None of the alternate versions of album tracks are particularly successful and only really show how great the final versions are. The live versions of Neat, Neat, Neat and Roadette Song are poorly recorded and hardly essential performances, despite the historical interest.
Added to this, the bonus disc is only 36 minutes long, so the whole thing could have put on one CD!
This is particularly irritating as the album sounds great and the booklet is immaculate, with excellent liner notes and all the lyrics.
If you've never heard this album, I'd strongly recommend it, especially if you're feeling particuarly irritable today. If you're looking to replace your Demon reissue, proceed with caution... but you know you're going to buy it anyway.
This Years Model bursts into life with "No Action" and the opening lines, "I don't wanna kiss you, I don't wanna touch, I don't wanna see you, 'cause I don't miss you that much"... well that told her then! Don't expect sweet love songs here. He may look like a wimp, he may even act like a wimp, but this is one guy whose emotions you don't want to play with.
The first seven songs were the original side 1, and they move along at break-neck speed, not letting up for a minute, and include "Pump it Up" which was released as a single, and the rocker "You Belong to Me", which ends very much as the first song began "No, I don't want anybody saying, You belong to me....".
If we were expecting hinm to calm down a bit on the remainder of the disk, we now learn that he's barely started! "Hand in Hand", track 8, the first song on the original side 2, lays down his intentions with the opening lines, "No don't ask me to apologise, I won't ask you to forgive me, If I'm gonna go down, You're gonna come with me". And so it goes on, next up, "(I don't want to go to) Chelsea", the big hit single from the album, followed by "Lip Service", "Living in Paradise" ("...and already you're looking for another fool like me...") and at last, the song it's all been building up to, the awesome "Lipstick Vogue".
He's not just spitting now, he's spitting blood as he cries out "Sometimes I think that love is just a tumour, you've got to cut out" and later "You say your sorry for the things that you've done, you say you're sorry but you know you don't mean it, I wouldn't worry I had so much fun, Sometimes I almost feel just like a human being" or even "You wanna throw me away but Im not broken, You got a lot to say but I'm not joking, There are some words they don't allow to be spoken". The orignal album ends with "Night Rally", or "Radio, Radio" if you bought the US version, and both are here, bringing the first disk to a close. The great thing about these songs is that everytime you listen to them, even 30 years later they hit you in the face like a bucket of ice water, timeless songs, the loser in love fighting back.
I was delighted with the bonus disk, which carries on the anger of the first. There are excellent, different versions of "You belong to me", "Radio, Radio", "This Years Girl" and "Chelsea", as well as demo versions of songs that were to appear on later albums "Greenshirt" and "Big Boys" (with the classic line "Worrying about you physical fitness, Tell me how you got this sickness"), but the highlight of the bonus disk is the acoustic "Running Out of Angels".
A wonderful re-release, re-master, call it what you like, this is one of the great albums, which you must have in your collection.
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