Shake It Up The Cars

Album info

Album-Release:
1981

HRA-Release:
18.07.2014

Label: Warner Music Group

Genre: Pop

Subgenre: Pop Rock

Album including Album cover

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  • 1Since You're Gone03:31
  • 2Shake It Up03:33
  • 3I'm Not The One04:16
  • 4Victim Of Love04:25
  • 5Cruiser04:58
  • 6A Dream Away05:44
  • 7This Could Be Love04:27
  • 8Think It Over04:57
  • 9Maybe Baby05:06
  • Total Runtime40:57

Info for Shake It Up

A return to form after the departure that was 1980’s muddled Panorama, the Cars’ Shake It Upbursts forth with a rich assembly of synthesizers, drum machines, electronic blips, and catchy melodies that make it an early '80s pop staple. Known the world over, the famous title track proves the band’s arrangement skills were in perfect shape and set the stage for a record overflowing with memorable hooks and complementary rock riffs.

Shake It Up also plays witness to primary songwriter/vocalist Ric Ocasek’s increased cynicism and biting wit. While the Cars never took a rosy-eyed view of romance, the songs here impart a newfound sense of sympathy, regret, limbo, and reservation. The beauty of the Cars—and all ten tunes here—is that the music suggests something else entirely. Such subliminal emotions and dynamic contrasts act as a magnet, and the band plays as if it’s in on the secret.

Apart from the party vibe of the title cut, the Cars aim for deeper targets and smarter undertones.Shake It Up is defined by an urban edginess and modern feel that comes alive on tunes such as “Cruiser” and circular “I’m Not the One,” a pop gem laded with stacked vocals and keyboard lines that double as a horn section. The band’s arrangements have never been better—or more involved. Absent the cheesiness that would mar the group’s late-period work, the songs ride on the strength of keyboard-heavy lines and layered harmonies. You will not be disappointed.

Ric Ocasek, guitar, lead vocals (on tracks 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 9)
Ben Orr, bass, lead vocals (on tracks 5, 7, 8)
Elliot Easton, guitar, background vocals
Greg Hawkes, keyboards, background vocals
David Robinson, drums, background vocals

Recorded at Synchro Sound Studios, Boston, USA in 1981
Engineered by Ian Taylor
Produced by Roy Thomas Baker

Digitally remastered


The Cars
In many ways, The Cars were the prototypical American new wave band of the 1980s. Barging into a pop-music scene then overwhelmed by English New Romantic pretty-boy bands, The Cars’ highly polished, chrome-plated four-on-the-floor rock ’n’ roll charged up the charts like a souped-up Camaro racing to the checkered flag—with the band’s Alberto Vargas-designed album art glinting like metal-flake paint on a hot rod.

Cars co-founders Ric Ocasek and Benjamin Orr had been writing songs and forming bands together since 1972, when they first teamed as two-thirds of the folk trio Milkwood (whose one album also featured Cars’ future keyboardist Greg Hawkes). In 1974, Ocasek and Orr joined with Elliot Easton to form the legendary Boston band, Cap’n Swing, which lasted but a year. Finally, in 1976, the trio called in Hawkes and ex-Modern Lovers drummer David Robinson, and The Cars were ready to roll.

The Cars, released in the spring of ’78, spun off three hit singles (“Just What I Needed,” “My Best Friend’s Girl,” and “Good Times Roll”) and graced the charts for more than two and a half years, eventually going platinum six times over. Their debut was so successful, in fact, that Elektra delayed the release of the band’s 1979 follow-up, Candy-O, for several months. Candy-O, 1980’s Panorama, and 1981’s Shake It Up each, in turn, went platinum, and the latter’s title track became the group’s first Top 10 hit. Along the way, Ocasek began establishing a reputation as a producer, working with such bands as Suicide, Bad Brains, and Romeo Void.

After Shake It Up, the band members took a break, with Ocasek, Orr, and Hawkes all recording solo albums. It must have done them good, for their next album, Heartbeat City, became their most successful. Released in 1984, Heartbeat City sprang to #3 on the album charts and produced four Top 40 singles (“You Might Think,” “Magic,” “Drive,” and “Hello Again”). These singles also broke new ground visually with their inventive, computer-animated videos, which each received heavy rotation on the then-nascent MTV.

The next two years found the band on another extended leave (with solo albums from Ocasek, Orr, and Easton), followed by 1987’s only somewhat successful Door To Door. The Cars disbanded in February 1988. Ocasek went on to release seven solo albums and produced some of the biggest names in ’90s rock. Easton took to the road with Creedence Clearwater Revisited. Orr, after a long and painful battle, succumbed to pancreatic cancer in 2000.

The Cars legacy continued in to the 21st century with the release of a live concert DVD, a double-disc deluxe edition of their classic self-titled debut album, and the ultimate Cars collection, Complete Greatest Hits.

This album contains no booklet.

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