FOREIGNER – Can’t Slow Down – Deluxe Edition

FOREIGNER – Can’t Slow Down – Deluxe Edition

  • Rating: 4 / 6

Legendary rockers Foreigner hardly need any introduction and they are still a formidable and utterly fabulous live act today, but this studio album of theirs, which was recently reissued by earMUSIC in a nice-looking digipak containing an extra disc filled with bonus material, may be one of the more overlooked entries in their discography. Originally released back in 2009 and featuring the supremely talented Kelly Hansen on vocals, this 2CD deluxe edition is the perfect opportunity to either acquaint or reacquaint yourself with "Can’t Slow Down".

Many of the characteristics and trademarks that we associate with Foreigner are to be found here, especially when it comes to the melodies, arrangements, and harmonies. The title track is an infectiously catchy delight boasting a chorus worth dying for and "Give Me a Sign" is another strong track with a great drive to it. The gentle, Beatles-esque "Fool for You Anyway", which is the album closer, is a gem too. A few fillers do appear throughout and as such, this is not the most solid or cohesive offering by the band that you will come across with respect to depth and substance. The whole affair is slick and polished, which is not altogether that surprising, but I think a slight dose of grit and rawness could added a bit more edge and power to the compositions.

The second CD is comprised of bonus material – nearly all of which is culled from concerts and performances. You get live renditions of classic killer cuts ala "Cold as Ice" and "Juke Box Hero" as well as live orchestral versions of "Hot Blooded", "The Flame Still Burns", and "Head Games". There are more energetic and fist-pumping live releases by Foreigner out there than what you get here, but then again, the group always deliver the goods and only a grumpy sod would deem these particular renditions of timeless anthems such as "Urgent" and "Starrider" uninspired. The highlight here is the aforementioned "Juke Box Hero", which is simply phenomenal and downright breathtaking.

"Can’t Slow Down" is neither as memorable nor captivating as most other Foreigner records are, but it is most definitely worth a listen, which is merely another way of saying that although it is not as musically adventurous or unpredictable as previous Foreigner releases are, it is an enjoyable listen – just not utterly outstanding.