The Blue Nile: C or D?

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The Scottish Talk Talk, or pretty pop for Christians who find Low too weird?

Colin Meeder, Thursday, 17 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

At least three great singles, albums full of filler, and the most shocking mid-performance weeping I've ever heard.

Colin Meeder, Thursday, 17 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

I bought "A Walk Across the Rooftops" when it came out, and I've played it and enjoyed it many times. I never thought to buy the follow-up, "Hats", until a couple months ago. This must stand as the all-time longest I've waited to buy another record by any artist; what, 18 years? This is no reflection on the quality of "A Walk", however, it's really quite good. "Hats" is similar, but a bit more ingratiating, a bit more pop. I still haven't heard the third one, it's got an awful album cover. Still, I do recommend the first. The Talk Talk comparison isn't entirely out of line, but they write catchier melodies, and didn't get as experimental.

Sean, Thursday, 17 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

'A Walk Across the Rooftops' is one of the most perfectly realised debut records I can think of - twinkling, lush, melancholy and cinematic (some dream collaboration between Bill Forsyth and Leo Carax). The title song in particular suggested a pop that could be 'adult' but effervescent. 'Easter Parade', a sketch of a song that Sinatra might have appreciated, was on every compilation tape I made for ten years. Wonderful.

'Hats' consolidated the debut, practically down to the track listing, but suffered from having Phil Collins' recommendation stickered to the front. 'Saturday night' was an epic transfiguration of the commonplace, a pop Les Parapluis du Cherbourg, and the kind of song Brett Anderson would like to write in his Scott Walker moments if a) he had clue and b) a few thousand years in which to try.

The last lp - Peace at last? - is very disappointing. The cinemascope sheen was replaced with acoustic guitars, the singing had all gone a bit Michael Bolton, and yes the sleeve was terrible. Maybe this is what happens when you go out with Rosanna Arquette. It seemed to bear out all those who'd had them pegged as some MOR monstrosity, a Dire Straits in waiting. A couple of songs - 'Family Life', 'Tomorrow Morning' - might be worth downloading, but the rest of it is a bit bleh.

Edna Welthorpe, Mrs, Thursday, 17 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

I actually like that third album, but then again I don't really rate the first two albums on such a purely evocative/epic level as y'all are doing. They are pretty damn good, though, it's just that my sympathies would still come down with Talk Talk in the end. ;-)

My favorite performance by Mr. Wossname who is the singer is actually his turn on the version of "Let's Go Out Tonight" -- I think that's the song -- on Craig Armstrong's first album.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 17 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

As I've said before, my aunt used to date Paul Joseph Moore. But I know little of the band. We used to have all these free Blue Nile cassettes laying around the house, but as I was young I had little interest in listening.

Melissa W, Thursday, 17 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

The Talk Talk comparison is interesting. I can sort of see the connection, maybe in the softer moments of The Colour Of Spring, but in most ways they are totally distinct except for their basic mood. I think this comparison must be the result of trying to find one for The Blue Nile and failing to come up with anything that would actually recommend purchase - they really are like an oasis in a desert of MOR-eighties pop.

Recommendations... A Walk Across The Rooftops has "Tinseltown In The Rain" which is one of my favourite love songs ever, but Hats is the better album, with about five perfect songs on it. Amazing how similar they are though, despite the six-year gap (there's your big difference to Talk Talk - these guys stumbled upon a vision of perfection early on and stuck with it).

Tim, Thursday, 17 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

excellent - the talk talk comparison is spot on - i loved 'a walk' more than 'hats'. The Linn drums and that bass were a big influence. They epitomize that '80s pristine quality - the 'clean lines' i'm always banging on about.

, Friday, 18 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Clasic. The song's are almost uncoverable as the lyrics are so unaffected that in anyone else they would sound gauche. Do I love you. YES, I love you

Edna's summary is bang OTM. Let's go out tonight is just desperately affecting, you know this relationship is doomed with just the clutter and routine holding it together.

