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As I listen to this album I am amazed to think that it's been about 18 years or so since I was first introduced to this group and this album. I can remember it so vividly my son was just born and I loved this album. It was on my frequent play list. The first time I heard this album it was on a horrible home made recording. From that point on I was on my way to find a new cassette. Yes Cassette that's what we had then and CD's were so expensive at that time that I chose the cassette. Since then I have replaced the cassette with a cd and it's actually like the third time I have bought this cd. I seem to be very hard on them.
The first time I ever heard this group it was from my friend Sarah. We were driving around town looking for something to do when she said to me you have to got to listen to this group. I made a copy off my brother's copy. So in she pops the tape and we sit in her car waiting for it to start playing. The song that she wanted me to listen to was The Woman in The Wall. I was not sure of how I would feel about this song. She really told me nothing about it but I have to say that after listening to it I was forever a huge fan.
The album is not really a super album but in my opinion it does have some great songs. For me an album is good when there are more than 5 songs that I like on it. Well this one is a great album to me as there are 8 songs that I really enjoy and the others are not that bad. Not my favorite but I can still sing along to them.
Now that you know I love this album and I love this group. Still sad that they are no longer together but glad that you can still get there albums. I want to tell you about all the songs on this album.
1. Song For Who Ever
I love this song. It's kind of silly and care free it's to a girl but the singer can not remember her name. He wrote and amazing song and has made so much money but he can't remember her name to give her credit. I love this song as it has a slow beat and is very easy to get into. Great first song on the album
2. Have You Ever Been Away
This is one of the songs that I really enjoy listening to. It's got a great beat and it's very simple to sing along to.
3. From Under The Covers
Every time I hear this song it makes me laugh. This is another song that I like on the album. Very easy to sing along too.
4. I'll Sail This Ship Alone
This song is rather sad but still a great song. This song is about if some one else is chosen instead of him. If that's the case then he will just have to carry on the best he can and sail this ship alone. This is a very good song.
The first time I heard this song I was very shocked to learn that they were the original artists of this song as there is an American band that has also released the same song. I have to say that sadly I am not fond of either version of this song. I was glad to learn that The Beautiful South released this song first.
6. Straight In At 37
I have to say that this is not one of my favorite songs either. Now that I have the CD I usually skip this song. Not a song that I am fond of.
7. You Keep It All In
I really like this song. It's easy to sing along with and really has a great beat. I like that this song has a message that goes along with it. If you keep it all in that will only make it all worse. You really need to talk about your problems.
8. Woman In The Wall
Being a huge fan of Edgar Allan Poe I have to say that out of all of the songs on this album this is my favorite. This is a song about a guy that kills his girlfriend and then makes a grave out of Hoover bags and knitting needles for her as he buried her in his wall. Every thing is fine that is until the body begins to stink and the wall begins to break. For me it's really just like the tell tale heart in the aspect that the even though they are dead and buried it may still come back to haunt you.
9. Oh Blackpool
I have to say that this song is pretty decent however there is a part where a horn blows very loudly that really drives me nuts. I like the song but not the intro.
10. Love Is
I have to say that I am not a big fan of this song as it's too slow to make me happy. I am sure that it's a good song just not what I look for in a song.
11. I Love You (But Your Boring)
I like this song as well. It has a great title and it makes me laugh when I listen to it.
All in all I would have to say that I really enjoy this album. It has everything that a good album needs. More songs that I like and fewer songs that I don't like. So for me that makes this a great album.
The Beautiful South is one of my favourite bands and this album has some shining examples of what the band does best.
One of my other favourite bands is The Kinks and, while they differ in terms of how they sound there is one shared trait: the ability to tell a story.
The first track is very humorous, about a songwriter exploiting his lovers and great characters are created such as in 'Have You Ever Been Away?' and 'From Under the Covers'.
The Beautiful South are not afraid to touch upon the darker matters of everyday life, including suicide in 'I'll Sail This Ship Alone' and domestic violence in 'Woman In The Wall'. However, the way that they do this is always with a charming melody and perhaps makes the effect even greater. We also see parody in 'Straight In At 37'.
Overall, the band has managed a good mix of upbeat and downbeat songs, each with a meaning, and has conveyed a strong collection of life experience.
Well this was the first album from the Beautiful South and it still holds it head up high as probably the very best one! It includes the hit songs Song for Whoever, You Keep It All In and I'll Sail This Ship Alone, all great songs that are moving, passionate with great vocals and backing. Great lesser known songs are the slightly dark Woman in The Wall (which is one of favourite of all their songs), and Have You Ever Been away. Definitely an album for anyone who likes the BS, but not for those who vaguely like only the hits they've had.
