Showing posts with label Prefab Sprout. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Prefab Sprout. Show all posts

Saturday, 22 November 2014

Don't sing - Prefab Sprout

The band Prefab Sprout debuted in 1982 with their self-released single 'Lions in my own garden: exit someone'. Two years later, they debuted on Kitchenware Records with this single, 'Don't sing'.

Taken from their debut album 'Swoon', released in March 1984. This album has a markedly different, and less accessible, musical feel than their later works, featuring intricate guitar-based compositions that drew comparisons with Aztec Camera and Steely Dan.
My collection: 7" single no. 5438
Found: unknown
Tracks: 'Don't sing' / 'Green Isaac II'

Sunday, 28 February 2010

Looking for Atlantis - Prefab Sprout

Although Prefab Sprout's fifth album 'Jordan: the comeback' had a running time of 63 minutes, it was released on a single vinyl disc, with each side running just over 30 minutes. With 19 tracks, it was a real treat for fans, but a broader audience was also attracted to it, making this the second album by Prefab Sprout to reach the UK albums top 10.

'Looking for Atlantis', the first track on the album, was released as the first single in August 1990. It reached number 51 in the UK singles chart, and although the single was released in Europe, it had no commercial success over there.

My collection: 7" single no. 4588
Found: Velvet Vinyl Outlet, Leiden, February 26, 2010
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Looking for Atlantis' / 'Michael'

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Cars and girls - Prefab Sprout

'Cars and girls' was the first single taken from Prefab Sprout's 1988 album 'From Langley Park to Memphis'. The song is a response to Bruce Springsteen's perceived lyrical style and alleged narrow song repertoire. McAloon suggests that Springsteen's worldview is too restricted and that 'some things hurt more, much more, than cars and girls'.

The single reached number 44 in the UK singles chart. It is one of their best known songs despite this comparatively low chart placing.

My collection: 7" single no. 4173
Found: Chelsea Records, Antwerpen, November 8, 2009
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Cars and girls' / 'Vendetta'

Thursday, 21 May 2009

The sound of crying - Prefab Sprout

Released as the first single from the compilation album 'A life of surprises: the best of Prefab Sprout', 'The sound of crying' was the biggest success Prefab Sprout had in the UK since 'The king of Rock 'n' Roll' reached number 7 in the UK.

'The sound of crying' was also more successful than the four subsequent singles taken from the compilation album. This single peaked at number 23, but it was only the first time in four years that the band cracked the top 30 again.

My collection: 7" single no. 1674
Found: Melody Maker, Den Haag, June 27, 1992
Cost: 6 guilders
Tracks: 'The sound of crying (edit)' / 'The sound of crying (full version)'

Friday, 1 May 2009

All the world loves lovers - Prefab Sprout

'All the world loves lovers' was released in 1992 as the third single from the compilation album 'A life of surprises'. After the success of previous single 'If you don't love me' (peaking at number 33 in the UK singles chart) the chart performance of this single disappointed: it only managed a lowly number 61.

I was very surprised to find that this single was 'Made in Holland'. The band had never had a hit in this country. Later I understood that Dutch record pressing plants had started to manufacture for the UK in the diminishing market for vinyl records.

My collection: 7" single no. 2090
Found: Record fair, April 16, 1994
Cost: 2 guilders
Tracks: 'All the world loves lovers' / 'Machine gun Ibiza'

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

We let the stars go - Prefab Sprout

'We let the stars go' was the second single taken from Prefab Sprout's 1990 album 'Jordan: the comeback'. The album was, like the single, produced by Thomas Dolby, and nominated for a Brit Award.

This single comes with a press release from Germany, which states: ''We let the stars go', mit der Prefab Sprout einmal mehr unter Beweis stellen, dass es nicht unbedingt immer der lauten Töne bedarf, um eine Erfahrung mitzuteilen'.

My collection: 7" single no. 3656
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, April 18, 2009
Cost: 0,8 euro
Tracks: 'We let the stars go' / 'Cruel'

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Golden hits volume 2 - Prefab Sprout

I bought this 'golden' single during the first record fair I ever went to. I thought it was a great find, because it featured 'Goodbye Lucille', which I thought was an earlier version of the single 'Johnny Johnny', which I'd bought a couple of years before. As it turned out, it was pretty much the same as that single, only the title was different.

Still, this is an interesting little EP, because of the colour of course, but also because of the great selection of hit singles. Although 'hit singles' might be stretching that term a bit: none of these tracks made the UK top 40.

