ARE 38161 Suburban Voodoo
Produced by Nick Lowe
Released on August 1982
Find it at GEMM
ARE 38161 cover
[high resolution photo]

P aul Carrack has a charming voice, which helps immensely when you’re delivering a line like “I need you like a fly needs a plane.” If you’re wondering how Lowe he could go, Suburban Voodoo has your answer. Nick produced the record, cowrote six of the tracks and brought in his backing band to play it. As a result, it sounds like a Nick Lowe record, but you won’t hear me complain; I like Nick Lowe. (I also like saying the name “Nick Lowe.”) Most of the English pub pop records sound the same to me anyway: Paul Carrack, Squeeze, Ian Gomm, Nick Lowe (thunderous applause). Squeeze is the cleverest of the lot, Lowe below them, but the voodoo that Paul Carrack does isn’t so different in effect: “I Need You,” “What A Way To Go,” “Lesson In Love.” Mostly he’s the life of other people’s parties: Ace (“How Long”), Squeeze (“Tempted”), Mike + The Mechanics (“Silent Running”). Here he’s an ingratiating host, the punch is pretty punchy and there’s plenty of cake for everyone. It didn’t titillate any of the A&Rgoyles to plan Paul’s next party, but middle-aged men with thinning hair are hard work to market (and I had the eHarmony page to prove it). Also, Paul’s records require a lot of involvement from other people: players, producers, songwriters. They usually come on the coattails of a hit single with somebody else and carry over from other sessions (Nick the Knife, Mike + The Mechanics); sort of a party made from leftovers. Squeeze and Nick Lowe fans will find the food familiar: “From Now On,” “Out of Touch.” While it lacks the magical moments of East Side Story, Suburban Voodoo is nearly as sharp as Nick’s last record. More Motown than Englandtown, more soulful too, but otherwise in the same neighborhood.

ARE 38161 back cover ARE 38161 picture sleeve
ARE 38161 back cover ARE 38161 picture sleeve


  1. LESSON IN LOVE    (Paul Carrack)    2:58
  2. ALWAYS BETTER WITH YOU    (Paul Carrack)    3:30
  3. I NEED YOU    (Paul Carrack/Nick Lowe/Martin Belmont)    2:47
  4. I'M IN LOVE    (Carlene Carter/Nick Lowe)    3:16
  5. DON'T GIVE MY HEART A BREAK    (Carlene Carter/Nick Lowe/Paul Carrack)    3:21
  6. A LITTLE UNKIND    (Paul Carrack)    3:03
  7. OUT OF TOUCH    (Chris Difford/Glenn Tilbrook)    3:06
  8. WHAT A WAY TO GO    (Paul Carrack/Nick Lowe/Martin Belmont/James Eller/J.E. Ceiling)    2:50
  9. SO RIGHT, SO WRONG    (Paul Carrack/Nick Lowe/Martin Belmont/James Eller/J.E. Ceiling)    3:29
  10. FROM NOW ON    (Nick Lowe)    3:20
  11. CALL ME TONIGHT    (Paul Carrack/Alan Spenner)    3:05
  12. I FOUND LOVE    (Neil Hubbard)    3:37


PAUL CARRACK -- vocal, piano, organ, backing vocals
BOBBY IRWIN -- drums, backing vocals
Nick Lowe -- backing vocals
Paul Cobbold -- engineer
Brian Griffin -- photography

UK 1982 Epic LP EPC 85992  
US August 1982 Epic LP/CS ARE/PET 38161 picture sleeve
AUS'L 1982 Epic LP ELPS 4339  
CAN 1982 Epic LP FE 38161  
NET 1982 Epic LP CX 85992 inner sleeve
US   Epic CD EK-38161  
UK/NET May 15, 2006 Acadia CD ACA-8107  


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