I don't know about stumbling on perfection, I believe they scrapped 3 years of work before starting on Hats properly. Anyway they stumbled out of perfection on the lasr album.

Ned, the Craig Armstrong album is fab also for having one of Liz Frazers few decent performances in the 90's. Liz Frazer working with the Blue Nile now that's an idea...

Billy Dods, Friday, 18 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

What Edna and Billy said. I love Hats. Never bothered with the last album.

Dr. C, Friday, 18 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Billy - the 'stumbling' part refers to the beginning of their career. I get the feeling that Hats took so long because it was so hard to exactly replicate A Walk... and at the same time improve on it. (in this case second album syndrome = not "same but different" but "same but better").

Tim, Friday, 18 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

the blue nile? isnt that a river in egypt? what that got to do with music. i saw michael palin go down it on pole to pole on at chrismas so maybe you should start i love michael palin thread. but i wouldnt be interested because michael palin a ponce.

XStatic Peace, Friday, 18 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

first album is all about the first flush of youth/love/innocence/awe/wonder/etc. eg - 'i am in loooove, i am in loooove with you, ...i walk across the rooftops...' etc etc.

the second is all concerned with the death of love/getting older/etc. eg - 'i'm tired of crying on the staiiiirs...'

it's kind of a godfather/godfather part 2 deal. and all they're bestheard back to back

piscesboy, Friday, 18 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

The Blue Line is just such an underrated band. I find their "Hats" al bum is one of the best pop records of all time - and also a godfather for the sound of pioneer "post-rock" bands like Disco Inferno and, very specially, Bark Psychosis: angst-ridden vocals hanging on a spacious soundscape with electronica drumbeats and ambient samples. Definitely, The Blue Nile are A+.

Juan M., Monday, 21 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

I didn't realise Pet Shop Boys were post-rock.

(okay truthfully I can see the connection at least with Bark Psychosis, but it always seemed to me that The Blue Nile represented the "other half" of BP's source material). Hats multiplied by Spirit Of Eden = Hex.

Tim, Monday, 21 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Boring annoying bullshit. "Hats" is absolutely unlistenable. Especially the singer's voice let's me run up the walls. I guess a kick in the ass would do him well. This does not even qualify for wallpaper music. The only band which is as embarrassing is Sigur Ros.

alex in mainhattan, Monday, 21 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

there was a program on tv the other night that had a drum&bass version of Tinseltown in the Rain as the theme. Such a great band, so many bad ideas. Walk Across the Rooftops is fantastic though.

hamish, Wednesday, 23 January 2002 01:00 (seventeen years ago) link

one year passes...
Simply the most amazing music ever made.

Cozen (Cozen), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 00:16 (sixteen years ago) link

The third album really is worth the effort, what puts me off listening to it though is all the Christian stuff. Ultimately it is a back-to-the-roots acoustic album with very conservative lyrics all about home, family and church, but contains some moments of raw ecstacy, ie;Tomorrow Morning, Sentimental Man and Soon. As for Michael Bolton, the very first time I listened to 'Over the Hillside' I thought I'd picked up a Richard Marx album by mistake, but despite their MOR tendencies they have produced some really transcendent music.

Gatinha (rwillmsen), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 01:52 (sixteen years ago) link

Classic. Particularly their two 80s albums.

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 11:09 (sixteen years ago) link


one) You won’t like them. A Walk Across The Rooftops contains slap bass, trite lyrics on the debris of relationships, pans from (yawn) Coppola’s One From the Heart into (yawn) Paris, Texas, sung by Springsteen impersonating Sinatra. Hats has two white reggae tracks, gated snares, repeated use of the word ‘baby’, yes, is ‘lush’, ‘cinematic’ and MOR. Annie Lennox and Rod Stewart have covered their songs. Phil Collins endorses them.

two) I don’t like American Music Club, John Cale, Talking Heads, Rickie Lee Jones or The Cars either.

three) Men in American books tend to wear hats.

