George Starostin's Reviews



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Paul Murphy <> (28.05.2001)

Dear George,

With you being a self proclaimed music critic and after reading your review on albums by The Sweet, I think you should do a bit more research before getting down to your business.For instance,The review you gave on their first album The early years,The Sweet boys did not play on any of these tracks at all,In fact the first song Andy Steve and Mick played on was 'Wig Wam Bam',Although Brian did sign on them, Now if you listen to the flip sides of these terrible Chinn Chapman, songs,i.e. 'Co Co', 'Funny Funny', 'Little Willy',etc you would find the real sound of sweet trying to break through, Even from an early stage,And the only way they could achieve this was by being puppets to this pair of talentless assholes. Now we move on, Sweet Fanny Adams,This album is fast with catchy tunes From Scott,Tucker,Priest and Connolly,With songs also from Chinn and Chapman, Trying to write songs like sweet were writing,And although there was no singles from this album, The amount of covers by other bands of the songs on S.F.A.Is just endless,So what more can I say on this one.Now I'll skip to Give Us A Wink.May I suggest you listen to this album again because you only give it one star and this I just cannot believe. With songs like 'White Mice','Keep it in','And Action', Not to mention 'Yesterdays Rain', or 'Cockroach',This has got to be one of the best albums rock in the last 25 years.And just to add in the Guinness book of records of the best 3000 bands of all time,Sweet are at no.127 Now that cannot be bad.

David J Herbert <> (27.03.2002)

To Whomever you are! Do you not have a shred of talent or intelligence. Your reviews are not only childish and immature but they are nothing more than over written rubbish.

May I suggest you get an education in journalism before you attempt to write again.

Also, consider knowing your subject first before you decide to critique them!

hans-marijke <> (27.03.2002)

The comments you are giving on Sweet records are so strange that it is increedible to read them. Who learned you to listen to music, my gosh, you are a bitter person. sWEET FANNY ADAMS - OFF THE RECORD and LEVEL HEADED are propably better albums than Black Sabbath or Led zeppelin evere released. Can you name another band that changed withthe years as they did? Yeah QUEN! but they stole the sound from Sweet - listen to the double guitar licks on early Sweet stuff.

Boy it's great that you ahvae a web-site , but please listen to records as they where released in a certain time! Learn to listn to music, Maybe learning to play an istrument will help judging what's good or what's bad.

Nils Hoppe <> (27.03.2002)

You should do other things then to write such terrible rewies about Lps like Sweet Fanny Adams and Give us a Wink. These Lps are real Rock-History and many of the Rock-Stars of the 80th and 90th mentioned these records as a big influence for her own music. Anyway - hope you can do other things better.

Jim Knight <> (27.03.2002)

hello, just read your reviews on sweet, may I suggest you listen to these cds again, especially, SFA and DB and GUAW, excellent albums that have stood the test of time, looking forward to your reply

<> (29.04.2002)


wimp-rock is more like it

see Raspberries, Bread etc.

<> (20.05.2002)

Hello George!

It says 'any short comments', but I don't think this is going to be short, I'm afraid, so if you're at all prone to nodding off......and this will be very subjective, but hey so are your reviews! But seriously, I hope you can include at least some of it on your site (if you have room!) just in the interest of fairness....

I did find your reviews quite funny and you do make some valid points, however on the whole I did feel they were a little cynical and harsh. Okay, so maybe very few of the Sweet's songs were particularly meaningful - and some of the lyrics ARE excruciatingly bad (I actually think that they were often worse when written by the band members than by Chinn and Chapman - at least then they were fairly innocuous. Okay, so some of the more risque lyrics do fit well with the music, but some really make me cringe). But does a song really have to contain the angst of say, Radiohead, or the ambiguity of the Beatles for it to be worthy, for it to have 'artistic value' (whatever that actually means)?

I was first drawn to the Sweet for songs like 'Blockbuster' , 'Ballroom Blitz' and 'Wig Wam Bam' -okay, so I like naff songs, but at least they're good fun. I suppose the Sweet will only ever be remembered for songs like this though, and that's a real shame, because, as good as those songs were, I think they were capable of so much more. Really, I was struck by this when I listened to Sweet Fanny Adams - I liked virtually all the songs straight away - I normally need a few listens before I decide.

I loved the frenetic pace of 'Set Me Free', and 'Heartbreak Today' is a fantastic song (despite the opening lyrics - yuck!) - I think it manages to combine a catchy (but not annoyingly catchy) chorus with a sort of melancholia - it's the kind of music you could quite happily dance to, and yet it is 'heartbreaking' (sorry!) at the same time. And then there is 'No You Don't' - this was my favourite. I agree that Chinn and Chapman did write some pretty dire stuff, but this is superb. It is a very big, dramatic (O.T.T.? Nah, don't be so cynical!!!) kind of song, with echoey drums and vocals. Really - you go and listen to the desperation in that voice - '"You think you've got my life in your hands, but I'm a man, I've got my own plans, I'm a man". Fantastic. Really, it sends shivers down my spine.

