Saturday, February 23, 2008

503. Madness - Rise And Fall (1982)

Track Listing

1. Rise And Fall
2. Tomorrow's Just Another Day
3. Blue Skinned Beast
4. Primrose Hill
5. Mr Speaker Gets The Word
6. Sunday Morning
7. Our House
8. Tiptoes
9. New Delhi
10. That Face
11. Calling Cards
12. Are You Coming (With Me)
13. Madness (It's All In The Mind)


So we come to an album which is a bit more than a little inspired by The Kinks' Village Green Preservation Society, hell even the album title gives a nod to another Kinks album title. And then the concept is the same as many of the Kinks' albums, vignettes of British life.

Of course the whole thing is updated to the eighties, an era that for a certain level of society in Britain was just as depressing as the late 60's, with Thatcher fucking up the life of the common working man. So, much like The Jam, here come Madness with their musings on life in Britain.

The strange thing about British nostalgia, and I say this as an outsider who has lived here for a while, is the strange mix of nostalgia and disgust, the nostalgia for really shit times, because really they never had it as good, but wasn't it quaint when sugar was rationed?

Madness eschews their Ska past here and go for a more openly pop album, and the results are quite good, even if originality is not the buzzword in terms of concept, the arrangements kind of make up for it, with their heavy use of brass again giving that nostalgic feel for gazebo concerts and shit. It works.

Track Highlights

1. Our House
2. Primrose Hill
3, Madness (It's All In The Mind)
4. Rise And Fall

Final Grade



From Wikipedia:

This album saw Madness at their most experimental, exhibiting a range of musical styles including jazz, English music hall and Eastern influences. NME described it at the time of its release as "The best Madness record". It has often been retrospectively described as a concept album. Though the album was never released in the USA, several tracks were later placed on the compilation Madness, including "Our House", their biggest stateside hit.

Our House:

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