four) Katy (my girlfriend) was in a philosophy class and, as the hush of young students began to stifle and choke, the teacher, by way of gesture, mentioned the best class he ever had occurred when Paul Buchanan, ‘you probably haven’t heard of him’, suggested they talk about love.

five) No-one has registered the scientific unproveability of ‘love’ in song more heart-rendingly than Paul Buchanan: singing “how do I know you feel it?”, just moments from loss, or the frustrated ‘I can only tell you’ of “do I love you? YES I love you!”

six) What do you say when three years into a relationship the only things holding you together is the fear of breaking the ties you’ve built in the outside world as a unit? When an offer of tea is the only lull in the silence? “Let’s go out tonight”, one last time, meet up with the ghost of your happiness, it can be the same again, you will dance, for one night, oh to bed the same different woman every night, and leave the relationship strafed with cigarette burns and headaches in, alone.

seven) Such compassionate pop. During Hats, the band’s lives were fragmenting and none of them felt they had any support around them, it would have been so easy to become insular and dismissive of others in such a situation.

eight) Below a peat sky, her hair is scraped through with coral orange and tickles of grey, and a smell of moist pollen sewn into the webs of her fingers. Scotland’s inability to say Carl strains a last laugh out from her, smoke knuckles through our hair, as the aftertaste of other men places her lips and her eyes’ slow moulder.

nine) You will like them. A Walk Across the Rooftops is a deeply emotional water, Buchanan a child lost in the weave of a Frank O’Hara poem. Hats refuses Don Paterson’s cycnicism of romance and insists on the transcendental of the ordinary and of the journey, the pressure difference.

!) I think romanticism suggests this sense of wilfully not having it all, leaving that one bit back, the whole, the mysterious ‘last’ that can never be reached, romanticism is the journey to try and attain that that you’re purposefully denying yourself. I have never listened to their third record, I most probably never will.

Cozen (Cozen), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 15:30 (sixteen years ago) link

Nice one, Coz!

Jerry the Nipper (Jerrynipper), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 15:40 (sixteen years ago) link

By the way: one of the things that justifies file-sharing for all time is that I was finally able to get hold of a copy of their first (?) ever song 'I love this life'. And it's turned out to be my favourite song of theirs.

Jerry the Nipper (Jerrynipper), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 15:45 (sixteen years ago) link

Cozen! Yes!

Dr. C (Dr. C), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 15:50 (sixteen years ago) link

Cozen that was just lovely, thank you.

Sean (Sean), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 15:59 (sixteen years ago) link

nice one. it reminds me of pinefox's post on the joyce thread.

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 16:05 (sixteen years ago) link

(Haha, Julio, that's where I nicked my structure, but I guess it was alright cos I think he nicked the turn from the X Y Zedd post on the 'What if Punk Never Happened?' thread).

Cozen (Cozen), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 18:01 (sixteen years ago) link

I think Daniel Bedingfield is as close as modern pop gets to The Blue Nile. I get the feeling that he's a stubborn perfectionist too, answering only to his standards, steeped in integrity and honesty. Imagine if he took 5 years to write and record his follow up. It'd be amazing.

Cozen (Cozen), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 18:10 (sixteen years ago) link

''Imagine if he took 5 years to write and record his follow up. It'd be amazing.''

or it could be a disaster too i suppose.

''(Haha, Julio, that's where I nicked my structure, but I guess it was alright cos I think he nicked the turn from the X Y Zedd post on the 'What if Punk Never Happened?' thread).''

I just thought i had seen something like that. but yr post is triffic in its own way.

Julio Desouza (jdesouza), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 18:45 (sixteen years ago) link

(Aw shucks, thanks you guys! Actually, I realised today that every thing I've ever written has, in some way, been to make someone fall in love with me or notice me and that post was specifically written to make Dr C notice me (and to make him happy, too) after I'd written my little heart into All of My Heart last week without him popping up; it was also written as an accompinament (god, spelling) to a Blue Nile 'best of...' I'm making up for a friend.)

