Monday, 27 April 2015

k.d. lang 'Constant Craving'

Chart Peak: 15 [originally 52 in 1992]
'Constant Craving' is the debut British hit single for the much adored Canadian k.d. lang... She has recently picked up no less than 4 Grammy nominations in the States as well as a Brits 'Best International Artist' nomination over here.
So adored is Ms Lang, indeed, that the sleeve note even writes her name in lower-case, the only exception to its ALL CAPS policy. Perhaps that's also one reason why she's seldom included in the canon of one-hit wonders, although this remains her only solo Top 40 single. Although she has had significant album success since, it's probably fair to say that in Britain at least she has hasn't become the major star that was once expected and that her record company probably hoped for.

'Constant Craving', though, has stood the test of time remarkably well, and surely stands as one of the best-arranged singles of the era, with clever use of piano, accordion and even vibraphone to give a timeless, luxurious but not overcrowded sound, whilst a strong bassline gives the track momentum. It's the setting for a lyric which isn't too specific to be universal but is also not fully understandable, because it's a questioning song after all. Perhaps the most effective section of all is the middle section where it seems to slow down and scratch its head as it ponders just what is the nature of desire. It's all so effective even the Rolling Stones copied the melody (on their 1997 hit 'Anybody Seen My Baby?'), allowing lang and co-writer Ben Mink a share of the royalties.

Also appearing on: Now 23 [with Roy Orbison]
Available on: Songbird

No comments:

Post a Comment