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alisonmoyet raindancing
Artist: Alison Moyet
Title: Raindancing (Re-release deluxe edition)
Genre: New Wave & Synth Pop
Release Date: 25th November 2016
Label: BMG Rights Management


Album Review

Raindancing… struggling to keep the pace.

ALISON MOYET’s re-issues of past glories certainly raise questions. While avid fans or open listeners will find them a delight and amusement, new generations might consider them nothing but a contraption to suck them into the nostalgia trip that’s been happening for the past five years. On top of that, reading the singer’s opinions on each of the albums makes the listener wonder if we should even give it a try considering that for ‘Alf’ and ‘Raindancing’ the road was full of struggle, deception, disappointment and manipulation. Is this the music we want to enjoy? But then again, more often than not, we know nothing on the machinations behind our favourite music.

So in an age when the argument of “not being commercial” didn´t mean much, at least not in the pop world, the purpose of ‘Raindancing’ was clear: to establish ALISON MOYET as the pop star she already was in the UK but across the big pond and why not? With her inimitable and seductive voice, with the past success in the dance side of synth pop along with Vince Clarke, an excess of over-engineering and production… who could’ve said it was the formula for disappointment? ‘Raindancing’ is a continuation of the 80s dance-disco beats that indeed, parades much more production that parlays with the synthetic. Contrary to what MOYET has written in regards to the album and her involvement in the sound and the traumatic outcome apparently, ‘Raindancing’ fits the bar of commercial albums back then, the overproduction provides it with a poppy freshness that Alf lacked. And although some critics have stated that ‘Raindancing’ goes through pop music without shame nor glory, following the path of revivalism and nostalgia, 29 years later certainly grants some patina appealing to old and new listeners whatever their motives.

And although disappointment expires, fear of failure do not. Hence, the re-issuing of the 2nd album brings forward more material than ‘Alf’, not only in new remixes of ‘Is this Love’, ‘Weak in the Presence of Beauty’, ‘Ordinary girl’, (this one actually has two of them) and ‘This House’; but also by adding an extended version of ‘Blow Wind Blow’, a couple of live performances of ‘Love Resurrection’, and ‘Ne Me Quitte Pas’; previously unreleased demo ‘You and Me’ and new tracks that only the most dedicated fan would know from haunting rare vinyl versions. Among those rare tunes a few stand out. Such is the case of ‘Take My Imagination to Bed’ that samples the chorus, the eponymous line is a strong intervention that sticks in our ears and keeps us moving. ‘Love Letters’ flirts with the cabaret influence turn into pop ballad thriving thanks to ALISON MOYET’s unmistakable voice; and although overly produced, it matches the perfect soundtrack for a TV drama. ‘The Coventry Carol’ is indeed a special performance that breaks the pace of an otherwise average 80s pop parade playing with the old and the new by adding tints of the synth fever and recording sound systems and techniques turning a plain piece into an interesting pastiche. The album closes though with a little jewel, ‘Let's Get Personal’, a piece worked together with James Brown proving once more the support Disco gave to the decade and the appropriations of it by pop.

Indeed, ‘Raindancing’ might not have been the best bet for many, although sales state the contrary by reaching number two in the UK charts and staying 35 weeks in the Top 40, yet it is a good example of the good and bad of a decade, with the formulaic and the struggle to keep a trend.


Tracklist

CD1
01. Weak In the Presence of Beauty
02. Ordinary Girl
03. You Got Me Wrong
04. Without You
05. Sleep Like Breathing
06. Is This Love?
07. Blow Wind Blow
08. Glorious Love
09. When I Say (No Giveaway)
10. Stay

CD1
01. Is This Love? (L.A. Mix - Produced by Dave Stewart)
02. Blow Wind Blow (Long Version)
03. Weak In the Presence of Beauty (Extended Mix)
04. To Work On You
05. Take My Imagination To Bed
06. Ordinary Girl (Remix)
07. Palm Of Your Hand (Cloak & Dagger)
08. Ordinary Girl (Dance Mix)
09. Love Letters
10. This House (Original Mix)
11. Love Letters (Extended Version)
12. The Coventry Carol (From Olympics benefit album ‘A Very Special Christmas’, 1987)
13. Love Resurrection (Live at Wembley Arena, 13th May 1987)
14. Ne Me Quitte Pas (Live At Wembley Arena, 13th May 1987)
15. You And Me (Previously unreleased demo)
16. Let´s Get Personal (with James Brown)


Line-up

Alison Moyet - Singer


Website

http://alisonmoyet.com / https://www.facebook.com/AlisonMoyet/ 


Cover Picture

alisonmoyet raindancing


Rating

Music: 5
Sound: 9
Total: 7 / 10





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