Cozen (Cozen), Tuesday, 25 March 2003 18:50 (sixteen years ago) link

"I think Daniel Bedingfield is as close as modern pop gets to The Blue Nile."

Yes! "If You're Not The One" works in exactly the same way as the peerless "Tinseltown In The Rain" ie. a "generic" love song rendered strange and fascinating by the force and peculiarity of its emotional over-investment.

Although Cozen you should really check out that there new Coloma album which is almost self-consciously an update of The Blue Nile for the post-glitch generation. As with The Blue Nile it's svelte literary studio-pop that feels like all the sound-politics have been surgically removed (eg. this is click-pop only because, well, why not if it sounds good? cf. Schneider TM's "The Light 3000") so I imagine that in a decade or so it'll have that same lovely timeless-datedness as TBN's first two albums have. It's very much like A Walk Across The Rooftops in particular. Much better than their first album.

Tim Finney (Tim Finney), Wednesday, 26 March 2003 03:00 (sixteen years ago) link

did you realise that daniel bedingfield is a born again christian?

RJG (RJG), Thursday, 27 March 2003 00:14 (sixteen years ago) link

He was born somewhere really (relatively) 'weird', like Hawaii or something. I can't remember, I'll look it out.

Cozen (Cozen), Thursday, 27 March 2003 00:19 (sixteen years ago) link

he has a high speaking voice.

I saw him on 'today with des & mel'.

RJG (RJG), Thursday, 27 March 2003 00:47 (sixteen years ago) link

Yesterday I bought Rooftops for a dollar! :-)

Keith McD (Keith McD), Thursday, 27 March 2003 04:14 (sixteen years ago) link

I've jotted down some more thoughts on The Blue Nile and Coloma at Skykicking.

Tim Finney (Tim Finney), Tuesday, 8 April 2003 04:13 (sixteen years ago) link

Think you meant Skykicking.

hamish (hamish), Tuesday, 8 April 2003 04:29 (sixteen years ago) link

Just listened to A Walk Across the Rooftops today for the first time in a long while. Really sounds distinctly uneighties in the end, doesn't it. The Talk Talk comparisons now finally do make sense.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Tuesday, 8 April 2003 04:50 (sixteen years ago) link

Record Review of the Year, Tim. Just beautiful. Better than my Morgenstern one (did you my last e-mail?) by a good country mile, and there was me really happy with it and you show everyone how it's really done. Rat bastard. ;)

I figured out why I like Daniel Bedingfield earlier. Or one aspect. I remembered something Frank Kogan said to me about how he really liked the way that I wasn't scared to be overwrought when the usual rock-crit approach is to come across all Ed Casual (hehe, what's Frank's e-mail address again?). I suppose I see a lot of myself in Daniel. All thing considered, a juxtaposition of poets might be in order:

Everywhere he saw his own image, -
his perfect face...

When he rode out of the city, the people
gathered to admire him: a ribbon
of faces, fixed on this one face
and haunted by its indifference. They said:
'as beautiful as a painting', and we
feel a chill cast across these years
for we know there is another painting
that does not hang in any gallery

- John Ash

I like you so much I'm acting stupid
I can't play the game I'm all intense and alive
I'm losing control of my heart
I'm not supposed to be this nervous
I should play my hand all cool and calm
I can't breathe
I'm losing control of my heart

- Daniel Bedingfield

Cozen (Cozen), Tuesday, 8 April 2003 16:49 (sixteen years ago) link

Finney I mean Finery is indeed EXCELLENT.

Andy K (Andy K), Tuesday, 8 April 2003 17:06 (sixteen years ago) link

Sadly, I probably won't be able to get it here in Glasgow. And I'm internet-shopping averse. If I get it, I'll make a copy and give it to Paul Buchanan, I see him quite often, coming out of the local Safeways.

Cozen (Cozen), Tuesday, 8 April 2003 17:08 (sixteen years ago) link

("I can't breathe"!!!)

