GHS 24103 Home & Abroad
Produced by Peter Wilson
Released on May 1986
UK CHART POSITION #8
Find it at GEMM
GHS 24103 cover
[high resolution photo]
 

A rumpled suit of a record, hastily packed and donned with sartorial indifference. (I just like working the word “sartorial” into sentences.) The Style Council has always baffled me, and they’re even more inscrutable on stage apparently, since I can’t decide whether the languid performances here are the result of laziness or smarminess or simple ineptness in the recording. One thing I have decided is that I don’t like Home And Abroad. Even Joe Jackson didn’t take himself this seriously, and there’s nothing in these continental confections that Elvis Costello hasn’t done with more aplomb and pointed commentary. Listening to these performances, I have a hard time believing that any of these songs were big hits in the UK; they just melt into the backdrop without so much as a hummable chorus passing by. I can appreciate that The Style Council is trying to retrofit their ideological brain to a body with some soul in it, but it’s a Frankenstein’s monster so far as I can see. Or maybe the performances are just flat. Home And Abroad doesn’t start out on good footing: the opening seconds sound for the life of me like the turntable is on the wrong speed, and it’s a question that plagues me throughout the record. Although the live version of “Internationalists” was issued as a single, their performance of “Walls Come Tumbling Down!” is my favorite track on here since it actually has energy and emotion behind it. I’d warn you away from this record entirely, but as I said before I’ve got a big blind spot where The Style Council are concerned. Trouser Press called the performances “squeaky clean,” so for all I know fans of the originals will feel right at home with this record.

GHS 24103 back cover
GHS 24103 back cover

TRACK LISTING

  1. MY EVER CHANGING MOODS    4:34
  2. THE LODGERS    (Paul Weller/Mick Talbot)    4:36
  3. HEAD START FOR HAPPINESS    3:14
  4. (WHEN YOU) CALL ME    4:16
  5. THE WHOLE POINT OF NO RETURN    3:10
  6. WITH EVERYTHING TO LOSE    (Paul Weller/Steve White)    4:02
  7. HOMEBREAKERS    (Paul Weller/Mick Talbot)    4:56
  8. SHOUT TO THE TOP    3:18
  9. WALLS COME TUMBLING DOWN!    3:28
  10. INTERNATIONALISTS    (Paul Weller/Mick Talbot)    5:08

    All songs written by Paul Weller unless noted

CREDITS

return to THE STYLE COUNCIL discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK May 1986 Polydor LP TSCLP3  
US May 1986 Geffen LP/CS GHS 24103  
CAN 1986 Polydor LP POLR2012  
GER 1986 Polydor LP 829 143  
NET   Polydor CD 829 143  
JPN   Polydor CD UICY-9096  

 

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