Since I've been delving into my CD collection as I fill my iPod, I've been stumbling across several of my favorites of the early 1990s. Yes, you probably haven't heard of many of them but oddly enough each of these albums are amazing with few throwaway tracks. Only one released a second album but if you stumble across oneof these, it's worth the money.
There was a girl that took tennis lessons from my father before I moved to Reno. My collection wasn't as extensive as it would be later (I didn't start collecting CDs until after 1991.) I wound up showing her a lot of different music but one day she brought in Blue Train's The Business Of Dreams and I didn't know what to think of it (I mean, look at the cover.) But after a few listens, I knew it for what it was: a well crafted and polished Pop/Rock effort. Their first single, "All I Need Is You," did land in the U.S. singles chart but the second single, "The Hardest Thing," was their final release.
After I moved to Reno, I spent a lot of time listening to the radio. There was a new "Alternative" station just starting that would play a lot of classic 80's songs mixed with a few newer artists and newer songs by Morrissey, Depeche Mode, etc... They filled my CD collection pretty quickly as they gave away CDs as the DJs made live appearances and during a weird type of bingo where you mark the time a song was played during the week and first one in would win (I think the main prize was $250 or so) but runners up (who had a life and couldn't listen all day) would win CDs. One of those winnings was The Sighs' What Goes On. The big single from the album was, "Think About Soul," and received decent airplay... but more when they came to perform in town. I went and had a great time (a few female friends of mine went ga ga over the band members.) Strong vocal harmonies, clean production with little sparks of empathetic lyrical brilliance (ok, there's some cliche' moments but you get sucked in well before you notice it.) I recently noticed they released a follow-up album, Different, in 1996 before breaking up. I might have to look for it.
Lastly but not less important are The Men. Their self-titled debut album was something I picked up in an independent record store's bargain bin. I had heard their single, "Church Of Logic, Sin & Love," several times and figured it'd be worth a less than $5 risk. I was quite right. Still a little weird for the band to be called The Men when half of them are women but maybe it's all about the dudes. It's say it is kind of Blues/Rock/Pop with a little spoken word (mainly in the single.) Several of the songs like the ballads, "I Built My House This Way," seem fresh to me every time I hear them. The closest I could come would be to say this was an American version of Crowded House with a tad more Blues. Really wish they recorded a follow-up but they disbanded after their debut.
The good thing about having all my music in my hand at any time is that I can now revisit these a bit easier. Instead of hoping someone had heard a song before when talking to someone, I can just remedy that then and there. Been planning to post something like this for awhile as proof that I'm may be fixated on the 80's but not stuck.