Elton John, Ice on Fire

Barry Walters

By Barry Walters

on 09.24.12 in Reviews

Ice On Fire

Elton John
Flippant yet bland

Producer Gus Dudgeon returns for Elton’s 1985 flippant yet bland Ice on Fire, but only guitarist Davey Johnstone from the old band remains. The sound is indeed icy, no doubt a result of the era’s new digital doo-dads, but there’s not much fire: Armies of session players fill the spaces, yet only Wham! bassist Deon Estus and his twisty funk riffs win the war: Not even Queen’s rhythm section can rescue the turgid “Too Young.” George Michael’s insanely squeaky falsetto is the best thing about the rambling faux-soul romp “Wrap Her Up.” You know Elton’s in serious trouble when even his camp falls flat.