His new release “See You In Hell” (2008) is just brilliant. Absolutely brilliant. James skillfully updates the feel-good rock sound from the 80s by incorporating a tastefully modern edge. The 80s vibe still comes out strong – and that is a GOOD thing. Case in point: “Junk” comes complete with hand claps and Deborah Harry references, and I hear overtones of Psychedelic Furs, Timbuk 3 (especially “Hard Country”), a lively Mark Knopfler (Dire Straits) (“Wreckage of My Youth”), and a melodic Iggy Pop.
So who is this guy and where has be been? Freud has played in various bands during the 80s (including The Models), and then spent 1992 playing bass on Kylie Minogue’s first big tour. He then went “commercial” so to speak, writing over a hundred ads for television. Thankfully, he has returned to making his own music, which has culminated in the victorious “See You In Hell.”
Every track on this tight and coherent effort is a short ride on a pop rock thrill ride – the collective CD is like a day at the amusement park. The momentum just doesn’t stop until the very end, and the CD gets better with each listen. The highlights include “Desperation Road”, “Junk”, and “Guilty”. James Freud has delivered a masterpiece in the finest Aussie rock tradition – for fans of this genre, “See You In Hell” is a godsend.