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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dare: A Blueprint For Electronic Music
I can still remember the effect this album had on me when I first heard it way back in 1981. I would listen to it on headphones and marvel at every note of every layer. I had simply never heard anything like it before, and to be honest, it blew me away. In the early eighties, people were really beginning to tire of thrashing guitars that lacked melody and all that...
Published on 7 May 2002 by orac101

versus
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars For collectors only.
I bought this as I am a collector of the human league.
This is not a patch on the original black or white issues from 1981 which came in a card sleeve and a paper insert.
It seems a little cheap in its plastic sleeve with a credits sticker on the back.The image reproduction is ok but mine has some rippling on the white background, I also hate the black rim on...
Published 9 months ago by octopus


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5.0 out of 5 stars superb album, 13 Nov 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Dare (Audio CD)
nice to get this album on compact disc had it on lp years ago which slowly worn out! with scratches and hissing etc.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Human League, I Dare You, 27 July 2011
By 
Peter Karsten "Osiris" (Australia) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Dare (Audio CD)
The Human League have had many member changes over the years and after all this time are still together and performing with only Philip Oakey as the original recognised band member left along with Joanne Cathrall and Susan Ann Sulley to make the current group line-up.

The Human League has sold over 20 million records worldwide and as such have influenced many other electro-syntho-pop acts like Moby. The group has released nine studio albums since 1979, but there was one album above all the others that made their career, the one album they will always be remembered for, the one album that became the hallmark for all others to follow in regards to sound, influence and development, the one album that changed your perception of music forever.

Dare!

It was 1981 (a good year); this was the year where four albums were to help influence my musical tastes (there were others of course later on, but these four were a strong starting point) in the 1980's and beyond: 1] Duran Duran, 2] Time, 3] Dare! and 4] Tonwelle, Tonwelle is one of my personal top 10 albums of all-time. There are other albums and groups which I will not go into here; needless to say by 1981 my musical journey was well underway.

Let's continue, 1981-82, this was the Human League's most successful period in their musical history when they released their third album Dare! Under a new direction from veteran producer Martin Rushent the first single from the album was `The Sound of the Crowd', and reached number 12 in the UK charts. But that was just a taste of better things to come. The next single `Love Action (I Believe in Love)' went to number 3 in the UK charts, the first and second singles were released before the album Dare! and it was because of their success that the album was commissioned by Virgin at the time, to this end once the album was completed a third single was released `Open Your Heart' and did just as well.

Dare! was released in October of 1981 and headed to the top spot-number one in the United Kingdom, and stayed there for four weeks and remained in the charts for 77 weeks between 1981-82 giving the band their triple platinum status. Due to the success of the album a fourth (controversial*) single was released `Don't You Want Me' in December 1981 and went straight to number one; the single became the Human League's biggest hit with over 2 million copies sold worldwide. Dare! was also released in the US and the single `Don't You Want Me' also hit the number one spot in 1982.

* Virgin executive Simon Draper, wanted `Don't You Want Me' to be released as a fourth single but Philip Oakey was against it believing that the song was weak and it could damage the band's success of Dare! but Phil was overruled, and the rest as they say is history.

In 1982 the Human League received the Best British Newcomer award at the annual British Music awards and producer Martin Rushent also gained the Best Producer award for his involvement on Dare!

Now having said all that, let's look at the other songs on the album:

`Things That Dreams Are Made Of'

The electro-drum beat is unmistakable in this song (the band became notorious because they did not use a human drummer, but a computer (tape machine) to record and play synthesizer drum beats) as well as being a slow tempo tune; again we hear the classic almost sterile sound of the early electronic music which became part of the `Romantic Movement' sound (directly or indirectly in various forms according the individual band tastes) in the early 80s.

`Darkness'

An ambient almost Gregorian sound at the beginning of this song with Phil's voice giving an added surreal chant; this song is probable the darkest of all the songs on the album, again we can see how versatile this album is in sound and composition.

`Do Or Die'

This song seems to reflect an anti-government/society, anti-social/system type of awareness on a personal level as an individual, I maybe wrong but that's the impression I get when listening to it. Good musical mid-break within the song which could have developed as an added instrumental to the album all on its own.