My collection: 7" single no. 1220
Found: Record fair, Den Haag, April 22, 1990
Cost: 6 guilders
Tracks: 'Golden calf (edit)', 'Faron Young' / 'Goodbye Lucille no. 1', 'Hey Manhattan'

Saturday, 14 March 2009

Life of surprises - Prefab Sprout

Prefab Sprout recorded 'Life of surprises' in 1985, just when 'When love breaks down' finally became a hit after its fourth re-release. The record company shelved the album with 'Life of surprises' on it. The track only resurfaced in 1993, when Prefab Sprout's greatest hits compilation was released.

The single was a success, peaking at number 24 in the UK singles chart. The B-side featured the band's only top 10 hit: 'The king of rock 'n' roll', originally released in 1988.

My collection: 7" single no. 1899
Found: Record fair, May 2, 1993
Cost: 2 guilders
Tracks: 'Life of surprises' / 'The king of rock 'n' roll'

Saturday, 21 February 2009

If you don't love me - Prefab Sprout

In 1992, Prefab Sprout released their greatest hits album 'A life of surprises'. The album reached number 3 on the UK albums chart. It was a chance for me to get my favourite tracks 'When love breaks down', 'Appetite' and 'Johnny Johnny' on cd. And as has happened to me before: once I started playing the cd a lot, I started looking for more singles.

During a visit to London, I came across this single, 'If you don't love me', one of the nicest tracks from the compilatoin cd. I was very happy to see that a remixed version appeared on the B-side. It didn't take me long to make the decision to buy this single.

My collection: 7" single no. 1756
Found: Tower Records, London, October 19, 1992
Cost: 2 pounds
Tracks: 'If you don't love me' / 'If you don't love me (String driven thing)'

Thursday, 19 February 2009

Johnny Johnny - Prefab Sprout

Another impressive single by Prefab Sprout, released from the album 'Steve McQueen'. On that album it was entitled 'Goodbye Lucille #1'. This song is a tense affair, and only lets go in the last few seconds, when the track fades out.

I was fascinated by this song when it was released, and played it dozens of times after I found this single at a discount price. In my book, it's still one of Prefab Sprout's best songs ever.

My collection: 7" single no. 399
Found: Disco Market, Den Haag, 1985
Cost: 2 guilders
Tracks: 'Johnny Johnny' / 'Wigs'
Download: 'Johnny Johnny' / 'Wigs'

Friday, 30 January 2009

Appetite - Prefab Sprout

After getting hooked on 'When love breaks down', Prefab Sprout had definitely caught my attention. When 'Appetite' was released as the next single, I was in the shop to get it as soon as possible. I wasn't surprised when the single didn't chart in the Netherlands - as Prefab Sprout was a typically English phenomenon - but I am still amazed that this single didn't chart in the UK as well.

'Appetite' was taken from Prefab Sprout's second album 'Steve McQueen', which reach number 21 in the UK album chart.

My collection: 7" single no. 337
Found: LP Top 100, Den Haag, 1985
Cost: 5,5 guilders
Tracks: 'Appetite' / 'Heaven can wait'

Saturday, 24 January 2009

When love breaks down - Prefab Sprout

As written earlier, 'When love breaks down' was released four times by CBS Records before it finally reached the UK Singles chart in November 1985. This is one of those attempts, with a different sleeve than the other releases. The B-side featured the track 'The yearning loins', whereas other releases feature the track 'Diana' on the B-side.

I bought this single because the sleeve reminded me of the video for this single, which I'd seen so many times back in 1984.

My collection: 7" single no. 2491
Found: House of Rhythm, London, October 30, 1995
Cost: 60p
Tracks: 'When love breaks down' / 'The yearning loins'
Download: here

Monday, 19 January 2009

Hey Manhattan! - Prefab Sprout

After 'When love breaks down' I thought I would follow every move of Prefab Sprout, but that didn't last for very long. They released 'Hey Manhattan!' in 1988, but I didn't find out about this song and many others until they released 'A life of surprises', a compilation album featuring all their greatest hits - and then some - in 1992.

So I bought quite a lot of their singles after this compilation album, and 'Hey Manhattan!' was one of them. I actually bought this limited edition with a full colour poster in England. I am always a sucker for special editions. And then there are few songs as beautifully produced as this one.

My collection: 7" single no. 2680
Found: Record Exchange, London, July 2, 1996
Cost: 1 pound
Tracks: 'Hey Manhattan!' / 'Tornado'
Download: here

Monday, 29 December 2008

When love breaks down - Prefab Sprout

'When love breaks down' was released four times by CBS Records before it finally reached the UK Singles chart in November 1985. And even then it managed to peak at number 25. Why it was so difficult for this single to become a hit, I'll never understand. The record company did their best, anyway. There are several different sleeves around for this single, and the double single which I found recently should also have helped. It includes four tracks spread over two discs.

My collection: 7" single no. 3465
Found: Record fair, Utrecht, November 29, 2008
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'When love breaks down' / 'Diana' // 'The yearning loins' / 'Donna Summer'
Download: here
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