on 20 March 2014
OK, so CD's don't have 2 sides I know, but the point of the heading is that the first 5 tracks of this (the band's 2nd outing) are quite outstanding, after that it is a little weak for me.
IML marked a major turning point musically for TT. After the New Romantic leanings of TPO (albeit a stronger set of songs than any of their peers at the time, Japan excepted), IML showcased the great musicianship of the band & their reluctance to produce 'plastic' pop chart fodder. Mark Hollis recruited keyboard player & writer Tim Friese-Greene to the band & this allowed TT to fully explore their musical toy box & create soundscapes that would, frankly have not been out of place on Bowie album. Hollis' lyrics always hint at the darker side of human nature & the relationships that define our personalities. His 'clipped' vocal delivery & at times vaguely indistinct murmurings can get frustrating at times, but really suit the world weary, deep feeling in his voice.
The songs portray a man who has never really 'fitted in' with society at large & bemoans the lost chances & mistakes made along the way (Dum Dum Girl, Such a Shame). There is pain & anguish here the beautiful Renee & clever down beat electro-pop Tomorrow Started), but also defiance (the title track) that ultimately he will get what he wants even though the belief in this outcome sounds hollow & more in hope than expectation.
IML represents a giant leap in terms of production & sound from TPO, but the songs are a nice continuation as well as improvement from those on their debut. As I mentioned at the beginning the first half of the recording is by far the best, the remaining tracks could almost be left-overs from TPO sessions reworked, but no matter.
IML still ranks as one of the best early/mid 80's releases & provided a springboard for even greater material to come.
Enjoy. This is quality music from a band approaching the height of their powers.