April 16, 2008

Sophisti-twee

"For your bedroom needs, we sell everything but the girl". That sign in the window of a local furniture shop inspired Tracey Thorn and Ben Watt in 1982 to name their band. The first time I ever heard the band was 13 years later, when they scored massively with their international hit song 'Missing'. I liked, but never investigated further. Until some three years ago.

Before Everything But The Girl, Tracey Thorn built a name on a smaller scale with shambly minimalist indiepop group Marine Girls. Their debut album 'Beach party' is, however amateurish its songs and performances are, now seen as one of the pillars of the indiepop scene. It was quite a huge step from there to Everything But The Girl's wonderful debut album 'Eden'.

Leaving the twee sounds of Marine Girls behind to step into a world of bossa nova and chamber jazz pop, the feeling stays as intimate. Thorn's warm vocals are in tune now, and the quality of the songs is lightyears removed from the very nice, but almost childish compositions from only a couple of years before.

After 'Eden' Everything But The Girl had (and still has) a career of hits and misses, but their debut is my favourite. If you only know them from their later hits (I think in the UK they had some chart succes before 'Missing'), you might be as pleasantly surprised as I was.

Download (Mediafire)
1. Marine Girls - In love
2. Marine Girls - Love to know
3. Everything But The Girl - Even so
4. Everything But The Girl - I must confess

5 comments:

Peewit said...

I discovered your blog thanks to your Trixie's post and have stayed for the ride but this is the first time I've been tempted to comment. EBTG has always been a favourite band of mine. I bought Eden on the day of release obn the strength of the Single Each and Everyone. I then went back and investigated the Marine Girls and bought all the EBTG stuff as it was released. My favourite has always been "Baby the Stars Shine Bright". If you haven't heard it Ben Watt's solo album "on Box hill" is well worth a listen.

Dennis said...

Ooh, no I haven't heard that. Thanks! Is it in the same style as EBTG?

I haven't heard all of EBTG's albums (and none of the most recent ones). There's plenty for me to discover, still!

Peewit said...

It is more Marine Girls than EBTG but if you like Soft Touch off Eden you'd like the solo album.

takethepills said...

haha
that's true!
i love their first album too.
great blog!!!
:]

Ken said...

Hmmmm, I've never really heard too much EBTG (only the hits...which are good). But when I was about....18 or 20...I stubled upon tracys solo album and also Bens (North Marine Drive). simple stuff, but very beautiful and so clearly writing about one another. I still love them 25 years later.