`Get Carter'

A simple electro-introduction instrumental to the next song. (Could the title be a reference to the movie and to Michael Cain's character?)

`I Am the Law'

A slow song with Phil's unmistakable voice sounding on occasion lower to reflect a deeper meaning about authority's darker (seedy) side (cover-ups), which is appropriate as this song blends into the next.

`Seconds'

As with the above explanation we see how the law (authority) deals with world events such as the assassination of President John F. Kennedy as this song implies. On a subconscious level the distinctive singular repetitive electro-drum beat throughout the song reflecting the bullet sound as it is fired over and over again to enforce the gun shot (or shots) taken on that day in 1963.

All in all this album was ahead of its time, perhaps that's why it was unique and bold in concept, so totally different which is why, Dare! was a hit for the Human League. The album may seem dated now in regards to its music, but one must remember in 1981-82 it was avant-garde in its musical presentation and innovation; that is why, Dare! is considered a classic album, and why the serious collector has a copy in their collection.

The album itself seems to be a mix of many emotions I feel, and one needs to peel back the layers to understand the true meaning the group are trying to express, in events and or situations, possibly about themselves, their experiences or their thoughts of the moment.

On reflection the Human League were to never again have success with any of their future albums of the magnitude of Dare! Over the years they have had a flourishing musical career, but never to the scale during 1981-82, their best period in music as a group. That said the Human League is still around and performing if not for themselves but for the benefit of their fans-who wish to remember a better time when things in the world were so uncomplicated.

Special thanks to Wikipedia for additional information for compiling this review.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Masterpeace from 1981, 21 May 2011
This review is from: Dare (Audio CD)
Dare was the third studio album from this British synthpop band and first released in the UK in 1981, then subsequently in the U.S. in1982. Dare became critically acclaimed and has proved to be a genre-defining album, whose influence can be heard in many areas of contemporary music today. This is one of my all time favourite albums; if only the Human League's other albums could have been as good. A masterpeace
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5.0 out of 5 stars timeless genious, 3 Feb 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Dare (Audio CD)
had this in the 80s on record. had to get it again. on a 3k hifi it sounds awesome and sounds like it was recorded yesterday. BUY IT.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 100% Perfect Pop, 17 Dec 2004
This review is from: Dare (Audio CD)
This is without doubt one of the greatest pop records of all time. Pure perfection from the first second to the last second. If you are a fan of popular music you ought to have this in your collection.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Album, 10 Dec 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Dare! (Audio CD)
We all know that this album is nearly 20 years old but the case is, an excellent album never dates. I wasn't even alive when this album was released but after hearing some of their songs I knew that this was one I had to have. Some of the songs on the album are very well known ( don't you want me, Love Action( I believe in Love) and others are less well known but all in all BUY THIS ALBUM
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor quality vinyl pressing, 24 Oct 2013
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This review is from: Dare! [VINYL] (Vinyl)
I agree with the previous reviewer. There is a manufacturing fault that means that there are smudges on the vinyl (they look like scuffs but aren't). You can even see one on the Amazon picture! It also plays at 45rpm rather than 33rpm for some reason. I've returned mine for a refund.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars For collectors only., 22 Oct 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Dare! [VINYL] (Vinyl)
I bought this as I am a collector of the human league.
This is not a patch on the original black or white issues from 1981 which came in a card sleeve and a paper insert.
It seems a little cheap in its plastic sleeve with a credits sticker on the back.The image reproduction is ok but mine has some rippling on the white background, I also hate the black rim on the disc edge.
It could have been so much more and for the money it's nothing special.I have no idea what it sounds like as I won't be opening it.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars in my opinion the best album ever made, 19 Dec 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Dare! (Audio CD)
The opening track was never released as a single but would of easily shot to number one.The majority of the other singles were massive hits which could be re released today and do well.Simply years ahead of there time.
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7 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars not 5.1, why?, 17 May 2005
By 
This review is from: Dare (Audio CD)
this is a classic album reproduced to sacd, why, oh why, did'nt they mix it to 5.1. you'd be etter of with the normal cd
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Dare!
Dare! by Human League (Audio CD - 1983)
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