Saturday, 9 March 2013

Howard Jones 'Pearl In The Shell'

Chart Peak: 7


The first song on this album I don't remember at all. In fact I was a bit surprised when I researched the Amazon link below and found that the 12" version was included on a compilation album I own on CD, although it transpires that my copy doesn't have that track after all (all but one track is identical so I presume it was a later change for contractual reasons). It does have the more familiar 'Like To Get To Know You Well', a song which I prefer but will never get to write about here.

'Pearl...' finds HoJo in his usual territory, exhorting us to realise our dreams, do the things we wanted to do, not be held back by fear etc., hence the central metaphor of a pearl remaining in a shell instead of coming out. The oyster might have a different opinion on this image, I suspect. The track is distinguished from most of his other output by a prominent saxophone, the one live instrument that seemed to be accepted in synthpop, played by Davey Gallagher of Ian Dury's Blockheads. It's distinctive enough for the video director to have based the entire premise around it, but it's not quite enough to make up for the unremarkable song which he'd done better before.

Also appearing on: Now 1, 2, 4
Available on: Human's Lib (Remastered Edition)

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