The third and final Rose album was the band's last-ditch effort to release something commercially viable before their label gave up on them completely. Didn't work, but that's probably got as much to do with the state of the music industry and the economy in the late seventies as it does with the quality of the band's work.
Many of the songs here are leftovers from the 'A Taste of Neptune' release that came out earlier in the year. And many of them sound like it too, especially the lackluster "Whirling Dervish" and "On Judgment Day" and the obvious filler tracks "Magic of the Holidays" (this came out in time for Christmas) and "Tender is the Night" (which I believe was written for this record by bassist Gary Lalonde but is still rather forgettable).
There are a few good tunes as well, particularly on the first side of the vinyl (this record has never been reissued on CD as far as I know). The opening "Between the Lines" has a sort of late Captain Beyond vibe and some decent drums fills that work pretty well as an opening track. "Johnny Law" is in the Bad Company mold and features a young Annie Woods who would become Holly Woods and end up fronting Canadian arena-rock stars Toronto which guitarist Brian Allen and drummer Jim Fox would form after Rose folded in 1978.
The band also wastes a perfectly good Queen-like rock-opera bit on the lame "Recession, Depression", a rather narcissistic view of hard times that features some of the most insipid lyrics I've heard in quite a while: "the world is starting to bend, is this the 30s again", "sacrifice isn't nice". Crappy lyrics, but otherwise one of the better songs on the album.
Overall this one is forgettable, and apparently Polydor agreed as they dropped the band almost immediately following the release. Allen and Fox formed Toronto, Lalonde ended up in Honeymoon Suite and I believe keyboardist/lead vocalist Ron Glatley ended up in studio production somewhere in Ontario.
If you ever want to hear the progression (or descent, depending on your viewpoint) of a band from a young, independent and somewhat idealistic group of friends, into a full- fledged b-list rock band with aspirations of fame and fortune, these are your guys. Ultimately all of them did end up finding fame (and presumably fortune) in the music industry, but not on the strength of Rose. Two stars out of five for this one, and not really recommended.
Ron Glatley: keyboards, vocals
Brian Allen: guitars, vocals
Gary Lalonde: bass, vocals
James Fox: drums, percussion, vocals
Produced by Fraser Kaufman