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ALBUM BY ALBUM EURYTHMICS

THE MOST SUCCESSFUL MAL E- FEMAL E DUO OF AL L T IME MOVED FROM POST - PUNK TO A SOUL FUL SYNTH- POP SOUND THAT THRI L LED MI L L IONS
© Peter Ashworth

Teaming up once again with legendary producer Conny Plank who they’d worked with previously in The Tourists, Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart’s first step as Eurythmics is a bracing shot in the arm for those expecting their cultured synthsoul style that would bring them worldwide fame.

Instead, their Colognerecorded debut In The Garden is a gutsy post-punk collection that boasts muscle, angular riffs, and a new wave vigour.

Its adventurous Krautrock producer Plank was already a veteran of Kraftwerk’s iconic Autobahn as well as fellow German acts Neu and Cluster.

Samples thread their way through English Summer – chirping crickets, a fire engine and children playing – in a near Pink Floyd-style sound collage, though the most striking thing about this opener is its dark, brooding backing track.

There’s the brusque guitar stomp of Belinda with Lennox’s multi-layered vocals sitting atop some post-punk guitars and heavy riffing of Stewart. It feels like a more refined cousin of Keith Levene’s razorcut riffing on PiL’s Public Image single from three years earlier.

The icy synth textures of Take Me To Your Heart prove to be the first signpost to their eventual electronic direction and the wonderfully stark intro to Shes Invisible Now, while a bit dated these days, also hints at the roadmap ahead. A clear homage to Kraftwerk, there’s an almost Kubrickian tone to the lyrics which tell of a woman subsumed by technology: “She’s a mathematician; Calculator, Counting daily; Counting forever.”

The frantic squall of Caveman Head is a highlight, a dizzying mix of skittering drums, spiralling guitars and a woozy vocal from Lennox. Meanwhile, the French language oddity Sing-Sing’s keyboard refrain is certainly on nodding acquaintance with Gary Numan’s Cars.

Plank’s pulling power meant that D.A.F. drummer Robert Görl came on board to supply the motorik groove alongside Can duo Holger Czukay and Jaki Liebezeit. Blondie’s Clem Burke also contributed to the album.

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About Classic Pop

This month, we have a world exclusive with Adam Ant as he prepares for a full-album tour of his experimental solo debut Friend Or Foe. It’s a must-read interview packed full of surprises. The pop mavericks keep on coming elsewhere, too – our classic album is The KLF’s seminal LP, The White Room, and we catch up with the inimitable Wendy James as she unveils new double album Queen High Straight. We meet the people behind Pet Shop Boys’ dazzling new stage show Musik, a return to the world of Billie Trix; playwright Jonathan Harvey and star Frances Barber fill us in on what to expect. Peter Hook tells us the story behind Joy Division’s Unknown Pleasures – 40 years on, the band’s debut is still a work of staggering genius. In our album-by-album feature, we take an in-depth look at the recording career of Eurythmics and we meet Will Young to find out how he’s beaten his anxiety issues to create new studio album, Lexicon. Legendary producer Stephen Street talks us through his life in vinyl and we take a peek inside a new book on Soft Cell to uncover unseen photos of the synth-pop duo. Our packed new album reviews section includes Gary Daly, Shura, Friendly Fires, Mabel and more. On the reissues front, we serve up a selection including The Lightning Seeds, Belinda Carlisle, Big Country and Bonnie Tyler. In our live reviews section, we round up our Glastonbury Festival best bits plus check out gigs by Spice Girls, Elton John, Tears For Fears, Pink and more.