Monday, 4 June 2018

The Beautiful South - Welcome To The Beautiful South (1989)

I love you from the bottom of my pencil case....


Released October 1989


1. Song For Whoever
2. Have You Ever Been Away
3. From Under The Covers
4. I'll Sail This Ship Alone
5. Girlfriend
6. Straight In At 37
7. You Keep It All In
8. Woman In The Wall
9. Oh Blackpool
10. Love Is...
11. I Love You (But You're Boring)            

Superb, quirky debut album released in 1989 by The Beautiful South, with its sometimes baffling lyrics - sad, funny, tasteless, cynical, tongue in cheek, heartbreaking. Rather like the character of band “leader” (disputed), Paul Heaton - a Morrissey-like amalgam of conflicting moods and behaviour patterns. A character virtually impossible to predict, analyse or second guess. At times I admire him greatly. At others I find him an insufferable whatever.

Similarly, the band’s music is impossible to categorise. I can’t even begin to do it. Just as many of the band’s members are somewhat faceless, some of the music just sort of washes over you.

There are some lovely songs on here though - the impossibly catchy “Song For Whoever”, the plaintive “I’ll Sail This Ship Alone”, the cod-funk of “Girlfriend” and the frankly perplexing “Woman In The Wall” with its lilting, South African influence.

Quite an impressive first outing. A remastering is long overdue. Only on compilations will you find any of The South’s material in remastered format, which is a shame.


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