Cozen (Cozen), Tuesday, 8 April 2003 17:13 (sixteen years ago) link

I was thinking about why "Peace at Last" never appealed to me, and I reckon it's because it cuts the (admittedly tenuous) connection with disco. I love every single moment of "Tinseltown In The Rain", but the point where it really blows me away is the final string-riff loops where the disco beat suddenly gets more pronounced, and the whole song takes on this aura of bittersweet triumph. I could well imagine the song being the inspiration for Luomo's "The Present Lover". Actually Luomo could do a lot with a remix of The Blue Nile.

I was trying to think of more music from the eighties that fits into this area of explicitly emotional quasi-dance pop, but I couldn't get far beyond The Hounds of Love. Any ideas?

Tim Finney (Tim Finney), Thursday, 10 April 2003 00:44 (sixteen years ago) link

I have Hats, and that's definitely a Classic.

Anthony Miccio (Anthony Miccio), Thursday, 10 April 2003 01:09 (sixteen years ago) link

was trying to think of more music from the eighties that fits into this area of explicitly emotional quasi-dance pop, but I couldn't get far beyond The Hounds of Love. Any ideas?

Associates surely fit this description.

But Tim is OTM regarding Tinseltown being a lost dance classic, I certainly remember hearing it in clubs in Dundee in the mid-80's. Apparently they had some of their work from Hats remixed by Oakenfold (or some other name remixer), but they nixed it on hearing it. Now that I'd like to hear.

Billy Dods (Billy Dods), Thursday, 10 April 2003 07:32 (sixteen years ago) link

My other half was Paul's telephone answering service[flatmate]all through the writing and release of the first record.He says there was definately a whole bunch of up and happy songs right after rooftops.I met Paul once and he can do charm.Happy Easter everybody.

jean bowman, Sunday, 20 April 2003 09:51 (sixteen years ago) link

Happy Easter Jean.

Where did the up and happy songs go, then? Left to rot as demos?

Cozen (Cozen), Sunday, 20 April 2003 10:11 (sixteen years ago) link

Ta for the greetings. Re demos there must be millyens of them . If you see Paul ask him. I hear that Heatwave had five minutes of birds and boats before the music and even that was cut down from a long session outdoors. Regards to the West End, it must be great this time of year.

jean bowman, Sunday, 20 April 2003 19:05 (sixteen years ago) link

It is, it's lovely.

I don't think I'd have the bare-faced gall to actually talk to the man though.

It feels a bit criminal to actually listen to the Blue Nile at this time of year though, like I'm going to shatter the mood.

Cozen (Cozen), Sunday, 20 April 2003 19:12 (sixteen years ago) link

Interesting thread.

1. The only track I know is 'I Love This Life', which the Nipper gave me. The Nipper is right about it.

2. Cozen's big post above is indeed good, and indeed structurally resembles one of mine. But no, I didn't take my own structure from anyone else.

3. Whether or not the Bedingfield link is apt, I don't think 'emotional overinvolvement' etc is necessarily the key to 'If You're Not The One': what woke me up to that track was simply the rare quality of its tune.

the pinefox, Monday, 21 April 2003 09:20 (sixteen years ago) link

Thanks for the mix and the link! Judging from the song list, you really captured a specific late-night city summer vibe

licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Sunday, 2 July 2017 13:28 (two years ago) link

does Mid Air not have its own thread?

― k3vin k., Saturday, July 1, 2017 4:39 PM (yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

It should, it is the third best album of Paul buchanan songs and a rare inhabitant of the same zone as the Mark Hollis album

― or at night (Jon not Jon), Saturday, July 1, 2017 7:27 PM (yesterday) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink


Le Bateau Ivre, Sunday, 2 July 2017 21:59 (two years ago) link

the third it's immaterial album got shelved by the label in the 90's but it's due for release maybe later this year. this track off it definitely has blue nile-ish qualities but there's just no way his voice is ever going to compare to paul buchanan >

plp will eat itself (NickB), Sunday, 2 July 2017 22:12 (two years ago) link

that's where bark psych falls a bit short for me too. His voice is nice but that's about it.

or at night (Jon not Jon), Monday, 3 July 2017 00:21 (two years ago) link

k3vin k., Tuesday, 4 July 2017 05:42 (two years ago) link

have fun with this guys

k3vin k., Tuesday, 4 July 2017 06:08 (two years ago) link

Anyone heard the Lowland Hundred? Little group out of Aberystwyth that it's just dawned on me have elements of the Blue Nile about them (stately, nostalgic - albeit nostalgia filtered through a mining of the remote past - kinda naked). Under Cambrian Sky is a brilliant record.

