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Friday, June 24, 2022

Partners In Crime (MCA, 1979)


Partners In Crime is an approachable, delicate and curious album about the continuing ironies of love, affection, and cheating. The first hit single of the 80's decade, "Escape (The Pina Colada Song)" presents our narrator -later our buddy and in some cases our alter ego- feeling the depressions of rutine in his relationship with his lady. Egotistically, he searchs the personal ads in a newspaper so he can run away from the boredom of eating the same rice-and-beans dinner every night. When he meets his connection, she happens to be his own girlfriend, also running away from him. The funny thing is one never knew the other actually love Pina Coladas, and to get caught in the rain. They were long-time lovers, and love, Rupert says, is a fading flower in a world where trust is also fading, each and every day.

The journey continues with the album's title track as we follow two couples: one, a teenage hooker that doesn't tell the difference between affection and self-esteem in her relationship with her pimp. The other couple, a dominatrix and his slave who, during office hours, is her boss. They have to know that something's wrong with their lifestyles, isn't it? How an innocent girl could be treated that way and feel that need for a pimp? How come work is a great aphrodisiac, turning simple people into power and pain? This song is a funky-cheating-adult-oriented number with a brilliant horn arrangement, putting us in the key-city of the cheating events: New York.

After a lament of being "Nearsighted" and being rejected by girls because of this -stupid excuse-, Rupert sighs and takes the story on the "Lunch Hour" in Manhattan, where a girl takes the cab to visit her current lover in a hotel, just when she was supposed to have a meal. "Whatever had for lunch agrees with you", Rupert comments with her. With the fast paced rhythm, he also introduces us to a "lunch hour" of a Brooklyn businessman and the hot stewardess from Air Canada he meets every day in a hotel. It's the most colorful and descriptive song of the album, and Holmes proves himself as a first-level narrator.

"Him" is the moment when the singer finds out he's been cheated for a while, the same way he's been doing it. A pack of cigarrettes, next to the window, that is not his brand proves it, and he sings with the biggest self-compassion ever present in a pop song. This guy, Holmes, must really know about love and deception, we think. And the songs' order is a good proof of that. After "Him", we can tell the broken hearted guy's is compulsevly searching for love with his "Answering Machine", he wonders about the women he'll never get to love when he sees them on the streets, and feels a lot of nostalgia. So he goes down to the bottom of his moods. But at the near end of the album, he decides to be sincere with himself and start believing that there must me something better than the life he's been thru. "Get outta yourself". Cheating is not about an obsession with other people but with ourselves and our lack of inner peace.

The end of the album is a resolution, a conclusion, a bet for love. "In You I Trust" completes the circle and leaves the listener ready for another pass of that sweet and sour taste of love, need, infatuation and cheat. A must for all wives and lovers around the World.


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