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Suzanne Vega

4.7 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (23 Feb. 1993)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Uni/a&M
  • ASIN: B000002GGY
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 375,154 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
  • Sample this album Artist (Sample)
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Product Description

Amazon.co.uk

Though not the songs that would put her on the pop music map--that would come with 1987's Solitude Standing--Vega's first album shows her folky songwriting origins and, song for song, may still be her best. Produced by Patti Smith guitarist Lenny Kaye, the sound is softly sculpted by Kaye's silvery guitar and an airy, occaisonal string section, matching the dream-like introspection of "Queen and the Soldier" and the surreal word play of "Small Blue Thing." Vega's philosophical, quiet, but confident approach would open the door for a second generation of female singer-songwriters like Dar Williams and Shawn Colvin. Her debut remains an unassuming sleeper for one of the '80s best folk or pop albums. --Roy Francis Kasten

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By Martin Turner HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 6 Feb. 2004
Format: Audio CD
This was an extraordinary debut album which is as crisp and fresh today as when I first heard it in 1985. This album is a collection of glimpses of stories — some almost narrated, some barely hinted at. But all tantalisingly brief.
Marlene on the Wall is the song that brought this album to the UK public's attention, but the song that riveted me was 'The Queen and the Soldier' on what was then Side 2. It's a haunting almost fairy tale which ends — well, buy the album and find out how it ends. From there I had to go back to Some Journey, which is like a brief scene from a Russian novel, or maybe a half chapter of Michael Strogoff.
Suzanne Vega had already mastered the art of shifting perspective in this album. Knight Moves takes us very close in, right to the moment, while Small Blue Thing is like seeing the song from a great height.
The guitar work is masterful, and eminently playable for those willing to take the trouble to learn it.
Someone once suggested to me that Suzanne Vega's first album was her best, the second her second best, the third her third best, and so on. I don't agree with him, because I think that she develops in different musical directions. But I can see what he meant - in terms of what it is, this album is perfect. Vega was wise not to try to do the same thing again with her second.
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Format: Audio CD
Suzanne Vega's eponymous debut album put her fimly in the public's mind with Tracey Chapman and Michelle Shocked. A latter-day Joni Mitchell her gentle introspective songs were never finer than on "Cracking" or "Undertow". The exquisite "Small Blue Thing" had a whole bedsit generation curled up in sympathy and the top twenty single "Marlene on the Wall" struck a chord with everyone (male or female) who'd done something they regretted the morning after! "The Queen and the Soldier" clearly demonstrates her folk roots but manages to remain just the right side of twee. This is a perfect album, ideal for chilling in the bath, on the sofa, or even the tube.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This was Suzanne's first offering she followed this up with "Solitude Standing" Best track on that was "Luka".

On this we have her Albatross "Marlene On the Wall" A song I can never tire of listening to, the other outstanding track is "Small Blue Thing" if memory serves the Vinyl "Live" version of this track is better but still this is song writing in it's finest art form.

Her later work I found disappointing, so for a newcomer this is best, I liken Suzanne to Ricky Lee Jones,who's first album was mustard
but everything else was definitely also ran, this is for me is the thing they both share, but to be objective it's always hard to follow that first flush of success.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Finally I played this first album in HiFi mod with joy . I've expect many years !
The original tape, (we know) is bad registered (too high and lacks of bass frequency).
This remastered version isn't correct too, the sound frequencies are shifted to the treble too.
Probably as was recorded on the disc can not be changed, but is better anyway : the volume level is a bit higher and it's a goog thinks. the drums are fuller, less compressed sounding, the acoustic guitar is outstanding.
All is more natural and vivid and the noise of the recording is contained.
finally sorry for my english (I was born in italy).
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I bought this album soon after hearing "Marlene On The Wall" on the radio; I was not disappointed then or now. It has been said that good music will stand the test of time, for me this album is proof of that. Easy and enjoyable to listen to with enough interest to draw you back time after time. If you are unfamiliar with this album, do yourself a favour, get acquainted
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Format: Audio CD
I agree with many of the reviews. This debut album by Suzanne Vega is excellent and worthy of at least 4 stars, possibly 5. Back in 1985, music was drifting into the horrible 80s dross, particularly in the UK. What a relief when Suzanne Vega arrived with some hope.

Marlene On The Wall was a good well-deserved hit in the UK and I was one of the gang that went on to buy the album off the back of hearing the single. Cracking and "Small Blue Thing" are outstanding. "Freeze Tag" is sublime and wonderful. "Marlene On The Wall" was the acid test until Solitude Standing album arrived.

I have to say however, that "The Queen and The Soldier" The Queen And The Soldier is really the very best track on this album.

So nothing further to say except I am pleased to say the album has crossed to CD extremely well.

In passing can I put in a word for "(I'll Never Be) Your Maggie May" - ok it came years later but when reviewing Suzanne Vega at her best, for me this song is up there with "
...Read more ›
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Format: Audio CD
If you only ever intend to get just one Suzanne Vega studio album then be sure to make it is this one ! There are ten songs in total and none of these songs could be considered to be a weak link in any way .The main musical elements here consist of Suzanne's voice and her acoustic guitar being augmented in a considered and complimentary fashion by keyboards ,electric guitar, bass and drums . I have fond memories of seeing her perform live on two different occasions in the '80's and both times she played the entirety of this debut album plus 'Tom's Diner' and 'Luka' .After this album her sound changed and her work began to be more 'produced' and commercial .Here the songs are produced sympathetically and are therefore allowed to breath and shine as they should .

The whole album holds together in a very well rounded and cohesive way and has proved to be a piece of work that has definitely stood the test of time. It is quite difficult to pick favourites (because they are all so excellent ) but suffice to say that it speaks volumes for the strength of the songs that 'Marlene on the Wall' is in equally good company !
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