The shard-borne beetle with his drowsy hums (Chinaski), Tuesday, 4 July 2017 15:20 (two years ago) link

I was at that show! (Liss Ard). It was magic. Never knew there was video. Thanks for posting.

Volvo Twilight (p-dog), Tuesday, 4 July 2017 17:27 (two years ago) link

jealous! i hope he tours again at some point. i'd go anywhere to watch

k3vin k., Tuesday, 4 July 2017 19:26 (two years ago) link

Wow. Just stumbled across this duet version of Easter Parade with the great Rickie Lee Jones, followed by Buchanan and co joining in with a version of Jones's Flying Cowboys. Not a collaboration I would've ever expected, but it totally works.

Pheeel, Thursday, 6 July 2017 18:20 (two years ago) link


k3vin k., Sunday, 16 July 2017 15:10 (two years ago) link

The Blue Nile-scored Govan Ghost Story linked in the article - for completists maybe, but I've had .wav files on my PC for years of the sound cues the three members did for this. Been interesting to hear dialogue snippets and wonder what the full scene depicted. Just an hour long.

the body of a spider... (scampering alpaca), Saturday, 29 July 2017 01:40 (two years ago) link

I haven't seen appropriate love for this unreleased track, "Meanwhile":

Pataphysician, Saturday, 29 July 2017 13:37 (two years ago) link

ten months pass...

shirley manson on a walk across the rooftops is a nice wee read

( ͡☉ ͜ʖ ͡☉) (jim in vancouver), Friday, 8 June 2018 19:22 (one year ago) link

oh man she fuckin nailed it

flamenco blorf (BradNelson), Friday, 8 June 2018 19:28 (one year ago) link


k3vin k., Friday, 8 June 2018 19:29 (one year ago) link

also what a great set of records she picked

flamenco blorf (BradNelson), Friday, 8 June 2018 19:29 (one year ago) link

That's a great read. She says lovely things about Sulk by Associates too. She has excellent taste.

kitchen person, Saturday, 9 June 2018 03:00 (one year ago) link

I think I was the only person on ILX who fell head over heels for the first Pure Bathing Culture lp. The second one was not much cop, but now they have decided to cover the whole of Hats! Not sure I want to hear Ben Gibbard singing, but the rest of the album might be good.

Stevie T, Thursday, 14 June 2018 19:47 (one year ago) link

ben gibbard also did a bandwagonesque cover album.

ben gibbard, leave my treasured glasgow/lanarkshire music alone you vandal

( ͡☉ ͜ʖ ͡☉) (jim in vancouver), Thursday, 14 June 2018 20:40 (one year ago) link

one month passes...

By the way: one of the things that justifies file-sharing for all time is that I was finally able to get hold of a copy of their first (?) ever song 'I love this life'. And it's turned out to be my favourite song of theirs.
― Jerry the Nipper (Jerrynipper), Tuesday, March 25, 2003 10:45 AM (fifteen years ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Fifteen years later I just heard this for the first time and think I agree: it has a vibrancy to it that they never again showed much interest in conveying. Even the Joe Jackson synth bass is excellent.

