Great Buildings

  • Great Buildings
  • Great Buildings (Columbia) 1981 

Singer/rhythm guitarist Danny Wilde and bassist Ian Ainsworth were in Los Angeles’s Sparks-loving Quick before forming the far less quirky Great Buildings, just the sort of ersatz new wave band American major labels were signing willy-nilly at the dawn of the ’80s. Great Buildings is sparkling, tuneful pop with (mostly) generic romance lyrics, rich harmonies and a prominent role for Philip Solem’s lead guitar. Nothing too original, but credible enough for one album’s worth of tunes. Like other ambitious rockers, Wilde had toned down the youthful pep for mainstream marketability. It was still a long shot. Most such acts wound up on the soundtracks — or worse, as the band in the inevitable club scene — of shitty movies and then vanished from sight. Wilde was more determined than that, and stuck with Solem to form the Rembrandts, whose final claim to fame, of course, is the chirpy TV theme of Friends. Bravo boys.

[Ira Robbins]

See also: Quick