60390-1 Dream Into Action
Produced by Rupert Hine
Released on March 1985
UK CHART POSITION #2 . . . US CHART POSITION #10 . . .
GOLD RECORD (6/17/85), PLATINUM (3/25/88)
Find it at GEMM
60390-1 cover
[high resolution photo]
 

T he spiky-haired imp with the synth banks and the streak of optimism struck gold with Dream Into Action. As DIY synth albums go, this is fantastic, catapulting Jones into the front corps alongside Thomas Dolby. Based on the first side of music, you could make a case for this as one of 1985’s best albums. The irrepressible “Things Can Only Get Better,” “Like To Get To Know You Well” and the first appearance of “No One Is To Blame” are top-tier tunes, the philosophical “Life In One Day” and the title track a mere notch below them. Only the anti-carnivore “Assault And Battery” misses the mark, although it may resonate more with people who really believe meat is murder. (Opinions are important to have but not to share, since they accumulate like dust on a needle, based on the random grooves we pass through. I’m sure there are people who are pro choice and pro animal rights, which would seem on the surface to defy logic, yet their personal experience validates their opinions as it should.) Sorry, got sidetracked there. There isn’t a readily identifiable hit on the second side, but strong songs exist, by turns playful (“Look Mama,” “Bounce Right Back”) and more serious (“Elegy,” “Hunger For The Flesh”). That balance between light and dark is a Howard Jones hallmark, picking up his own spirits one moment, sinking into moody introspection the next, rinse and repeat. The consistency of the songwriting saves the exercise from growing dull; most synth artists had to lean on instrumentals or experimental strangeness to break up the sameness born from a dozen synthetic pop songs (what Ringo appropriately tagged “spooky weirdness.”) For a time anyway, Howard Jones was part of the optimistic ‘80s pop explosion that included Phil Collins and Wham!, with Dream Into Action his biggest stateside success. Definitely one for the ‘80s time capsule, and I mean that in the nicest possible way.

60390-1 back cover 60390-1 lyric sleeve
60390-1 back cover 60390-1 lyric sleeve

TRACK LISTING

  1. THINGS CAN ONLY GET BETTER    4:02
  2. LIFE IN ONE DAY    3:39
  3. NO ONE IS TO BLAME    3:28
  4. DREAM INTO ACTION    3:45
  5. LIKE TO GET TO KNOW YOU WELL    3:59
  6. ASSAULT AND BATTERY    4:51
  7. LOOK MAMA    3:53
  8. BOUNCE RIGHT BACK    3:55
  9. ELEGY    4:20
  10. IS THERE A DIFFERENCE?    3:33
  11. AUTOMATON    4:04
  12. HUNGER FOR THE FLESH    3:54

    All tracks music and lyrics by Howard Jones

CREDITS

HOWARD JONES -- lyrics, vocals, instruments, programming
Afrodiziak -- backing vocals
  Claudia Fontaine
  Naomi Thompson
  Caron Wheeler
The Effervescents -- girls' voices (6)
  Laura Bishop
  Kirstie Fulthorpe
  Elizabeth Hoden
  Tania Matos
Helen Liebman -- cello (9)
TKO Horns -- brass
  Brian Maurice
  Jim Patterson
  Dave Pleurs
  Alan Whetton
Stephen W. Tayler -- engineer, mixing
Simon Fowler -- album sleeve photography
Rob O'Connor/Stylo Rouge -- graphic design

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK March 1985 WEA LP/CS WX15/C lyric sleeve
US 1985 Elektra LP/CD/CS 60390 lyric sleeve
WW 1985 WEA LP/CD 240 632 lyric sleeve
JPN 1985 WEA LP P-13086 lyric insert

 

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