Terri Nunn: Moment

Came across this cassette of Terri Nunn’s Moment of Truth, released in 1991. Remembered her from Berlin, but tired of “Take My Breath Away“. Thought Moment of Truth was quite good, with excellent vocals:

Turns out it was her only solo album. As discovered when reading about it in Wikipedia, including the summary of reviews slagging the release, as found on December 22:

Allmusic wrote “With Berlin having hit an artistic high note on 1986’s Count Three and Pray, it was most regrettable when the trio broke up. Moment of Truth made the breakup seem all the more regrettable. Minus the input of her colleagues from Berlin, Nunn delivers a run-of-the-mill pop/rock offering that isn’t terrible, but pales in comparison to her inspired performances on Berlin gems. Despite a few decent spots, including the rap/rock protest song “89 Lines” and the single “Let Me Be the One,” the album really isn’t worth the price of admission. Any one of Berlin’s three albums would be a much better investment.”[16]

On February 14, 1992, Orlando Sentinel wrote “Singers are always leaving bands to pursue their own musical identities. But Terri Nunn apparently took the singular route of defecting from Berlin to pursue an identity crisis. On her solo debut, Nunn can’t make up her mind whether to be the poor man’s Johnette Napolitano (Confession Time), Pat Benatar (Once Upon a Time), Ann Wilson (Let Me Be the One and Who’s Gonna Take You Home Tonight) or Debbie Harry (89 Lines). Nunn doesn’t achieve an outright facsimile of any of them, mind you, but she has that cover-band-singer’s ability to avoid establishing any fixed vocal personality of her own. Nunn’s songwriting is strictly of the generic-confessional variety, and the songs by outside writers are just as formulaic and pedestrian. The host of backing musicians, including producer David Z. (Fine Young Cannibals, Prince, Madonna), provide a thoroughly unexceptional setting, and although the credits list drums, the rhythms all sound as if they were programmed by a particularly uninspired technician.”[17]

On December 12, 1991, Chicago Tribune wrote “Former Berlin “Take My Breath Away” songstress Nunn relives that hit over and over again here. Where is the girl who went “Riding on the Metro”? Gone for good, sadly, even if she still has a wonderful voice. Songs like “Let Me Be the One” and “Who’s Gonna Take You Home Tonight” are nearly indistinguishable from Heart hits like “Alone” or “Who Will You Run To”. The “Moment of Truth” is that Nunn wants to make some bucks-even if it is in adult contemporary radio.”[18]

Trouser Press wrote a review of the album along with three releases from the band The Big F, which featured ex-Berlin key member John Crawford. The review of the Moment of Truth album wrote “For her futile second act, Berlin singer Terri Nunn hooked up with onetime Prince associate David Z., who produced and drummed, and Underworld guitarist Karl Hyde, who played and co-wrote four numbers. This dull-as-dirt generic rock pancake fails to establish Nunn as anything but…the former singer of Berlin. On “89 Lines,” she makes her borrowed political statement: “When I flag down a cab it doesn’t stop/Not because I look dangerous or nothing like that/It’s not ’cause he’s off duty/It’s ’cause I’m black.” (Shades of Steve Martin…) In the more relevant “Desire Me,” Nunn runs down her trusty list – “Birth/Love/Pain/Sex/Desire” — as if it were the pinnacle of wit and insight. In the little world of Moment of Truth — which more than anything sounds like late-’80s Pat Benatar outtakes — it is.”[19]

And then Nunn, in response, disavows her own work:

In a 1996 article by The Telegraph-Herald based on the reformed version of Berlin, it stated that Nunn “dismisses Moment of Truth as a transitional album.”[6]

Easy for the pile-on. Also regrettable.

Album not nearly as

As nearly as

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About brucelarochelle

Practising Lawyer and Part-Time University Instructor (Accounting, Commercial Law, Organizational Behaviour); Part-Time Federal Tribunal Member. Non-practising Chartered Professional Accountant (Chartered Accountant and Certified Management Accountant).
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