I love this album. I love the cover too. Two of my all time favorite Billy Joel songs would have to be James and Summer Highland Falls. Billy seems to play Summer Highland Falls live but I would love to hear him pull James out again.
In my opinion, Turnstiles is the only Billy Joel album that stands even with The Stranger as his magnum opus. Liberty Devitto, who would become the Billy Joel band's permanent drummer, was admitted in time for this record. His power is clearly evident on "Say Goodbye To Hollywood", Billy's au revoir to life in California. A compelling ballad is found in "Summer, Highland Falls", written as creatively emotional as possible. A hit-and-miss was included on the album; this was the slow and forgettable "All You Wanna Do Is Dance". However, the rebuttal of "New York State Of Mind" as Turnstiles' signature piece offers a wonderful sax solo and a taste of good ol' New York pride. Joel excercised some excellent songcraft with "Prelude/Angry Young Man"; the song opens with a fantastically quick piano arrangement ("Prelude"), followed by some of his catchiest lyrics ("Angry Young Man"). My personal favorite track however, is the epic finale, "Miami 2017 (Seen The Lights Go Out On Broadway)". There is a true energy in this song seldom found on Joel's records. Turnstiles was an ode to the Empire State that New Yorker's should be proud of, and I easily grant it a 5/5.
Total Sales: (Unfortunately, only) 1 Million
My absolute two favorite songs are never played on the air - both come from this album
James and Angry Young man. Both speak to me - for over 30 years now!
I personally love this album. Not many people do. But I think it is great! I'd give it a 8 out of 10.
The 12 year old Billy Joel fan
"Working to hard can give you a heart attack ak ak ak ak ak"
This is the first Billy Joel album that I was really into. Of course, I was already familiar with some of the bigger hits like Say Goodbye to Hollywood and New York State of Mind. But Summer, Highland Falls has got to be one of my favorite BJ songs. I love the poetry of this song. He captures the monotony of relationships but in such a way that you see that it is just the natural highs and lows that we all experience in any relationship. I love the beginning...They say that these are not the best of times... Makes me think of Charles Dickens and his Tale of Two Cities - it was the best of times, it was the worst of times. Only Billy can use Dickens with such panache. Of course, I've Loved these Days continues his poetry theme. I reallly like that he doesn't need to 'dumb down' the lyrics for the masses. An intellectual can enjoy his use of vocabulary without listening to an artist resort to profanity to get the message across. A welcome break from the lack of intellectual gymnastics that most exhibit today in their songs. And rounding out a top to bottom great album is Miami 2017. Who could have predicted such a disaster would befall NYC and America 25 years later? I know the song references others events in NYC history but we can all take a little of that song and apply it to more recent events. I can't leave out the musicality that Billy uses to such great effect. He and the band know when to supply the right rise and fall that give even more meaning to the song. I really love listening to his instrumental songs because you get an even deeper feel for the emotion of the song. A true artist!
This was the first masterpiece album by an artist that would soon become a household name.