Picks and Pans Review: Deep in the Heart of Nowhere

updated 01/19/1987 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 01/19/1987 AT 01:00 AM EST

Bob Geldof

Criticizing Geldof these days is akin to throwing rocks at the Easter Bunny. After all, the former Boomtown Rat, who spearheaded such humanitarian efforts as Band Aid and Live Aid, is a close second to the International Red Cross in promoting global goodwill. This debut solo album, however, suggests that Geldof has yet to get a handle on music making in the way he has fund raising. Deep in the Heart of Nowhere is an awkward collection of tunes by a talented musician who hasn't matured as a singer or songwriter. Geldof wrote all the music and lyrics for this LP except the bouncy Love Like a Rocket. Cowritten by the Eurythmics' Dave Stewart and bolstered by some spiffy guitar licks by Eric Clapton, that track has enough vitality to send the dance crowd into at least a suborbit. The only other cut that has any pulse is the convincingly atmospheric The Beat of the Night, a chilling tale about a late-night London murder scene. The rest are half-baked songs that remain unleavened despite generous support from Clapton, Stewart, Brian Setzer, Alison Moyet, Maria McKee and Annie Lennox. Maybe Geldof will figure a way to translate good intentions into good music. (Atlantic)

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