Tuesday, 23 June 2009

Comin' Up Disco

Dusty Springfield's expressive vocals veered between two styles: an avalanche of tremmoring, spectacular heartache that could melt into desperate puddles of distilled melancholia; or breathlessly seductive and amused by life's natural charm. Her envigorating recording of Another Little Piece of My Heart is an example of Dusty clearing the skies with joy and rueful self-awareness. The rapture is a far cry from the 'tragic Dusty' stereotype. In fact, washing ashore from her 'wilderness years' Dusty released a decent album in 1978 hopefully-titled It Begins Again, containing the rusty electro disco stomper That's The Kind of Love I've Got For You. Bristling like unsightly lady-stubble, her vocals on the first verse are androgynous and ribbed and suggest a recording booth full of dense fag smoke: the sensitivity is now like marmalade being scraped onto burnt toast. The galloping chorus and verses give Dusty her first unequivocal dance record and it is a lost treasure in a catalogue of first-rate recordings bigger than her boufant. Most music fans are well educated in her story, but her introduction to disco always surprises me and gives insight to the sunnier disposition of her character - what's the point of lying on the floor for hours if you can't pick yourself up and triumpantly please your gay fans. The track was performed, but the album merely nudged the UK album charts at number 41.

Watch auntie Dusty hand over the torch to 'good girl' Sheena Easton and warn her to stay off drugs, bad diet and plastic surgery. Sheena doesn't have a clue what is in store for her (her Glaswegian accent is to die for):

I actually own the re-release of It Begins Again on CD as well as on LP - I could not resist having gigantic Dusty artwork where she looks faintly like an Indian tiger (just me?).

No comments: