Slave To Love: The Best Of The Ballads
by Bryan Ferry, pop (2000)
EMI/Virgin, ASIN B00004TVV3

Bryan Ferry and his Roxy Music, to me, will always be the best of the New Romantics of the late 1970s and the 1980s. Ferry's sepulchral yet so seductive vocals have been my balm companion in late night hours when the world seems pretty meaningless and screwed up. And here he is, in this best-of compilation of Ferry's more interesting works - his ballads.

True, this guy's music is melodramatic and sometimes painfully showy, but still, I find Avalon as devastatingly romantic as ever, a truly beautiful song of the sensuality of dancing: When you bossa nova/There´s no holding/Would you have me dancing/Out of nowhere...

Then there's the aching Oh Yeah which invites me to gallop happily along the music as Ferry sings about love in his usual overblown, eccentric, and always attractive manner. There´s a band playing on the radio/With a rhythm of rhyming guitars/There's a band playing on the radio/And it´s drowning the sound of my tears/They´re playing Oh Yeah on the radio...

More Than Words is a fun, sunny pop tune that proves that there is no other like Ferry and Roxy Music - even the new lineup of 10,000 Maniacs failed to bring life to this song the way Ferry can. Ferry also covers music on his own, and his poignant version of Falling In Love Again is haunting while Crazy Love is beautifully moody.

All in all, this album is a glorious journey to the cathedral of aching, exaggerated romanticism of Bryan Ferry. Eccentric, overblown, and always with a twisted, sardonic view of romance's lil' hang-ups, Bryan Ferry has me closing my eyes and moving along to Avalon even after all these years.

Rating: 95

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