Galore - The Best of Kirsty MacColl
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Galore is a collection of cuts from MacColl's fine first solo album, Kite, and its patchy successor, Electric Landlady, filled out with earlier singles, duets and collaborations. It's no less than MacColl deserves, on balance--though employed to the point of ubiquity as a backing vocalist, she has struck out under her own name relatively rarely. The duets include two with The Pogues ("Fairytale Of New York" and "Miss Otis Regrets") and one with Evan Dando of The Lemonheads (a cover of Lou Reed's "Perfect Day"). There are a few judicious cover versions (The Smiths' "You Just Haven't Earned It Yet Baby" and Billy Bragg's "A New England", which contains an extra verse Bragg wrote for her). Her otherwise unobtainable early singles are also neatly rounded up ("They Don't Know", "He's On The Beach", "There's A Guy Works Down The Chip Shop Swears He's Elvis"). --Andrew Mueller
Top Customer Reviews
Most of the songs on this collection were written by Kirsty, often but not always on her own, including They don't know (a song which provided Tracey Ullman with her first hit), There's a guy works down the chip shop swears he's Elvis, He's on the beach, Free world, Don't come the cowboy with me Sonny Jim (a song covered by Kelly Willis on her Easy album) and Walking down Madison.
Kirsty was also well capable of recording distinctive covers of other people's songs. Their diverse sources show that Kirsty was not a lady that anybody could typecast. They include A new England (Billy Bragg), Miss Otis Regrets (Cole Porter - one of two duets with Irish rockers The Pogues), You just haven't earned it yet baby (The Smiths), Days (The Kinks) and Perfect Day (Lou Reed - a duet with Evan Dando of the Lemonheads).
Her biggest UK hit was the other duet with the Pogues - a Christmas song titled Fairytale of New York. It can be found on several British Christmas compilations and is not really typical of Kirsty's music. I would describe Kirsty's music as sixties pop rock updated for the eighties with a little folk and country added into the mix.
If Kirsty had pursued her career with single-minded dedication, some say she could have been a world megastar. Maybe, but she wanted a life outside music. As a consequence, her musical legacy is limited, but the quality more than makes up for that.
If you've never listened to Kirsty MacColl before and are curious to find out what myself and the other reviewers are on about, then get hold of this fab album NOW !!
This brilliant album showcases her considerable talent as composer and singer. Besides the aforementioned highlights, it includes a stirring version of Lou Reed's Perfect Day, her own version of They Don't Know and the poignant Don't Come The Cowboy with Me Sonny Jim. Kirsty had a distinctive voice with a natural country flavour, very special and recognizable. Other great tracks on Galore include Miss Otis Regrets, You Just Haven't Earned It Yet Baby, Caroline and Angel. Galore is the best album for exploring this obscure but highly talented singer, although her solo albums like Kite and Electric Landlady should not be neglected.
But there is nothing marginal about her recordings as this compilation shows convincingly. From the girlgroup pastiche of 'They Don't Know' through the country flavoured 'There's A Guy Works Down The Chipshop Swears He's Elvis' to the political edge of 'Free World' the latin tinged 'My Affair' and the urban groove of 'Walking Down Madison' (co-written with Johnny Marr) her songwriting shows a remarkable quality and variety. All of these are bathed in her trademark harmonies making the listening experience particularly delightful.
She cut a mean cover too. 'New England' is easily as good as the original, though very different in tone. Her version of the Kinks 'Days' is simply stunning, and Cole Porter's 'Miss Otis Regrets' is delivered with great wit. She duets with Shane McGowan on his 'Fairytale Of New York' thereby creating that rarity, a listenable Christmas song.
The selection of tracks for this album is unimpeachable. With this and her later 'Tropical Brainstorm' you will have the essential Kirsty McColl.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of the best cd's in my collection. entertaining upbeat songsPublished 3 months ago by Amazon Customer