Monday, October 18, 2010

Situation by Yaz

Yaz, or Yazoo as they're known in the UK, was the group Vince Clark formed after leaving Depeche Mode early on and teaming up with old school friend Alison Moyet. I say "old" school friend, but keep in mind that in late 1981 when they formed, Clark and Moyet had barely turned 21, and clearly they hadn't actually been out of school for very long. Their debut album Upstairs At Eric's, referring to the time spent at producer Eric Radcliffe's place during production of the album, actually doesn't contain the song "Situation" on the UK version, where it was merely the b-side to "Don't Go." This seems odd to us in the US, where it featured prominantly on the album, and is in fact one of the highlights of the CD. It's also the song that is most remembered by Yaz these days, although "Only You" and "Don't Go" had some modest chart success, and "Too Pieces", "Bad Connection", "Midnight", "In My Room" and "Bring Your Love Down (Didn't I)" are also all standout tracks.

Actually, with a tracklist that impressive, it's not surprising that I highly recommend Upstairs At Eric's all round. It's good stuff. Not cold and futuristic like some of the other synthpop that had been out recently, Yaz embraced a warm, soulful sound that was also becoming more mainstream with other acts as well, and proved that electronic music was, in fact, made by humans after all.

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