Customer Reviews: The Seventh One
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4.8 out of 5 stars
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Marking their first decade as a recording entity this album found Toto following up to a pair of very mainstream, techno rock oriented albums that tended to sacrifice style over substance. Sometimes this 1988 release doesn't exactly change everything about that. Although it does take important cues from their breakthrough album 'IV'. They chose to concentrate their energies on the quality of their music and playing as opposed to the production layers. And that means that this is an album that takes their excellent music "chops" and inventive ideas into a place where just about all listeners could enjoy them without feeling like it was homework. Basically they made this kind of technically precise music seem easy to make. It does have it's flaws for sure. But in every measurable way the pluses far outweigh the minuses.

Even down to the title being a woman's name "Pamela" pretty much xerox's the music of their 1982 breakthrough hit "Rosanna". That isn't a bad thing because that represented one of the funkiest ends of their rhythmic arsenal. "Mushanga" is one of the more thoroughly musical songs on the album,a rather brooding,minor chorded jazz-pop/rock fusion type number that has that dark late 80's fusion style written all over it. What really shines on this tune though is Mike Porcaro's great upfront,funk bass popping and Patti Austin's ghostly vocals. The mixture of in-your-face solos and far away vocals give the song much of it's character. "Straight For The Heart" has a nice rock n soul shuffle to it,and it's a style that works well to Toto's effect. Where the album goes a bit off is songs such as "Only The Children". Because Toto are so much about instrumental flow and polish big beats,arena friendly vocals and heavily amped guitars just don't tend to mesh all that well. At best they sound a copy of Boston or Journey's hits. While those excellent rock bands came to it with very distinct flavors Toto never emerged with enough of a "rock" sound of their own to really effect.

Nothing here is truly terrible on this album. Honestly with the exception of the slick dance-pop of "Stop Loving You" other songs such as "Stay Away","A Thousand Years" and "Home Of The Brave" are not really very distinctive. All the Toto albums I've heard have had a certain measure of unevenness. As much as their music is AOR styled,underneath it all they tend to be a band who shine stronger on single songs. Doesn't mean their a singles ACT-not all Toto hits represent their best songs. They just don't seem to have the ability to stretch their songs and abilities across a full length studio album.
There would be a number of vocalist and general personal changes that would derail the band further from their intentions. So this is actually one of their strongest albums since 1982 overall,since non of the "filler" material was particularly weak this time around. In fact if your looking for a decent Toto album from later in the 80's this wouldn't be a bad choice.
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on October 22, 2015
The Seventh One is the group Toto's seventh studio album, hence the title. It featured the hit single Pamela, which made it to #22 on the Billboard charts. It was the second album with Joseph Williams on lead vocals, until their new album Toto XIV, this year. I got the cd, here on Amazon, and a free digital album is included. It was released in 1988, and produced, and recorded by Toto, George Massenburg, and Bill Payne. Toto on the Seventh One included Steve Lukather-guitars and vocals, David Paich-keyboards and vocals, Mike Porcaro-bass, Jeff Porcaro-drums and percussion, Steve Porcaro-synthesizers, and programming. It is worth.noting here, these musicians, some of the very best in the business, have played on numerous albums as studio musicians, from Michael Jackson, Lionel Richie, Pink Floyd, Boz Skaggs to name a few. Included on the album are top vocalists Tom Kelly, Patti Austin, and Jon Anderson (Yes) on Stop Loving You, and Linda Ronstadt on Stay Away. Toto horns -Tom Scott, Jim Horn, Jerry Hey, Chuck Findley, James Pankow, Gar Grant, Gary Herbig, also some of the very best horn players appear on the album. Percussion specialists are Lenny Castro, Michael Fisher, Jim Keltner, and Joe Porcaro. David Lindley plays lap steel on Stay Away, and Andy Narell-Steel drums on Muschanga.
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on June 24, 2015
A wonderful collection of tunes from Toto, though not their best work. Popular songs, Pamela, Stop Loving You and Home of the Brave are on this CD first released in 1988. Whether your a long-time Toto fan or not, this is rock music at its finest from one of the best bands ever.
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on March 24, 2012
I love Luke's playing. This album was a return to the more melodic aspects of the group's early 80s sound. Jeff Pocaro does his magic as well here: Just play the golden groove. Best tracks: The whole thing really! Check out Luke's Ripley guitar playing on " A Thousand Years " or Jeff's Stevie Wonder esque groove on " Pamela. " Not a wasted note. Listen and love it!
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on July 25, 2010
This Toto album gives a different example of what these guys can accomplish. Writing music that was suited the era while keeping the essential flavor that is Toto. You can see their musical progression from their debut album in 1978 to this appropriately named seventh album ten years later. Catchy, well written tunes with a subtle layer of complex arangements, shots and modulations that give the songs an ora of musical sophistication while being, on the surface, easy enough for everyone to relate to (not just to over-analytical music geeks like me).
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on March 2, 2015
last truly awesome Toto album! every song is a masterpiece, what the heck happened to these guys?????? subsequent albums find the band without an identity, they changed musical direction with far less energy and melodic catchy songs. However, i do Have high hopes for the new album thats coming out soon with joe williams back in fold. but this one thou. it's a classic!
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on March 29, 2010
Coming from an absolute Toto fanatic, of course I won't give any of their albums a bad review. The Seventh One, however, is definitely one of my favorites. I love love love Joseph Williams' voice! My absolute favorite song is A Thousand Years- somehow it moves me every time. Great work Toto.
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on March 21, 2013
This is a great Toto CD, if you're a Toto fan. As (I understand) Toto will no longer be touring again, snag up your Toto CD's as quickly as you can. This CD was delivered in exactly the condition described on Amazon and delivered promptly.
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on April 18, 2010
Released: Mar 1988 Produced by: George Massenburg, Bill Payne, Toto
Solid "follow-up" to Fahrenheit treads similar ground. Single "Pamela" (Billboard #22) is catchy "Rosanna" rip-off that actually works on it's own. A few more dead spots than superior predecessor, and suffers from dated digital mix, but highlights ("Pamela," infectious "Stop Loving You," shuffling groove of "These Chains") more than make up for faults (pedestrian "Stay Away," dated "Straight Through The Heart," sleepy "A Thousand Years"). David Paich lead vocal meter: 1/2 of a tune. First album to feature Steve Porcaro as guest, which would continue as permanent situation. Vocalist Williams in fine form again. Love that Lukather photo on the sleeve! Really the end of an era; following tour, Williams would be gone, band would re-think identity after record label forced new vocalist they didn't want, control would shift in leaner, totally different band. Tragedy would also strike at the very heart of the group. Recommended.
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on December 21, 2013
Thanks Toto for being such incredible musicians and an awesome team of players/artist. Never stop making such magical moments for all of us.
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