Archetypal prog journeyman and go-to bassist (Roxy, Crimson, Asia, UK, etc.), Wetton sings in an engaging tenor croon put to good, if inconsequential use here. As its title and treated monochromatic Hipgnosis sleeve* suggests, Crossfire trades in the taut guitar-led ‘energy’ of the late 70s/early 80s, which means it’s often fast with little conspicuous virtuosity, trots out vaguely edgy anti-romantic lyrics, features slightly menacing keyboard four-beat crochets and angry barre chord riffs muffled by the player’s right hand.
It’s funny, for a musician so steeped in progressive rock, Crossfire could be the product of Donnie Iris or Sniff ‘n’ the Tears or any number of enjoyable pop bands riding the coattails of the New Wave. This very commecial sounding record might have been a hit, but, without one absolute killer, like say ‘Heat of the Moment’, it’s merely likable proficiency, though ‘Cold Is the Night’ possesses some genuine grandeur.
One pound yesterday from a Hythe charity shop.
*So what is up with that cover? In keeping with the misogyny of the times, it looks like our forlorn hero is ‘caught in the crossfire’ of some sort of bitch-fest between his icy wife and spoilt daughter. Women, eh?