Quid Pro Quo ends the longest wait for a new Status Quo album since the legendary band's first hit in 1969, following on four years after 2007's In Search Of The Fourth Chord. It marks a return to Quo recording duties for frontman, Francis Rossi, after his solo album One Step At A Time. Prior to the album's release, a charity single, In The Army Now 2010, and a free download, "Rock 'n' Roll 'n' You", were released with the latter generating much interest in the Quo community.
Over the years since the reformation of the band in 1986 (and quite possibly prior to that) there has been much consternation in the Quo fan community about the quality of the band's output, and various debates have raged regarding the sorts of tracks the band has laid down and whether some members of the band are up to the job. Therefore, watching the debates that raged about whether this album was the long-awaited 'return to form' did not surprise me. The going rumour prior to release was that this would be the most rocking Status Quo album in years.
The album, when it arrived, did not disappoint on its promise. There is rock in abundance here! The overall sound is generally what you'd expect from Quo. In comparing it to In Search Of The Fourth Chord I notice that is a little more of an echo soak here but this may just be taking the edge off of the years on vocals. However, as a counter to that, it should be noted that in terms of vocal performance, this album blows its predecessor out of the water. It feels like Rossi and Parfitt had more fun recording this album, and some of Parfitt's vocals in particular are top class.
"Two Way Traffic" - A fast paced standard rock song and one that has proved popular with many on the message boards since the album's release. The chorus is quite catchy but the song as a whole isn't really my thing—I like the Quo boogie shuffle or pop happy sounds and this isn't really that.
"Rock 'n' Roll 'n' You" - This track, released as a free download prior to release, is an archetypal Quo track, with the unmistakable rhythm of boogie-shuffle. The track is likeable if not spectacular, the lyrics are nothing to write home about and the solo is a tad short but generally the track is OK and I have often found myself humming the chorus under my breath.