This is a new Analogue Fellowship feature by resident writer and music lover JK. He revisits lovers and records, great or otherwise, from back then. For those who are just discovering these gems now, Analogue Fellowship would like to say “Enjoy…” and “You’re welcome!”
Everything But The Girl – Eden (UK release)
Release date: 4th June 1984
Label: Blanco Y Negro
Catalogue No: BYN-2
I stumbled onto ‘Everything But The Girl’ one summer day in 1984 during one of my frequent visits to my neighborhood record store (Sound Warehouse, I think…). I made frequent visits because
a) I love to browse through the vinyl records and
b) I was smitten by a girl working there by the name of Monique.
Monique tossed me a promo record and said I might like it. She said it was given by the record label to the store, but she doubts it would sell. She also said I can keep it. No charge.
Everything But The Girl – Self titled (US release)
Release date: Summer 1984
Label: Sire Records
Catalog No: 1-25212
This US release version was my introduction to Tracey Thorn and Ben Watt of Hull, England. With a name like ‘Everything But The Girl’, it sounded strange but promising at the same time.
The American version of EBTG’s debut album in 1984 has different tracks and it also contains two UK singles and four B-sides. The magic of this album is on those non-UK album tracks.
I fell in love with Tracey Thorn almost instantly when I heard the album. Well, it was actually with her voice I fell in love with as she and Ben Watt were already an item. And a songwriting team.
Musically, the album was a little messy and confusing at first. It was like they were looking for a suitable style and have yet to agree on one. There’s this mix of lounge and bossa nova with some jangle pop and smokey, laid back jazz thrown in. However, her voice stood above everything else. She was intimate, coy, hurting, inviting and longing- all in the space of one single song.
It was six years later that I managed to get the UK release ‘Eden’ from a friend who brought it back from London. Apart from the different tracks and very different album cover, there was another surprise.
There, on track number 5, was the beautiful and exquisite song ‘The Spice of Life’ that was hidden from me all these years. Suffice to say I couldn’t help myself but fall in love all over again with Tracey…
EBTG have gone on to greater things and released many more albums since. They even had a change of direction in 1996, releasing an electronic dance album called ‘Walking Wounded’.
However, on that fateful summer’s day in 1984, I chose Tracey over Monique and never regretted the decision.