Tuesday, 26 July 2011

London Boys - Requiem (1988/ No. 4/ 21 weeks/ Warners)

Oh, poor dear departed London Boys, two huge hits in 1989, both dead in a car crash in 1996, forgotten in 2011.

This is gloriously crass mid-tempo Hi-NRG with a very effective contrast between the guttural Euro "rapping" and the speeded-up 1969 ballad choruses.

It sounds like an accelerated Yello, if such a thing were divinely possible.

It is crammed with diverse hooks which should jar horribly, but don't; the cathedral organ, the echoing and plangent desert guitar, the 'Johnny Remember Me' spectral chorus, the constant -

"Never gonna get enough
Never gonna get enough"

- and, underneath everything, the stammering "I - I - I - I love you”s, giving the song a vulnerability and heart that makes you feel that something is at stake.

I'm not entirely sure that they'd looked up the word requiem in the dictionary when they wrote it, but it doesn't matter because this is a great affirming YES! to life and love - performed by two sadly dead men.

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