Marc Almond – The Stars We Are [Expanded Edition] (2021)

Posted by Green on February 4, 2021as

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This is the first expanded edition re-issue of Marc Almond’s 4th solo album, “The Stars We Are”, since its original release in September 1988. This re-issue is a three disc set that, on its first disc, couples the original 10-track album with its initial release’s CD and cassette only bonus tracks and with the B-Sides of its associated singles. A second CD features all known extended and remix versions of the album tracks. A third disc, a DVD (Region 0, PAL), compiles all six of the promotional videos filmed for the album, including the Tim Pope directed ‘Bitter-Sweet’ and the alternate U.S. version video of ‘Tears Run Rings’ as directed by Peter ‘Sleazy’ Christopherson of Coil and Throbbing Gristle fame.

“The Stars We Are” was the first of two albums recorded for Parlophone and was Marc Almond’s return to a highly infectious and chartable pop. The first single ‘Tears Run Rings’ confirmed the revitalised, unabashed pop that characterised the record and reached #26 on the UK Singles Chart. But it was the third single, ‘Something’s Gotten Hold Of My Heart’, a duet with the 1967 hit song’s original singer Gene Pitney that provided the commercial zenith of the album; the single reaching #1 in the UK Singles Chart for 4 consecutive weeks in early 1989.

The album was recorded with an assembled band ‘La Magia’ which comprised of former Willing Sinners members Annie Hogan, Billie McGee and Steve Humphries as a core unit. The album is a shimmering arc of musical textures, compulsive melodrama and euphoric uplift. As well as further singles ‘Bitter-Sweet’ (UK#40) and ‘Only The Moment’ (UK#45), the album contains an homage to goth sensibilities in ‘Your Kisses Burn’, a duet with Nico (her last ever studio recording), as well as an extravagant mini-operetta, ‘Kept Boy’, a duet with cult chanteuse Agnes Bernelle.

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