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Audio CD, Double CD, Original recording reissued, 21 Apr 2017
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Daring to change people's attitude towards Antipodean rock in the mid-eighties, The Triffids' music lives on. This is a testament to a unique group. All formats of this reissue feature nine bonus tracks, including B sides and demos. Initial orders of the CD will include a 42 page 'perfect bound' booklet within a slipcase, similar in style to the Pavement reissue of Crooked Rain. The booklet documents for the first time the ideas and inspirations behind the creation and recording of this classic 80s indie album.
Top customer reviews
Im in the pub , had a Few ,
buying a couple of CD's on Amazon .
Just had to check out the reviews of my favourite album of all time .
Everyone who loves music , should own this masterpiece .
I will admit to being 51 years of age, before I probably come across as a boaster.
The next statement , (boast) , is purely intended to do You a favour.
Haha...now I guess I am an arrogant boaster. Sorry...
I absolutely don't possess the eloquence required to describe the beauty ,
of David McCombs voice ... or the wonder of his compositions.
I have well over 3,000 albums
This is my favourite album of All time !!!!
BUY IT .
What is in no doubt what so ever is the brilliance of the Calenture album itself? Calenture is defined on the albums cover as a "tropical delirium that afflicts sailors who imagine the sea to be green fields "and is a fitting title for music as lush and transcendental as this. Beautifully produced by Gil Norton and sung with admirable poise and gusto by the late great David McComb this is an inspirational set of songs saturated with opulent romanticism and defiant melancholy.
The songs are mini-epics, awash with strings, augmented by pedal steel, melodic guitar phrases and plunging bass lines. Opener "Bury Me Deep In Love" was used for Harold and Madges wedding in "Neighbours" which is hardly a fair reflection of it's casual magnificence though top marks for taste to who ever chose it. Lyrically it sees McComb at his peak. On "Trick Of The Light" he tells us "The rim of her mouth was golden /her eyes were just desert sands" to a gorgeous tippling melody. "Hometown Farewell Kiss" kicks in with a cascade of pedal steel and keyboards before McComb intones resplendently "My eyes are filled with light /my feet can't touch the ground/from up here I can the sight/of my home town city burning down ". "Kellys Blues" opens with wonderful; chiming Appalachian guitars and flexes brawny bass lines. The orchestra comes more to the fore on the splendid "Blinder by the Hour" where his "Lips for food/my skin for sheets/my eyes for and my blood for heat /my two white arms for an overcoat" lyric is amongst the best love song lyrics I've ever heard.
The tone turns darker for "Jerdacuttup Man", a lamentation for an unfortunate soul who "Once lost in business/once lost in love" , was mummified and buried and now lies "Under glass in the British Museum "Jill Birt takes the lead for the joyous swagger of "Holy Water" and "Vagabond Holes" is a more muscular straight up rock track. "Open For You" is another plangent attractively performed number with Jill Birts backing vocals more to the fore .The one slightly ponderous song on the album is "Unmade Love" with its slightly stilted bass motif but finally there is the truly sublime "Save What You Can" about two lovers parting at New Year and it is almost unceasingly moving with an exquisite piano melody.
Where BSD seemed obsessed with the wide screen landscape of their native Australia Calenture seems more pre-occupied with the wide screen scope of the heart, the trials and tribulations that we go through in the name of that rather over used four letter word. It may not introduce us to a new pop vision or break any new ground but as a straight up rock/pop album you will not find better. Originally released in1987 its one of that decades outstanding albums. Buy it and bury yourself deep in loves enveloping vale and wallow.
I love all the songs here, I'd say this is as definitive as fan's fave 'Born Sandy Devotional' - any bland period detail is levelled by the wonder these songs evoke. I love all the songs here, especially 'Hometown Farewell Kiss' and 'Save What You Can', two songs that I can listen to over and over, until the end of time. 'Hometown Farewell Kiss' has one of the greatest choruses in history, but it was of no concern to the masses at the time. That aching steel-guitar set to David McComb's gorgeously aching vocals and those words, those poetic words you can live in and watch them burn, let the flames grow higher. "My eyes are filled with light/my feet can't touch the ground/From here I can see the sights of my hometown city burning down/Now it blazes for me house by house/& my legs buckle under me/I don't mind I sing an old song of joy/For I know why and why it had to be..." - which says it all. Invoke a gorgeous apocalypse in the chorus-form...
'Kelly's Blues' following its spoken-word intro from Jill Birt drifts off into a sound like Microdisney doing the Bunnymen or The Cure. I think 'Calenture' fits better with the third and fourth Bunnymen albums than the Bunnymen's rubbish 5th record - though David McComb's vocals will probably remind many of their fantastic peers The Go-Betweens. 'Jerdacuttup Man' is a darker moment, reminding me a little of Tom Waits in the intro, while a song like several here and on other Triffids-albums that demonstrate the Triffids have been of influence. I certainly thought a few tracks on last year's over-rated album of the year 'Funeral' by the Arcade Fire owed a debt to this band...
The opener 'Bury Me Deep in Love' was meant to be their 'Suddenly', but sadly it wasn't...which is probably just as well. It's too sublime to be associated with the silly TV programme 'Neighbours' (Madge & Harold's wedding...don't ask. Though I loved the magic mushroom episode with Jim Robinson going all Butthole Surfers!!)You wouldn't get Scott Walker songs in 'Hollyoaks', and Walker is a comparison here - like Microdisney's 'Mrs Simpson' & The Go-Betweens' 'The Wrong Road', this is a song worthy of his reach. The strings are as sublime as those on the last Smiths album too. & have I mentioned the divine 'Blinder by the Hour', which like closing track 'Save What You Can' is a bruised piano-lead joy - so very happy-sad. The kind of romantic wanderlust that Tindersticks and Jack and The Go-Betweens and The Blue Nile and even The World Party have. Just listen to 'Save What You Can' and if you don't need this album then...
'Calenture' has always been a great album that I discovered too late in the 1990s, but is even more necessary in this deluxe reissue. It deserves more than the usual cult audience, it's too good for so few - I hope once the Triffids' back-catalogue is reissued, David McComb's solo albums & the work of Black-eyed Susans get similar treatments. These are songs to live by, and songs that capture the tricky thing called life, the common response - How could you live without it? What would that be like?
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