Mark Mallman – Invincible Criminal

January 01, 1970



Mark Mallman’s infatuation with music of arena sized
proportion goes to its ultimate extreme with Invincible Criminal, an album that recalls such enduring ‘70s icons
as David Bowie, Elton John, Freddie Mercury and, yes, even the mighty
Meatloaf.  Mallman makes no attempt to
temper his artsy exuberance, and in fact, the entire album exudes a certain
theatrical flair, a big, brassy sound chock full of effusive, emphatic


While such over-indulgence often leads to unpredictable
results, somehow Mallman manages to keep the proceedings, however extravagant,
from straying too far from focus.  Still,
songs like “Eternal Sunshine,” “Mercy Calls,” “Put Your Collar Up” and “You’re
Never Alone in New York” (a duet with longtime pal Craig Finn of Hold Steady)
suggests a certain cocksure determination that borders on bravado.  Fortunately Mallman doesn’t neglect the need
to sway his audiences, and the infectious refrains that grace “White Leather
Days,” the alluring piano pop of “In These Times of Harsh Economy,” and the
inherent drama that drives “Don’t Spill the Bottle” show his ability to
effectively temper the dynamics. 


Then again, this is the same guy once credited with
performing the longest rock song on record… not once, but twice – first with
“Marathon,” which came in at over 26 hours, and – natch — “Marathon 2,” which
more than doubled the previous attempt.  It’s
no wonder then that Mallman sometimes seems a bit over the top.  Ten years and nine albums on, one gets the
impression he’s still asserting his ambitions.


Standout tracks: “You’re Never Alone in New York,” “Eternal Moonshine,” “In These Times of Harsh



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