Atlanta was home to Whiteface, one of the city's greatest hopes near the end of the 70's. Having conquered the area and honed their skills gigging as the house band at The Bistro, the band came to the attention of Mercury Records and inked a deal in the summer of 1978. Work commenced on their debut, which came in the form of "Whiteface" in 1979. With a highly stylized funk/pop/AOR hybrid sound, the band forged a unique musical vision that failed to net any real success with the masses. Though the band did tour quite a bit during this time, their powerhouse reputation did not translate elsewhere, leaving them frustrated and exhausted. This setback signalled the exit of bassist, Kyle Henderson in 1980.
Determined to move forward, the band ushered Barry Dunaway into Henderson's place and soon began work on their followup. In 1981, "Change of Face" hit the streets and once again Whiteface were met with indifference at every turn. Despite their virtuosity and sleek production, the changing climate in the industry proved to be the death knell, prompting a breakup in late 1982. Henderson went on to success with The Producers for over a decade, while the remaining members worked in various capacities with artists like Blackfoot, Ted Nugent, Pat Travers, John Mayall and Yngwie Malmsteen.
"Whiteface" is a prime example of style over substance. Though there's no denying the band were masters of their instruments, the album falls flat in its own effort to dazzle the senses. Sounding like a cross between Pablo Cruise, Doobie Brothers and Baby Grand, Whiteface fail to make a musical statement here. Sure, it's all well played and there are some hooks....but most of the material here is inoffensive generic pop. There are some highlights like "Talk of the Town" and "Three Ring Circus", but much of this is heavily steeped in whitebread disco, which was sweeping the nation during this time. Simply put, though this is a commendable effort, it misses the mark completely. Be sure to download this pristine vinyl transfer from 'melodicrocker123' and judge for yourself.