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One of a Kind

Orleans 1982


The last of three records by the {$Orleans} while {$John Hall} was in exile, the band goes for a harder-edged sound with {@the Empire Project}'s {$Don Silver} producing this release on {@Radio Records}/{@Atlantic}. When they do get mellow, as on their version of a hit already covered by {$the Everly Brothers}, {$Betty Everett}/{$Jerry Butler}, {$Glen Campbell}/{$Bobby Gentry}, {&"Let It Be Me,"} it is without the charm that made earlier {$Orleans} so radio friendly. {$Willie Nelson} charted with his remake of the same song this very year, 1982, and the difference between the two renditions is the difference between success and failure. {$Larry Hoppen}'s {&"I Found Someone"} almost makes it, while {$the Hoppens Brothers}' {&"Beatin' Around the Bush"} shows why this new formula just didn't have enough of that intangible element that brings OK music to the level of greatness, a level much of this ensemble achieved with {&"Love Takes Time."} As the {^Forever} album dipped into the world peopled by the likes of {$the Atlanta Rhythm Section}, {&"One of a Kind"} goes after {$the Doobie Brothers}' 1976 {&"Takin' It to the Streets"} style of white urban {\rock & roll}. It sounds forced, especially the title track and {&"I Found Someone,"} attempting to rewrite {$Robbie Dupree}'s 1980 hit {&"Steal Away"} -- itself a steal of {$Michael McDonald}'s {&"What a Fool Believes"} sound of 1979. {$Lance Hoppen} and {$Larry Hoppen} then take the {$Phil Collins} {&"In the Air Tonight"} motif and give it the sentimentality of {$John Hall}'s {&"Power"} for {&"Save Our Planet,"} even saying "harness the power." The album cover is one of {$Orleans}' best: snowflakes over an ocean sunset (or sunrise), with the same tone {$Firefall} put on their album jackets. Side two fares better, {$Larry Hoppens}' {&"Keep On Shining"} perhaps the album's best track. {&"Gotta Lotta Money (Big Deal)"} and {&"Give In to It"} sound like {$the Doobie Brothers} (that piano) meets {$Pablo Cruise}. {$Wells Kelly} had passed away by the time this album was released, so {$Jerry Marotta} provided the drums, {$Lane Hoppen} performing on piano with {$Larry Hoppen}. It's {$Larry}'s album, as he wrote or co-wrote all nine originals, the {\ballad} {&"Circles"} being adequate, while {&"Move On,"} the final tune and one of three co-written with brother {$Lance Hoppen}, is just too little too late. It's watered-down {&"Love Takes Time"} referencing {$Pablo Cruise}'s "love will find a way" with the lyrics as an earlier song referenced that group with guitar lines. This was the big opportunity for {$Larry Hoppen} to shine while away from {$John Hall}'s songwriting dominance, but it is so derivative it shows the band aimlessly seeking direction, something that they would only find when {$Bob Leinbach} from 1979's {^Forever} and co-founder{$Hall} returned to the fold. {$Orleans} would release live versions of past glories on their {@Major Label} imprint, the band stronger and more focused joining forces after all the time apart, but the disappointment of {^One of a Kind} is that with stronger production and more careful song selection, it could have been so much more. ~ Joe Viglione, Rovi
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  1. # Track Artist Length
  2. 1 One of a Kind Orleans 3:18
  3. 2 I Found Someone Orleans 4:6
  4. 3 Let It Be Me Orleans 3:7
  5. 4 Beatin' Around the Bush Orleans 4:7
  6. 5 Save Our Planet Orleans 6:22
  7. 6 Keep on Shinging Orleans 3:59
  8. 7 Gotta Lotta Money (Big Deal) Orleans 3:37
  9. 8 Give in to It Orleans 4:16
  10. 9 Circles Orleans 2:35
  11. 10 Move On Orleans 3:59

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