Naive Teen Idol, Monday, 23 July 2018 01:38 (one year ago) link

it's so good

k3vin k., Monday, 23 July 2018 02:03 (one year ago) link

five months pass...

xmas eve so you can listen to family life

Tomorrow will be Christmas
We'll be singing old songs
And light up the tree
God and all the mercy
And say all your prayers
For little old me

( ͡☉ ͜ʖ ͡☉) (jim in vancouver), Monday, 24 December 2018 21:43 (eleven months ago) link

a truly soul-crushing song

k3vin k., Monday, 24 December 2018 21:50 (eleven months ago) link

I really love this one too

k3vin k., Monday, 24 December 2018 21:50 (eleven months ago) link

first (?) ever song 'I love this life'. And it's turned out to be my favourite song of theirs.

I honestly don't know if I can think of a single artist/band whose first single (a-side and b-side taken together) is more perfectly fully realized, and totally sui generis. I've never heard pure joy captured more wonderfully and without any mawkishness in music than with "I Love This Life," and the world-weary wisdom and old-soul sadness of "The Second Act" is so moving (and rather shocking coming from a 25-year-old). And to think--they got *better* for the next decade, seems impossible.

Soundslike, Friday, 28 December 2018 01:19 (eleven months ago) link


always so nice to be reminded how amazing the blue nile is after having forgotten for a month or two.

macropuente (map), Friday, 28 December 2018 01:41 (eleven months ago) link

Wow. Maybe this made the rounds in 2016 and I missed it, but Paul Buchanan does a goosebumps-inducing take on Bowie's "I Can't Give Everything Away" with an orchestral arrangement that's very unusual and well executed. At 58:33:

(Also does "Ashes to Ashes" earlier)

Soundslike, Friday, 28 December 2018 02:09 (eleven months ago) link

I adore his solo album and have not heard anything about whether there will be another one. I certainly hope so

k3vin k., Friday, 28 December 2018 02:13 (eleven months ago) link

i’ve heard a lot about whether there will be another one

almost as much as i’ve heard about whether there’ll be a new scritti politti record lol

jolene club remix (BradNelson), Friday, 28 December 2018 04:26 (eleven months ago) link

xpost i posted about that proms at the time, buchanan's performances are by miles and miles the highlight, completely amazing

i need to try to figure out how to isolate those bits from the one long track I downloaded

valet doberman (Jon not Jon), Friday, 28 December 2018 18:47 (eleven months ago) link

four months pass...

A friend of mine took the 2nd half of Rags to Riches and made a balearic / downtempo re-edit.

brotherlovesdub, Monday, 20 May 2019 18:48 (six months ago) link

four months pass...

willem, Tuesday, 8 October 2019 09:35 (two months ago) link

1000 copies doesn’t seem like very many? Hats on vinyl is pretty in-demand on Discogs.

They might have a few left over copies of the third one though.

umsworth (emsworth), Tuesday, 8 October 2019 10:29 (two months ago) link

Prohibitively expensive to ship to the states, unfortunately, or else I'd be all over these

Paul Ponzi, Tuesday, 8 October 2019 13:32 (two months ago) link

Cheaper through

Cow_Art, Tuesday, 8 October 2019 15:43 (two months ago) link

Paul, I ordered all three of them on to America. It came to £56.37 in total. I don't like ordering from them in general, but it seemed like the cheapest way and I really didn't want to miss out.

kitchen person, Tuesday, 8 October 2019 15:45 (two months ago) link

Thanks! That's definitely more reasonable. I'm gonna order 'em (or at least Hats and Rooftops)

Paul Ponzi, Tuesday, 8 October 2019 15:51 (two months ago) link

this always seems to happen when i'm broke

american bradass (BradNelson), Tuesday, 8 October 2019 15:51 (two months ago) link shows £22.99 for each of the three discs, which'd be £68.97 plus S&H to the U.S. Was there a side deal that dropped it to £56.37?

the body of a spider... (scampering alpaca), Tuesday, 8 October 2019 16:14 (two months ago) link

Looks like they've increased in price slightly since last night. I got them at £20.53 each. I'm not sure how it works exactly but shipping is included in that price. I just put them all in my cart again and the final total is now showing as £62.52 including the shipping. I've ordered this way from them before as it somehow comes out cheaper.

kitchen person, Tuesday, 8 October 2019 16:26 (two months ago) link

Nice! Maybe they nix the VAT from the price for U.S. folk. Thanks for the tip/reply.

the body of a spider... (scampering alpaca), Tuesday, 8 October 2019 16:37 (two months ago) link

ordered! they're back down to £19 and change btw

Paul Ponzi, Tuesday, 8 October 2019 16:38 (two months ago) link

Blue Nile fans get to 6 music now (or next 30 days on catch up).

