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Talk Talk - The Colour Of Spring CD (album) cover


Talk Talk


Crossover Prog

3.79 | 211 ratings

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4 stars Back when Talk Talk released their first two albums, I was in my sympho infancy and raving over all things Floyd, Rush, ELP and Yes. So Talk Talk were the epitome of despicable music to me, the kind of stuff my sister listened to. Yuk! But that's a long time ago and when I stumbled upon their later albums at the end of the 80's, I couldn't believe my ears. This was an entirely different band, full of emotion, rich instrumentation, freely flowing compositions. This was Music with a capital M. The Colour of Spring is the first Talk Talk album that inspires for a song by song overview, which is always a good sign.

Happiness is Easy is a beautiful and amazing song. An entrancing minimalist rhythm that could have come off a Peter Gabriel or a Can album sets the pace. The instrumentation mainly sticks to laid-back drum and bass with touches of acoustic guitar and piano. There are a few swelling outburst with organ, saxophone and even a children's choir. It's still a verse chorus song at heart but at 6.30 minutes, that structure has become less visible, music has taken over. I Don't Believe In You follows a similar pattern. An entrancing slow groove, captivating melodies and a tasty and inventive approach to instrumentation. It's hard to believe how these young guys matured in a few years. Of course an array of guest musicians helps out a hand.

Life's What You Make It is the best known song from this album and one of my favourites, those few strokes of lead guitar are too good to be true. I wouldn't call this song commercial though as it didn't follow the dominating sound or the conventions of pop that were dominating the scene then. It's always interesting to see bands doing unexpected and new things and still reach huge audiences, in spite of the attempts of record labels to serve people the same dish every day.

April 5th and Chameleon Day are historic moments, especially in respect to the development of post-rock. This couldn't' be further removed from anything else from 1986, the vocal melodies have become more of a suggestion then a repeated phrase, almost as if Hollis improvises over the abstract sounds and the slow shuffle. The two following albums would expand this foundation, but here is where Talk Talk had their revelation and found their true identity. Of course nothing stands entirely on its own in art, so this can sure be traced back to jazz and experimental rock, but still there isn't much in my pre-86 rock catalogue that sounds like this.

Living In Another World and Give It Up are more up-beat and slightly commercial songs. While adequate they bring down the average level a bit. Time It's Time is more adventurous and original.

This album combines the catchy song writing of the first albums with the sophisticated arrangements, the originality and experimentation of the years to come. For that reason it's the most accomplished and the essential Talk Talk album for me. 4.5 stars.

Bonnek | 4/5 |


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