I always felt that this album was China Crisis’ least accessible, partly because of the lack of instrumental hooks that graced their other albums and a religious vibe in the lyrics, which can be alienating for a non-religious listener.
However, for a fan, this is a great package and really interesting to compare different productions. The Walter Becker Becker productions of the singles are clear, crisp and unfussy, with that laid-back Steely Dan vibe, and I much prefer them.
The demo versions of the album tracks are also really good – check out the “Stranger by Nature” demo which is totally different from the original, and would have worked well on ‘Flaunt the Imperfection’. I never really took to the more heavyweight Mike Thorne singles productions, but here they are, along with the 12” mixes.
Look forward to collectors editions of the other CC albums, and their (gasp) long-awaited new album!