Main Course - Bee Gees

Date: 1975
Label:
RSO
Click here for full track listing

Where to Buy

Buy CD (released 1991)

Reviews
Nicholas James


Many regard Main Course as the Bee Gees finest moment. Following on from the groundwork the Bee Gees put in place the previous year with Mr Natural, with the Main Course album everything fell into place. The guys were back in the studio with Arif Mardin, but this time the guys had written an album with this style in mind. The outcome was breathtaking, proving yet again that the Bee Gees song writing is the key to their success. When sensational songs are matched with strong vocals and cutting edge production, as they are on this album, the result is a triumphant collection of songs that would do more than relaunch the group as a best-selling artists, it would eventually send their star higher than it had ever been and ultimately change popular music forever.

So what is so special about this album? This is the album in which Barry experimented for the first time with a falsetto vocal, which can be heard on 'Nights on Broadway', 'Fanny (Be Tender With My Love)' and 'Baby As You Turn Away'. The entire album has a much harder, more urban R&B style throughout, but it even manages to find space for a couple of beautiful country-style songs, 'Country Lanes' and 'Come On Over'.

'Jive Talkin' is the track that broke the Bee Gees back into the international charts, a funky little number that the brothers continued to play live throughout their career. Taking their lead from 'Jive Talkin', the best tracks are those which set the scene for the new style Bee Gees. 'Nights On Broadway' is a fantastic up-tempo pop track, with a 'middle eight' that will send a shiver down your spine. 'Wind Of Change' is a successful track about life on the city streets. 'Fanny (Be Tender With My Love)' is one of the most powerful love songs ever written, with soaring harmonies and a perfect melody. The other ballads on the album are almost as successful as 'Fanny': 'Songbird' is a gentle harmony ballad and 'Baby As You Turn Away' is an infectious song, presented almost entirely in falsetto. 'All This Making Love' and 'Edge Of The Universe' are standard pop songs, with a tongue-in-cheek twist, but even they (as probably the most insubstantial songs on the album) are first class.

There is not a weak track on this album. The Bee Gees had now found a new direction and a new sound. Supported by their incomparable song writing, this imaginative, driven band shot like a rocket to the pop aristocracy. Main Course is probably the best album the Bee Gees ever produced - although there are a number of other strong contenders for that title - and you will listen to it again and again and again. With their self-confidence back thanks to increasing record sales, they would now enter the period in which they made their largest contribution to rock and pop history.

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Where to Buy
Buy CD (released 1991)


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