Deco - Fresh idea (1983)

A review by Patrik Andersson

Deco - Fresh ideaOne hit wonders is always intriguing, Deco is one of them. Let's go back to 1983 and two friends that had a bunch of songs ready for that final step. They called them self "Deco", a style of design from the 20s and 30s that's shines through on the album cover design. Deco comprised Philip Ingram, younger brother of no one less than James Ingram, and Zane Giles. To have a brother named James Ingram is not bad but using his friendship with Mr Q, Quincy Jones, getting a contract, is even better. Subsequently Q hired them on his Quest label and gave them the sought after "ready to go" sign! The nine-track album "Fresh idea" was finally released in 1983. Ingram and Zane stood for all the song material except three tracks on the B-side from various other writers. Q brought in Ollie E. Jerry to produce (and play on) the set, best known for his enchanting hit "There's no stopping us" with his band Ollie & Jerry in 1984. Even Ray Parker Jr. jumped in on guitar on the final track.

Deco comes out strong with the title track on side one. The slick danceable hit is as refreshing as the title suggests, joyous as a summer day. Ray Parker Jr & Raydio have some influences here that also can be said for the rest of the album. Ingram and Zane's voices that occurs on all the grooves merge pleasantly and never lacks of inspiration, its just pure joy! The album mixes different styles that are shown on funkier mid-tempo track "I'll be there" that is replaced by the more soft-spoken and very competent "I'm so glad I met you". Side A ends with a funky ballad "Someone special", all very polished and appealing.

Bang! The B-side hits you in the face with a rock funk flavoured dance piece "Let this be your night". Besides the highly appealing and bouncy funk piece "Live my fantasy" by Ingram and Zane and the mid-tempo ballad "Delicious" by Danny Sembello and David Batteau the rest written by outsiders is not very impressive so I skip them all.

On a whole a good album even though the quality goes up and down. The title track is without a doubt the most memorable one here but Deco shows great potential on several other tracks, well worth a closer look as well. Despite high hopes from the two friends, a second release never saw the day and Deco disappeared from the limelight.

This review was orginally published on