25077-1 Mister Heartbreak
Produced by Laurie Anderson, Bill Laswell, Roma Baran, Peter Gabriel
Released on 1984
Find it at GEMM
25077-1 cover
[high resolution photo]

W hat would Laurie Anderson sound like if she had a backing band of alternative rock all-stars at her disposal? Like pure, left-handed heaven. Percussionist David Van Tieghem, producer Roma Baran and novelist William Burroughs are the croutons left over from the salad days, Nile Rodgers, Peter Gabriel, Adrian Belew and Anton Fier are the ringers. Minimalism be damned, Laurie goes for a richer sonic experience than her previous work, and boy does it work. On Big Science, you had to read between the lines, but you won’t find any space between the lines on Mister Heartbreak; it’s all spelled out for you. That may disappoint some, who might have left more to the imagination. The rough, raw innocence of an “O Superman” made you stare intently at it, and truth be told I sometimes allow my eye to wander during Mister Heartbreak because I know my ear will catch what I’ve missed. But so few people make music like Laurie Anderson that you owe it to yourself to at least make the acquaintance of Mister Heartbreak. He’s an interesting guy, this Mister, with plenty to say: “Gravity’s Angel,” “Langue d’Amour,” “Excellent Birds.” By repeating phrases, Anderson slowly twists our head to see what she wants us to see. Always reminds me of the Superman teaser: “It’s a bird. It’s a plane. It’s Superman.” It ceases to be either a bird or a plane and yet becomes something both bird and plane. Yes, that’s right, I’m analyzing the opening credits to Superman. Some things are better experienced than explained. Mister Heartbreak is one of them.

25077-1 back cover 25077-1 lyric sleeve
25077-1 back cover 25077-1 lyric sleeve


  1. SHARKEY'S DAY    7:41
  2. LANGUE D'AMOUR    6:12
  3. GRAVITY'S ANGEL    6:02
  4. KOKOKU    7:03
  5. EXCELLENT BIRDS    (Peter Gabriel/Laurie Anderson)    3:12
  6. BLUE LAGOON    7:03
  7. SHARKEY'S NIGHT    2:29

    All songs written by Laurie Anderson unless noted


LAURIE ANDERSON -- vocals, Synclavier, violin, whistle, electronic conches, Vocoder, bell, percussion, cover and inner sleeve art and graphics
BILL LASWELL -- bass, mixing help
Adrian Belew -- guitar
Bill Blaber -- soprano (6)
William S. Burroughs -- vocals (7)
Michelle Cobbs -- back-up vocals (1)
Anton Fier -- drums, toms, woodblock
Peter Gabriel -- back-up vocals, vocals, Synclavier, Linn drum
Connie Harvey -- Japanese chorus (4)
Dolette McDonald -- back-up vocals (1)
Brenda Nelson -- back-up vocals (1)
Daniel Ponce -- iya, ikonkolo, shekere, double bell from the Cameroons (1)
Nile Rodgers -- guitar (5)
Phoebe Snow -- back-up vocals (4)
David Van Tieghem -- plywood, bowls, Simmons drums, drums, steel drum, gato, bamboo
Sang Won Park -- kayagum (4)
Janet Wright -- Japanese chorus (4)
Atsuko Yuma -- back-up vocals (4)
Leanne Ungar -- engineer
Bob Bielecki -- technical consultant and systems design

US 1984 Warner Bros. LP/CD 25077 lyric sleeve
UK/GER 1984 Warner Bros. LP/CD/CS 925 077 lyric sleeve
BRA 1984 Warner Bros. LP 6047 044  
CAN 1984 Warner Bros. LP 92 50771 lyric sleeve
JPN 1984 Warner Bros. LP P-11442 lyric insert


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