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The duo’s debut chimed nicely with their anti-rock stance and soon found its way into 500,000 homes. Tracks such as Each and Every One, Tender Blue and Crabwalk swooned jazzily, set alongside more mellow (conga-assisted) numbers such as The Spice of Life. Coming just as the likes of The Style Council were leaping all over anything un-rock, it offered a bit more depth than what was available elsewhere.
1985’s Love Not Money was a more indie proposition from its first cut onwards, the none-more-jangly When All’s Well. Sounding not unlike something Lloyd Cole and the Commotions or The Smiths might have made, it sounded a desire for EBTG to be heard above the bigger crowds they were beginning to play to.
1986’s Baby, the Stars Shine Bright saw them adopt a wall of sound atmosphere, triumphant orchestration making a bid for classic album status. Come on Home and Come Hell or High Water are two of many high points, and their songwriting shines throughout.
Idlewild (its tracklisting is to the left), originally released in 1988, rounds off this foursome of reissues. On it, things are stripped back to present a machine-pop-soul affair, with standouts including The Night I Heard Caruso Sing, Apron Strings and I Was Always Your Girl. Anyone who thought EBTG were just a couple of indie mopers will be proved mistaken: Idlewild features elements of Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis and possesses a minimal R&B feel. It really is quite marvellous.
These four albums represent essential listening for anyone interested in EBTG’s output ahead of their mega-selling Missing single of 1994, as their influence can be felt in the material of acts like Belle and Sebastian and The xx.
As a bonus, each album comes with a wealth of hand-picked extra tracks, featuring B sides, non-album singles and home-recorded demos, making these the complete picture of a band hitting a fantastic stride at a very early stage of its career.
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.. just a gem of an album! .. bears repeated listens! .. gorgeous! .. if it doesn't move you .. you must be dead! ..Published 3 months ago by David Cerinus
Being a fan of EBTG my comment can be a bit biased. However, the b-side and rarities included in the second CD is just amazing! I do recommend this product!Published on 6 Aug. 2012 by Daniel Teti
As a longtime EBTG fan , i have collected everything they 've done so far ( and Tracey solo jobs too ) . Read morePublished on 3 Jun. 2012 by Nassim El Andalouss
I'm no fan of their later dance-style, but this early work hits the spot for me. Tracey's voice is a treat to listen to, and the arrangements complement the songs perfectly. Read morePublished on 15 Mar. 2008 by Desk