The Pretenders: James Honeyman Scott (vocals, guitar, keyboards); Chrissie Hynde (vocals, guitar); Pete Farndon (vocals, bass); Martin Chambers (vocals, drums).
Additional personnel: Chris Thomas (keyboards, sound effects); Gerry Mackleduff (drums).
Recorded at Wessex Studios, London, England.
Personnel: James Honeyman-Scott (vocals, guitar, keyboards); Chrissie Hynde (vocals, guitar); Martin Chambers (vocals, drums); Pete Farndon (vocals); Chris Mercer (saxophone); Jim Wilson , Henry Lowther (trumpet); Geoff Bryant (horns); Chris E. Thomas, Chris Thomas (keyboards).
Audio Mixers: Mike Stavrou; Bill Price .
Recording information: AIR Studios; Wessex Studios, London, England.
Photographers: Chalkie Davies; Des Letts; Tom Sheehan .
Former rock critic Chrissie Hynde launched the Pretenders with an engaging, yet passive, version of the Kinks' "Stop Your Sobbing." She unveiled her own persona fully on The Pretenders, which contains a series of excellent compositions marked by her sensual vocals and brilliant sense of dynamics. An understanding of pop's structures allowed Hynde to exploit them to her own ends while sympathetic support, particularly that of guitarist James Honeyman-Scott, used the excitement of rock without reference to its cliches. Tough and opinionated, Chrissie Hynde's first declaration of independence established the formula she proceeded to follow.
Rolling Stone (10/31/02, p.136) - Ranked # 12 in Rolling Stone's "Women in Rock: The 50 Essential Albums"
Rolling Stone - Ranked # 20 in Rolling Stone's "100 Best Albums Of The Eighties" survey (November 1989).
Rolling Stone (p.113) - 5 stars out of 5 - "PRETENDERS stands as a stunning confluence of hooks, sonics and substance - it's one of those rare albums on which every move turns out to be the right one."
Alternative Press (7/01, p.96) - Included in AP's "10 Essential Women's Rock Albums" - "...An absolute classic album...a set of tough, distinctive pop songs..."
CMJ (1/5/04, p.6) - Ranked #2 in CMJ's "Top 20 Most-Played Albums of 1980".