Wednesday, December 12, 2012


YEAR:  1991
LABEL:  Capitol
TRACK LISTING:  Chocolate Cake,  It's Only Natural,  Fall At Your Feet,  Tall Trees,  Weather With You,  Whispers and Moans,  Four Seasons In One Day,  There Goes God,  Fame Is,  All I Ask,  As Sure As I Am,  Italian Plastic,  She Goes On,  How Will You Go
BONUS TRACKS:  I'm Still Here (a hidden track which starts 30 seconds after "How Will You Go" ends)
IMPRESSIONS:  The Finn Brothers always seemed to be playing leapfrog.  Split Enz had Tim but not younger brother Neil until a band shake-up left room for the youngster to join.  After several years, Tim would leave Split Enz for a solo career and Neil would carry on briefly as the band's leader before disbanding to form his own band Crowded House which released two albums to great commercial success.  Then, by the time of Crowded House's third album "WOODFACE" who should suddenly join the band but Tim Finn!  Until the next album, then he was gone again.  Crowded House would carry on for a while before disbanding and -- you guessed it -- Tim and Neil would team up for several albums under the Finn Brothers moniker.  As well as carrying-on with separate solo careers.  Oh yeah, but then there was Tim's mini-supergroup Alt . . . and that Pajama thing Neil's doing now . . . as well as having reformed Crowded House for a couple recent albums.  Whew!  Who can keep track.  But it doesn't really matter as the Finn Brothers are better together than separately and "WOODFACE" is my favourite Crowded House album as, to me at the time, it was something of a Split Enz Mach II.  A statement on the "LOVE THAT ALBUM" podcast declared side one of "WOODFACE" to be one of the best side ones of any album.  Well, it is certainly pretty damned good.  The album didn't do nearly as well in the US as it should have owing mainly to the bone-headed decision to release "Chocolate Cake" (a good song, don't get me wrong) as the first single; not the best choice when you had such monumental songs as "Weather With You", "Fall At Your Feet" and "Four Seasons In One Day" to choose from, for Pete's sake!  "Fall At Your Feet" and "Four Seasons In One Day" remain some of my favourite songs by the brothers along with torch song "All I Ask" (the first song a Neil Finn composition with the latter two collaborations between the brothers).  
MY FAVOURITE TRACKS:  Chocolate Cake,  It's Only Natural,  Fall At Your Feet,  Weather With You,  Whispers and Moans,  Four Seasons In One Day,  All I Ask,  She Goes On
FACT SHEET:  WOODFACE is Crowded House's third album.  After the second album "TEMPLE OF LOW MEN", Neil and Tim Finn wrote songs together intending to release as a Finn Brothers album.  After these songs were recorded, Neil Finn rejoined Nick Seymour and Paul Hester to write and record the third Crowded House album; however the record label rejected most of these songs as unsuitable.  Neil asked Tim if they could use the songs the brothers had recorded for the Crowded House album and Tim (now stating that he was joking) said "Sure, but only if I can join the band".  Regardless, the record was recorded with Tim a full fourth member of Crowded House.  "All I Ask" was used for AIDS Awareness adverts in Australia.  Tim would leave the band during the UK tour for the album.  Nine songs were recorded for WOODFACE before Tim Finn became involved and were not included on the album:  "Anyone Can Tell", "Left Hand", "Dr. Livingstone", "Sacred Cow", "I Love You Dawn", My Telly's Gone Bung", "Time Immemorial", "Fields Are Full of Your Kind" and "My Legs Are Gone".  All but the last two songs were included on the 1999 rarities collection "AFTERGLOW"; the final two songs still remain unreleased.  Again, hilariously, New Zealand's favourite sons and their band Crowded House's album "WOODFACE" was named #3 in the greatest Australian album list. 

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