Picks and Pans Review: Good News from the Next World

updated 03/13/1995 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 03/13/1995 AT 01:00 AM EST

Simple Minds

Don't let the grandiose title fool you. This new release from the Scottish band—which has been hitless in the U.S. for nearly 10 years—is very bad news indeed. Once a five-member outfit, Simple Minds now consists just of singer Jim Kerr and guitarist Charlie Burchill. Less isn't more here: the music on the nine tracks follows a simple-minded formula of fuzz-box guitar licks and yelping, pseudo-sincere vocals. The lyrics are bar-band bad—full of burning hearts, shining stars, broken chains and runaway trains. And to think this tepid effort took four years to produce. Suddenly the sentiment behind the band's first big single, "Don't You (Forget About Me)," sounds more like a plaintive plea than a confident declaration. (Virgin)

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