Themes From Great Cities

It might have come to your attention that I'm not a regular poster of love and understanding, which you will just have to get used to. I will however, have bursts of creativity where I move completely randomly from post to post with no rhyme or reason. I have recently posted a few singles (7 & 12”) and the odd bootleg which have been received very well by all who visit. More of the same will continue as you, dear readers, seem to be enjoying them.

Some of the rips are my own, but many more are from other blogs and I’m just sharing the wealth. If other bloggers out there wish to share the rips from my posts, please as I do, host them yourself. To combat this, the FLAC files that are over 6 months old will be replaced with MP3 files.

Finally I am happy to re-up old posts where the link has expired. Please comment in the relevant posts comments box.

Friday

In The Garden



Eurythmics' debut album, In the Garden, is the missing link between the work of the Tourists, who included both Dave Stewart and Annie Lennox, and 1983's commercial breakthrough, Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This). Co-produced by Kraftwerk producer Conny Plank at his studio in Germany, it has some of the distant, mechanistic feel of the European electronic music movement, but less of the pop sensibility of later Eurythmics. The chief difference is in Lennox's singing; even when the musical bed is appealing, Lennox floats ethereally over it, and the listener doesn't focus on her. As a result, In the Garden wasn't much of a success, though when Eurythmics streamlined their sound and emphasized Lennox's dominating voice on subsequent releases, they found mass popularity.


In a nutshell, In The Garden is a hidden gem. I say “hidden” because initially, even though the band was signed to RCA, the record was only available in the US as an import. Recorded at Conny Plank’s studio in Cologne, in Germany, in 1981. In The Garden belies its humble origins and stands the test of time, more than anything simply because it comes from the heart. Produced by Plank himself (who’d produced Devo and Kraftwerk) and featuring Blondie’s Clem Burke on drums and Can’s Holgar Czukey on (amongst other things) “Thai stringed instruments and French horn”, the record could have very easily kicked off the electro-clash movement; if historians hadn’t seen fit to slot in this particular episode a decade or so later.
Clem’s recruitment came about because Dave and Annie saw him in a club and Annie persuaded Dave to go up to him and ask him if he wanted to join. And Holgar? Well, “Holgar was always around at Conny’s and Conny himself was always so stimulating and interesting and Holgar just happened to be too. As well as being extremely eccentric and great fun to play with.” Holgar, of course, had been Stockhausen’s star pupil and Stockhausen’s son, Marcus, ended up playing brass on In The Garden. You can tell the Blondie influences on, in particular, Your Time Will Come, but whether this is anything to do with Clem or Annie’s personal fascination with Debbie Harry is a moot point. For Annie, Blondie was “the ultimate pop band” although for others this is something that Eurythmics were soon to become themselves.
Listening to In The Garden now, some three and a half decades after its release, is to be transported back to an era when electronic artists like Depeche Mode and Human League and even David Bowie ruled the airwaves. There are other influences too: Dave’s guitar work is reminiscent of both Chameleons and Magazine and the track Take Me To Your Heart is all lost-future, contemporaneous Kraftwek. Another track, namely She’s Invisible Now, is almost defiantly no wave (if you remember that, you really have been paying attention) with more than a nod to Marbles’ nature of the song is no more-or-less offset by the “10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1″ countdown which gives an even more recognizable nod to Bowie’s Space Oddity. Moreover, as if to prove her European credentials, Annie sings in French on Sing Sing and of revenge on, ahem, Revenge a theme that Eurythmics would return to on a later record.
Ultimately, of course, In The Garden is the tale of Eurythmics taking flight for the first time, of Dave and Annie striding out into the world as equals, as one and of them letting their hair down after the trials and tribulations of The Tourists. It has innocence and beauty and is probably unlike every other Eurythmics record you will ever hear. For some Eurythmics’ aficionados it is their favourite record. And for others, quite soon, it may become theirs too.


Ripped from the 2005 CD Re-master to MP3 @ 320kbps

Eurythmics; In The Garden

1.     English Summer
2.     Belinda
3.     Take Me To Your Heart
4.     She’s Invisible Now
5.     Your Time Will Come
6.     Caveman Head
7.     Never Gonna Cry Again
8.     All The Young (People Of Today)
9.     Sing-Sing
10.Revenge
11.Le Sinestre [B’side Never Gonna Cry Again]
12.Heartbeat Heartbeat [B’side Belinda]
13.Never Gonna Cry Again (Live)
14.4/4 In Leather (Live)
15.Take Me To Your Heart (Live)


 

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