I loved 'Restless' and 'Sweet F.A.' too - although not sure about the lyrics - especially in the verses - of the latter. 'AC/DC', 'Peppermint Twist', and 'Rebel Rouser' are all quite poppy and lighthearted - a bit annoying at first perhaps, but once you get used to them, you won't be able to stop singing them......

I didn't particularly like 'In To The Night' though - not a bad song as such, but I certainly wouldn't wet my pants over it, either. Btw, I do believe it was actually Andy Scott singing lead on this song, and not Brian Connolly, as you say. And it is bassist Steve Priest singing on 'No You Don't' and 'Restless' in case you were wondering (something to do with Connolly having a bad throat when they were recording the album, I think). - Oh and it was also Priest, not Scott, who sang the majority of lead vocals on the post - Brian Connolly albums.

I'm not a musician, so I really can't tell if they were proficient in their playing - but they sound pretty good to me. You say that the music - esp. on 'SFA' is full of special effects and was 'being specially prepared for stage treatment'. Like I say, I don't know much about these kind of things, but I imagine a lot of the effects would be extremely difficult to recreate live, no? Whatever, they are very good fun to listen to, and I think I have yet to hear a Sweet song where I honestly thought there was too much going on - i.e. where they were 'showing off' (maybe a couple of Andy's guitar solos were over - long, and yes I think 'Man With The Golden Arm' although technically very good, is only really for drum enthusiasts - the rest of us would fall asleep....)

I think one of the main strengths of the Sweet, which you have neglected in your reviews, is the quality of the vocal harmonies. No matter how many changes in musical style they had throughout their career, this is the one constant. Lead singer Connolly had a lovely, clear voice and was ably backed by Scott's (and Tucker's?) falsettos, and Priest has a really powerful, resonating type of voice - I love the combination of Connolly and Priest singing together. Okay, so maybe some of the vocal arrangements could be considered corny, but some are simply stunning, and even if you don't like them, you can't deny that they were technically brilliant, surely?

You describe the song 'You're Not Wrong For Loving Me' as pap. Yes, I thought this too at first - I thought it was overly soppy. But it grew on me - not because of it's naffness (sometimes the more naff a song is, the more I like it!), merely because of those voices. You go and listen to your Strung Up cd again, if you still have it, and I defy you not to be moved by the vocal performances - bearing in mind that they were singing live, too. Quite magical. Well, I would say to anyone thinking of buying a Sweet album, do venture further than the greatest hits compilations (of which there are an alarming number of fake ones available in the shops - if you buy one and think 'this sounds shit' , then it probably isn't actually them - better to pay a bit more and get a real cd), at least as far as SFA, anyway. It IS, in my opinion much better than the glam rock hits, but still doesn't take itself too seriously. They main thing is, the songs are enjoyable to listen to. You describe some of them as being 'guilty pleasures' - well all I know is that they make me happy. Do I have to feel guilty for feeling happy?

<> (01.03.2003)

I dont know if any body here really listens to sweet. I first got into sweet back when fox on the run and all that stuff was on the radio and watched the bbc shows of the earlier stuff like blockbuster and was turned on by how many girls dugs these guys so I learned the guitar and then really listened to sweet this drummer is good listen to the time changes in sweet fa way ahead of there time I really liked Brian Connelly and wish I had only had half his talent same said for the rest of the band hey hats off


<> (22.07.2002)

Blame it on the Brits, man. All these singles tanked in the U.K., which led them to hook up w Chinnichap for "Funny Funny" which took off (in the U.K., anyway....) I've never actually heard anything Sweet did before "Little Willy," I just read about them alot : ).


<> (22.07.2002)

"Alexander Graham Bell" wasn't self penned, silly. And the title of the song is "Wig Wam Bam." and it is damn catchy, ain't it? Alot better than, say, "Blockbuster," or God knows, "The Six Teens."


MIKAEL NORDSTRÖM <> (26.03.2002)


it was not a pleseant experience to read your rewiew of sweet fanny adams. this album is one of the finest records ever produced in the seventies. yes it is glam, but listen to the performance and the production, it is way before it's time. but to dig sweet was never a hip thing. it is just sad that you don't give credit to them for being one of the most influential bands on the glam, slease, punk ,metal scene of the 80's, 90's and even today.


MIKAEL NORDSTRÖM <> (26.03.2002)

your rewiew on this album is just to much. i know you can't be a musician. for your information 'the man with the golden arm' is an old jazzclassic and also an old movie. [Thanks for the info, I really appreciate that - G.S.] it is not a parody. you are a parody!!!!


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MIKAEL NORDSTRÖM <> (26.03.2002)

yes, why do you rewiew music that you don't have any respect for???? [Hell if I know - G.S.]


MIKAEL NORDSTRÖM <> (27.03.2002)


<> (22.07.2002)

I think that "Mother Earth" was released as a single, in the U.S., no less. And according to Polydor's 1993 Sweet Best of, it actually charted. I don't know if this information interests you or not, but, ya know...

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