March 03, 1986 12:00 PM

Peter Frampton

The decade-long eclipse of Frampton is hard to figure. Since the phenomenal success of Frampton Comes Alive in 1976, there hasn’t been much to cheer for, as the pickings got slimmer on each offering and eventually dwindled to Art of Control in 1982. This comeback album, his first since then, rarely quickens the pulse, but it shows that Frampton’s basic gifts—a lyrical guitar style and a delicately moving voice—are intact. Since his stint with Humble Pie, when he flew up and down the neck of his instrument with all the nimble speed of Led Zep’s Jimmy Page, Frampton has offered only teasing flashes of his guitar prowess. It’s been a long time since he cut loose as he does here on the cranked-up rocker You Know So Well. Frampton is still a polished melody writer too. It’s a shame his vocal delivery on Premonition, from the ballads to the raucous rave-ups, is so often wan and tentative. (Atlantic)

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