Oddly though, given his major involvement in the aforementioned single, Peter Cetera takes a back seat for most of this album, writing just one of the tracks "Baby what a big surprise", which is also the only song he provides the lead vocal for. The song was though another huge hit single for the band, the smooth romantic nature of the song appealing to the same market which the band had found for "If you leave me now". Things kick off with Terry Kath's "Mississippi delta city blues", a song which had first been demoed around , a version appearing as a bonus track on the CD release of "Chicago V".
The principle difference here is the vocal and brass arrangement, but the song remains a workout in pop funk; nice horns though. The song is pure pop, but a pleasant listen nonetheless. Although the sleeve notes state that important compositional contributions were made by all the guys to every track , the album is notable for the way each credited composer takes control over their own track.
On "Till the end of time" for example, James Pankow sings lead vocal and plays piano offering a tongue in cheek apology to Robert Lamm along the way. Lamm take on lead vocal duties for his song "Policeman", working with Pankow on the brass arrangement for the song a role usually reserved for Pankow alone.
The song offers an unusual view of the life of a policeman, painting a picture of someone with genuine feelings caught up in a world of tragedy, misfortune and solitude.
Robert Lamm sings lead vocal, but once again the composer Seraphine helps with the brass arrangement. The song is one of the more interesting on the album, the varied instrumental arrangement offering something a little more stimulating. Chaka Khan sings backing vocals on the track, coming to the fore on the soulful ending.
The track was a minor hit single in the USA. Robert Lamm's only other composition is "Vote for me", a cynical look at a political manifesto for someone who will do anything to buy your vote. The song features choral vocals by "The voices of inspiration of Compton" and some fine keyboard playing by Lamm. It's very much a fun song, but its toe-tapping nature make it irresistible.
Terry Kath co- writes "Takin' it on uptown" with a Fred Kagan, leading to a rather strange publishing credit for this one track. The song is not particularity Chicago like, or for that matter all that good. Lee Loughnane's sole track is "This time" where he once again offers a rare vocal and inevitably helps Pankow with the brass arrangement.
The track includes some good lead guitar to complement the brass, and what probably constitutes the longest instrumental section on the album. The album closes with Danny Seraphine's two part "Little one", a piece he co-wrote with the aforementioned David "Hawk" Wolinski. The theme may be a bit drippy dedicated to Seraphine's own kids , and the orchestral arrangement a bit MOR, but the brass and wind arrangement combined with a soulful vocal set the song apart.
It is not classic Chicago in terms of the band's early work by any means, but there is a least an attempt here to move beyond the pop rock which now dominates the band's output. In all then, a pleasantly inoffensive set which sees tracks being developed slightly more than on "Chicago X". Add Comment.
Baby, What a Big Surprise 2. Little One 4. Mississippi Delta City Blues 5. Policeman 6. Prelude little One 7. Take Me Back to Chicago 8. However, things are never reduced to tuneless noise. Terry makes it all work one last time, giving it his all on the vocal and, of course, guitar.
I think a lot of us would have followed him and ceased listening to future Chicago albums had he indeed fulfilled his Cook County dream. US Billboard Hot US Billboard Adult Contemporary. US Cash Box Top . West Germany Official German Charts . Tuesday 6 August Wednesday 7 August Thursday 8 August Friday 9 August Saturday 10 August Sunday 11 August Monday 12 August Tuesday 13 August Wednesday 14 August Thursday 15 August Friday 16 August Saturday 17 August Sunday 18 August Monday 19 August Tuesday 20 August Wednesday 21 August Thursday 22 August Friday 23 August Saturday 24 August Sunday 25 August Monday 26 August Tuesday 27 August Wednesday 28 August Thursday 29 August Friday 30 August Saturday 31 August Sunday 1 September Monday 2 September Tuesday 3 September Wednesday 4 September Thursday 5 September Friday 6 September Saturday 7 September Sunday 8 September Monday 9 September Tuesday 10 September Wednesday 11 September X was ok, at least it had Once Or Twice to open the album , but to me, XI was a sign the band was going back to their original mission of being a rock band with horns even with BWABS on there.
Who knows what would have happened except for one tragic night? Nice review, D! Chicago XI will always remain one of my favorite Chicago albums. There were a handful of Chicago albums which seemed heavily focused on one or two band members. It's one of those albums where it seemed everyone in the band got their chance to shine-- which is one of the reasons I so thoroughly enjoy it.
No guys, I disagree with you, Chicago XI isn't a great album Yes, it probably work better than X but isn't so good. I always remember it as "The last album with Terry" You'll never known you're my master! I cannot stress how much I truly love this album.Takin' It on Uptown Lyrics: Walking through the fog on a cold and cloudy night / Looking through the smog that surrounds the morning light / The shades of brown. It gets me down, exactly like my.