Saturday, 2 March 2013

Cassette experiment day 17 - Talk Talk 'Spirit of Eden'

In the 1980s and early 1990s Talk Talk weren’t a huge phone/broadband company. They were a popular musical group who released a few albums that saw dwindling critical acclaim and sales leading towards their inevitable demise.
To many ears at the time (mine included) they were at their best when at their most commercial. When they released ‘Spirit of Eden’ it received a fairly frosty reception from almost everyone (not least from their record label, apparently) who short-sightedly didn’t realise at the time that they’d be a massive influence on many acts including the later period Radiohead.
Possibly the least suitable album for consumption via cassette it featured six tracks (which is usually a good thing in my book) that meandered their slow, weary and, as we now know, ground-breaking way from side 1 track 1 through to side 2 track 3.
I’ve listened to this from time to time in the years since its release, often wishing it could be a bit more like ‘It’s my life’, ‘Dum Dum girl’ or my all-time favourite Talk Talk track ‘RenĂ©e’, but time can bring a greater appreciation of music that you just didn’t ‘get’ at the time and I’ve gradually grown to love and respect it.
One piece of advice before I go though – if you’re going to buy it, please make sure it’s not the cassette version.
And if, by chance, you find the whole thing just a little bit too pretentious, just remember that producer, co-writer and official/unofficial band member Tim Friese-Greene  produced ‘The lion sleeps tonight’ and ‘Fantasy Island’ for Tight Fit.
Label – Parlophone
Year - 1988