Can't Slow Down

Released on September 29, 2009
Chart Position #29

Track List:
01. Can’t Slow Down
02. In Pieces
03. When It Comes To Love
04. Living In A Dream
05. I Can’t Give Up
06. Ready
07. Give Me A Sign
08. I’ll Be Home Tonight
09. Too Late
10. Lonely
11. As Long As I Live
12. Angel Tonight
13. Fool For You Anyway
Bonus Hits Remixed CD:
01. Feels Like The First Time
02. Cold As Ice
03. Hot Blooded
04. Blue Morning Blue Day
05. Double Vision
06. Dirty White Boy
07. Head Games
08. Juke Box Hero
09. Urgent
10. I Want To Know What Love Is
Bonus Live DVD:
01. Double Vision
02. Head Games
03. That Was Yesterday
04. Say You Will
05. Starrider
06. Feels Like The First Time
07. Urgent
08. Juke Box Hero
09. I Want To Know What Love Is
10. Hot Blooded

Band Members:
Kelly Hansen – vocals
Mick Jones – lead guitar
Tom Gimbel – rhythm guitar, saxophone, flute
Jeff Pilson – bass
Brian Tichy – drums
Michael Bluestein – keyboards

Additional Musicians:
Jason Bonham – drums
Marti Frederiksen – guitar, keyboards, percussion and background vocals
Thomas Brenneck – guitar
Nick Movshon – bass
Homer Steinweiss – drums
Victor Axelrod – keyboards and organ
Russ Irwin – keyboards
Neal Sugarman – saxophone
Michael Leonhart – trumpet
Lola Johnson – background vocals
Cynthia Langston – background vocals
Suzie McNeil – background vocals
Jason Paige – background vocals

Produced by Mick Jones and Marti Frederiksen.
Track 13 produced by Mark Ronson.

It’s ironic that Foreigner reformed as a result of Jason Bonham urging Mick Jones to get back together and the drummer is no longer in the group. He does however appear on one track on Can’t Slow Down called “Too Late”, which also appeared on last year’s hits collection.

I really like the way that Mick Jones went about putting together the new lineup, it’s reminiscent of the way David Coverdale put together Whitesnake to tour behind the self titled album. He brought in talented, seasoned players, with great reputations and an existing fan base. Important additions to this version of Foreigner are Jeff Pilson on bass, who has played with Dokken in the past, drummer Brian Tichey who replaced Bonham and has played with Zakk Wylde and Billy Idol to name a few, and the biggest addition is vocalist Kelly Hansen who replaced Lou Gramm who many deemed irreplaceable. Hansen has sung for Hurricane, Unruly Child, and has done more tribute albums than Jani Lane.

Sure the line-up sounds great in print, but the real proof would be when they hit the studio for a full length album. The wait is over and the end result is Can’t Slow Down. I can’t begin to tell you how fantastic this album is from beginning to end. There aren’t any four on the floor rockers on here, instead the band concentrated on writing mid-tempo AOR tracks and killer ballads. While I’m not a huge ballads guy these songs are so well crafted that they’ll hook you in and that’s all she wrote. Kelley Hansen proves to be Foreigner‘s MVP as he brings back shades of Gramm, but with an edgier vocal on the new material.

It’s hard to pick just a few standouts on Can’t Slow Down because this is a solid, well executed effort from top to bottom. I’d have to say the best are “Can’t Slow Down,” a great opener that sets up the rest of the album nicely and proves to be a great way to introduce Hansen to those that hadn’t heard him before, “In Pieces” with its great melody and chorus, the fantastic and very memorable “I’ll Be Home Tonight” (make sure to refuel your Zippo for this one if it makes the set list), “Too Late”, the hardest hitting track on this album due to Jason Bonham‘s drumming and the R&B influenced “Fool For You Anyway,” which you’d swear is a Smokey Robinson cover…but it’s not.

The exclusive Wal-Mart release of Can’t Slow Down also includes a bonus live DVD and greatest hits collection, giving Foreigner fans lots of bang for their buck. – –

Reviewed by Ruben Mosqueda for Sleaze Roxx, October 2009.

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