The first album by what have become such a big band. It is not my favourite album But it does have my favourite cover, the sex reference is so obvious and so funny, the gun firing in the mouth, the cigarette, it is pure genius and pure Beautiful South. This is not a stand out album, a very good album but 1989 was the begining and I suspect and judging by 0898 it was a little while before TBS found their feet, some tracks on here show their potentional and what was to follow others sound like bad 80's left overs from A Simply Red Album. But the good tracks, boy they are good and worth buying the album for. 'Song For Whoever', the classic south song, the album version with an extra stanza on the end, it really brings the song to life, a must have song and the most clever anti love song ever written. 'I'll Sail this Ship Alone', yeah maybe we will, but its a heart rendering story that yet again we all relate to, great ending line, great way to end a song. 'You Keep it All In', class song 'nuff said. 'Love Is..' can appear clumsy but is in fact a very stunning piece, complete with various amusing lines and sarcasm, one of my all time favourite tracks and finally 'I Love You (But you're so Boring)' The band appently hate the song, I love it, i think it is beautiful and ever so slighlty dark, great lyrics again. Those above tracks alone make this a worthwhile buy and the fact you are not likely to pay full price for this album means it is a must buy. some people love 'Woman in the Wall' and 'From under the Covers', i think they are good, for me I just think they are not the stand out tracks. A piece of music history that is worth owning.
The Beautiful South's first album, and 50 minutes worth of memorable music. Interestingly Woolworths complained about the cover of this album, saying it might encourage children to shoot themselves or start smoking. Personally, I disagree but there you go. The cover is, according to the Band, a way of saying that there are many ways to die, shooting yourself (which is quick) or smoking (which kills you slowly). Kind of dramatic but it has nothing to do with the content of the album itself. The brilliant album opens with the full 6 minute version of "Song for Whoever". This is a brilliant track, Paul Heaton's voice, backed up with Dave's and the rest of the band, make this ballad one you will never tire of. That doesn't mean it is a traditional lovesong however. One of the beauties of the Beautiful South is that their songs rarely fall into a category. This one is about a guy who uses women as inspiration for his songs. If you ever go to a Beautiful South concert (and I really recommend you do) then you will notice that the audience sings along to the chorus of this song, once you know it it's difficult not to! This is not the same version of the song that appears on the "Carry On Up The Charts" compilation, that one is about 3 minutes shorter. Next up is the political masterpiece "Have You Ever Been Away". As far as the song goes it is a complaint against the people in charge who say "We'll fight them on the beaches." and other moral boosting things yet they are rarely on the front lines. This is the kind of song the Housemartins used to sing and it is really exonerating to listen to, especially when you realise you agree with the songwriters! The piano tune in the background keeps the pace and provides a bit of "uummpph" into the song, and when Brianna Corrigan joins in about halfway through, oh, the song couldn't get any better. The Beautiful South at their best IMO. <
br> "From Under The Covers" is yet another catchy tune and it actually amazes me that this wasn't put on "Carry On..." as I think it is worthy of being on that masterpiece album. The opening riff and the riff in-between verses does get to you if you are in the right mood and can get you quite worked up if you join in. A great song to hear live, especially with a good audience. Another ballad is next, "I'll Sail This Ship Alone" and Paul Heaton does a great job of singing a traditional love song. This is also on the "Carry On..." album and gets me every time. The lyrics are a work of genius too:- "Well they said if I wrote the perfect letter That I would have a chance. Well I wrote it, and you burnt it, And now do I have a chance anyway now?" The Beautiful South do 80's pop in the next 2 songs. Starting with what I think is one of the more enjoyable songs on the album, "Girlfriend" and moving on to "Straight in at 37" where Paul has a go at Simon Le Bon and Paul Young. The brass section playing in the background of "Girlfriend" does give the song a good strong rhythm though. That is what I miss about many of toady's artists, they lack proper instruments, relying on computer-generated music. Whilst this is good, it's not brilliant and this song shows that a proper band will still outclass anything a computer can do. Moving on to my all time favourite Beautiful South song, "You Keep It All In" (which I used to have on video when they played at Glastonbury but someone taped over it, grrrr...). I shouldn't need to comment on this one, if you have never heard it then where have you been? The 'South have done many versions of this song, post a message to the List for Whoever if you want to know how many (join at http://home.bluemarble.net/~bsouth/index.html) and whilst this album version is good, I do be
lieve their live versions are better. The trumpets and saxophones have the middle of the song to themselves when they play the song live and it sounds amazing. Song 8 is the great "Woman In The Wall". This song didn't grab me straight away but boy, does it grow on you. The content is a bit risky so I wouldn't let your kids listen to this one but you enjoy it by all means. For once the Beautiful South are taking a stance the authorities agree with. This song, with the lyrics "Cry Freedom for the Woman in the Wall", is against wife-beaters. "Oh Blackpool" is light-hearted with a foot-tapping drumbeat to hook you in. Not my favourite but I still can't help joining in the chorus. The same goes for "Love Is", track 10 on the album. When I hear "So don't beg, don't plead, you can't have the heart you made bleed" I really love to join in. This songs focuses on the life of a song-writer who believes women only love him because he is in the business. When he is with a girl who wonders "Where were you in the colder days?". Brilliant lyrics. The album for me ends on a low however. I am not a big fan of "I love you (but you're boring)" and the spooky ending of this song leaves me cold. Even though I am not a fan of this song it is still worth remembering that the weakest Beautiful South song is worth about 1 million Lolly songs (sorry Lolly, catchy songs but no substance)! A great album that shows the Beautiful South as they used to be. If you listen to "Song for Whoever" then their new track "Closer than Most" you will see just how one excellent band can change over the years and still keep up with the times. Well worth the money and a great introduction to The Beautiful South.