Dan Worsley, Sunday, 13 October 2019 14:25 (one month ago) link

^^ Was about to post this. Not really a fan of Guy Garvey, but some really good interviews with Buchanan and Calum Malcolm.

Stevie T, Sunday, 13 October 2019 14:56 (one month ago) link

On this 30th anniversary of 'Hats,' if you're needing more of the Blue Nile feeling, here's a mix I made a few years back that's a de facto tribute to them (and had a couple sequels):

Various – ‘The Dawning’

Part I

01 [00:00] The Blue Nile – “Over the Hillside” (Hats, 1989)
02 [05:00] Heaven 17 – “Let Me Go” (The Luxury Gap, 1983)
03 [09:16] Hot Gossip – “Morale” (Geisha Boys and Temple Girls, 1981)
04 [12:18] Dif Juz – “The Last Day” (Extractions, 1985)
05 [16:13] Tears for Fears – “Start of the Breakdown” (The Hurting, 1983)
06 [21:03] Mick Karn – “Tribal Dawn” (Titles, 1982)
07 [25:12] Thomas Dolby – “The Flat Earth” (The Flat Earth, 1984)
08 [31:34] Peter Gabriel – “Zaar” (Passions, 1989)
09 [35:56] Nona Hendryx – “Off the Coast of Love” (Skin Diver, 1989)
10 [40:23] Cocteau Twins – “Lazy Calm” (Victorialand, 1986)
11 [44:34] Talk Talk – “I Believe In You” (Spirit of Eden, 1988)

Part II

12 [50:40] Comsat Angels – “After the Rain” (Fiction, 1982)
13 [54:31] King Crimson – “Two Hands” (Beat, 1982)
14 [57:48] Bel Canto – “Without You” (White Out Conditions, 1987)
15 [61:43] Scott Walker – “Dealer” (Climate of Hunter, 1984)
16 [66:33] Scritti Politti – “Absolute” (Cupid & Psyche ’85, 1985)
17 [70:53] Arthur Russell – “This Is How We Walk On the Moon” (Another Thought, 1984)
18 [75:34] David Sylvian – “Orpheus” (Secrets of the Beehive, 1987)
19 [80:20] Durutti Column – “Love No More” (Vini Reilly, 1989)
20 [83:06] Kate Bush – “Never Be Mine” (The Sensual World, 1989)
21 [86:42] David Byrne – “Ghosts” (The Knee Plays, 1985)
22 [89:54] Colin Newman – “I Can Hear You” (Commercial Suicide, 1986)
23 [94:16] This Mortal Coil – “Ivy and Neet” (Filigree & Shadow, 1986)
24 [99:04] Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark – “Of All The Things We’ve Made” (Dazzle Ships, 1983)

[Total Time: 1:42:27]

Soundslike, Monday, 14 October 2019 00:06 (one month ago) link

Even that tracklist is great - and nice use of both Comsat Angels and (in particular) Bel Canto, neither of whom I think would occur to many people as points of comparison.

Tim F, Monday, 14 October 2019 00:26 (one month ago) link

poo, your mediafire link no longer works

akm, Monday, 14 October 2019 02:33 (one month ago) link

Still seems to work when I try it. . . Often when Mediafire links, if you just close the tab and click again, it works the next time. . .

Soundslike, Monday, 14 October 2019 19:35 (one month ago) link

one month passes...

"Family Life". Gets me every time.

Just finished AWAtR, now on PAL. Some bands are pilsners, The Blue Nile is a stout.

the body of a spider... (scampering alpaca), Monday, 25 November 2019 17:34 (two weeks ago) link

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