Billy Joel - The Nylon Curtain

Limited Numbered 2LP 180 Gram Audiophile Vinyl

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The Nylon Curtain is the eighth studio album by American singer-songwriter Billy Joel, originally released in September 1982 via Columbia Records.

It tends to get lost in discussions of Billy Joel‘s most popular works, but The Nylon Curtain, is his underrated masterpiece.

By 1982, Billy Joel had established a solid reputation as a hit-maker. His previous four albums, The Stranger52nd StreetGlass Houses and Songs In The Attic, had all reached the Top 10. But he was looking to make a more mature artistic statement with his music, one that looked at the Baby Boomers as they settled into adulthood in the Reagan years.

Allentown” kicks things off proper, with the struggling industrial Pennsylvania city used as a microcosm for the decline of post-World War II optimism. “Pressure” is about how the Boomers’ refusal to grow up would soon come back to haunt them as they approached middle age and had to face tough situations.

The spectre of the Vietnam War was raised in The Nylon Curtain‘s centerpiece, “Goodnight Saigon”. The song took the listener from basic training through the DMZ  and the horrors of war, with the moving chorus singing the promise that they “would all go down together.” Despite the adult themes, all three songs, which comprise most of the first side, were hit singles.

But it’s the deeper tracks that make The Nylon Curtain stand out among Joel’s albums. Casual fans who mainly knew Joel as a balladeer were shocked by the f-bomb in the powerful “Laura”, which takes the erotic torment from Glass Houses‘ “All For Leyna” one step further. “She’s Right On Time” and “Surprises” feature Joel’s trademark innovative chord progressions and lovely melodies.

Musically, the album shows Joel paying tribute to late-period Beatles. His vocal phrasing on “Laura” alternates between John Lennon in the verse and Paul McCartney in the chorus and bridge. Meanwhile, the bluesy piano on “A Room Of Our Own” gives a nod to Abbey Road and the cello in “Scandinavian Skies” echoes “I Am The Walrus”.

Joel’s band, anchored by the criminally underrated drummer Liberty DeVitto, navigated the stylistic diversion with aplomb. Legendary producer Phil Ramone, who had worked with Joel on every album since The Stranger, puts everything in their proper place and gives it his trademark radio-friendly sheen.

When he appeared on Alec Baldwin‘s Here’s The Thing podcast in 2012, Joel said The Nylon Curtain was his favourite of his albums. We couldn’t agree more.

Check out the tracks: “Pressure”, “Allentown” and “Goodnight Saigon”. 

This double LP Original Master Recording housed in a gatefold sleeve is pressed at 45 r.p.m. in the USA on 180 gram audiophile vinyl, featuring remastered audio and individually numbered.

(821797238717)

Tracklisting:

 

 

Title

Time

A1

Allentown

3:52

A2

Laura

5:05

B1

Pressure

4:40

B2

Goodnight Saigon

7:04

C1

She’s Right On Time

4:14

C2

A Room Of Our Own

4:04

C3

Surprises

3:26

D1

Scandinavian Skies

6:00

D2

Where’s The Orchestra?

3:17

SKU 821797238717
Record Label Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab
Label / Model # Independent
Catalogue Number MFSL 2-387
Country US - United States
Release Date (Year) 10 June 2014
Original Release Date (Year) 23 September 1982
Barcode # 821797238717
Shipping Weight 0.7900kg
Shipping Width 0.012m
Shipping Height 0.314m
Shipping Length 0.314m
Shipping Cubic 0.001183000m3
Type New
Format Limited Edition Double Album 2LP Records, 180 Gram Audiophile Vinyl, Gatefold Sleeve, Inner Sleeves, Reissue, Remastered Audio, 45 RPM, Individually Numbered
Vinyl Colour Black
Genre Rock
Genre Pop Rock
Genre Pop
Genre Classic Rock
Format VINYL LP

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