"Welcome to..." provides a great welcome to this band, if you've never heard their music before. Coming soon after the Housemartins split, the vocal talents of Paul Heaton , Dave Hemmingway and Dave Rotheray are emerging, along with the original band members: Sean Welch and David Stead. On the original Go! Discs label, this album is slowly becoming a classic. In fact, initial copies are quite rare, as the cover was deemed too upsetting for some and was replaced by a graphic of a teddy bear, which as well as proving a point, raised the monetary value of the original pressings. The track listing is as follows: 1. Song for Whoever 2. Have You Ever Been Away 3. From Under The Covers 4. I'll Sail This Ship Alone 5. Girlfriend 6. Straight In At 37 7. You Keep It All In 8. Woman In The Wall 9. Oh Blackpool 10. Love Is.... 11. I Love You (But You're Boring). The tracks range from the fast tempo of the popular "Pebbles" cover, "Girlfriend" at just under 3 minutes, to "Love Is..." at 7 minutes, yet all tracks have their roles to play in our understanding of how the Beatiful South "works." Having seen this band live on a number of occassions, their studio albums are actually often a poor reflection on their talents as a band - the track "Woman In The Wall" is far better live, with the catchy lyrics: "Cry Freedom For the Woman in the Wall Cry Freedom, for she has no voice at all I hear her voice, all day, all night.... ....made a cross from knitting needles and a grave from hoover bags especially for the woman in the wall." Replaying the album for the umpteenth time always reminds me of school discos, where boys would try and "get off" with one of the girls' names mentioned in "Song For Whoever", which is so simple, it's incredibly effective. The album rounds off with the experiment
al "I Love You...", which simply leaves you wanting to know more, I usually follow this by listening to "Carry On..."
This is, unsurprisingly, the Beautiful South's debut album, released little over a year after the break-up of the Housemartins. Considering the short time scale Paul Heaton had to form a new group, write an album with a new co-writer, and then record the album with string and brass arrangements, I think the quality is remarkable. Whilst there may not be the depth of sound on the most recent albums, this still contains some of the group's best loved songs, namely 'Song for whoever' and 'You keep it all in'. It is also quite different in sound to the group's other albums with some tracks sounding quite easy-listening, some latin dance (Woman in the wall), some quite noisy guitar music and the really weird 'I love you (but you're boring)', with it's mixture of chatting, acoustic guitar, sound effects and fairground organ. This is certainly more experimental than the group's other work, though obviously not nearly as strange as anything like Bjork or Blur's 13, with some songs lasting 6 or 7 minutes, having 3 movements in the case of 'Love is...', but it is still top quality, melodic songwriting above all. There is certainly a contrast between the music and the lyrics, with 9 of the 11 tracks being, directly or indirectly, about death or murder. This is all sung beautifully by the group's 3 vocalists, and the lead vocal is more evenly shared out than on 'Quench' or 'Miaow'.
This is the first of TBS's albums, and definitely one of my favourites. As well as the "Song for Whoever", one of the most popular TBS songs, it has little known gems like "Love is...", a cynical look at the adoration which fame brings. Briana Corrigan's voice blends perfectly with Heaton's, and the melodies set to Heaton's lyrics suit all the voices they were written for beautifully. With the trade mark cynicism and the delectable combination of bittersweet lyrics and bouncy tunes, this is a beautiful south classic.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Song For Whoever
2 Have You Ever Been Away
3 From Under The Covers
4 I'll Sail This Ship Alone
6 Straight In At 37
7 You Keep It All In
8 Woman In The Wall
9 Oh Blackpool
10 Love Is...
11 I Love You (But You're Boring)