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|Locked in her world of daisy-chains and love and pain
Trying to find peace of mind
-- Wild-Hearted Woman, AAE
|All About Eve
(Julianne Regan & Co)
Initially formed by Julianne Regan (former Gene Loves Jezebel bassist), the talented guitarist Tim Bricheno, and bassist Andy Cousin, All About Eve released their first single D for Desire in 1985, but were only able to strike a record deal with Phonogram in 1987 after the release of the single Flowers in our Hair. Their first self-titled full-length album gathered some of their best songs ever including Shelter from the Rain featuring The Mission's Wayne Hussey on backing vocals, and their most acclaimed UK top 10 chart single Martha's Harbour. In 1989, AAE follow their debut with the equally praised second album 'Scarlet And Other Stories'. In 1990, Tim decided to leave AAE to join The Sisters of Mercy, leaving a huge void that was judiciously filled with The Church's own Marty Willson-Piper, enabling AAE to move along with the release of 'Touched By Jesus' in 1991. In 1992, the Eves parted ways with their label Phonogram, signed with MCA records, and released their last album 'Ultraviolet'. Ultraviolet departed from the dreamy acoustic ballads of AAE, and was marked with Marty's electric guitars and heavier drums... a combination that alienated their long devoted fans.
But apart from 'Ultraviolet', AAE have put together some of the most heartfelt, dreamy, folk-gothic ballads ever, always delivered with astouding conviction.
Said Sukkarieh, Musicfolio, 3/01
½ 1987: All About Eve
"All About Eve may have emerged fresh from the budding mid-80s Yorkshire Goth scene, but this album has more in common with the hippie folk-rock pioneered way back by the likes of Jethro Tull and Fairport Convention . These are songs of an England which probably never really existed - honeysuckle-scented meadows, gypsies and apple trees feature prominently - alternately blissfully naive and romantic, with Julianne Regan's exquisite voice soaring with childlike simplicity above the ocean of finely-honed guitar backing, and dark-edged, with undertones of unrequited love, abandonment and tragedy. The aural equivalent of Thomas Hardy - this is storytelling in the finest tradition of English folk music, with the occasional epic guitar riff to make the legends of hard rock jealous. With the advent of Evanescence and their ilk, the sound of All About Eve no longer sounds quite as dated as it might have done not so long ago; so for those who loved them first time around, give them another try, and don't ever lose that innocence. "
-- Milton Keynes, amazon.co.uk reviewer, 3/04
½ 1989: Scarlet and Other Stories
"... Road to Your Soul opens the LP on a glorious wave of keyboards and soaring vocals, some of Julianne's finest moments, with the chorus being lifted by Tim Bricheno's crunching rock guitar. As a first single, it bode well for the rest of the LP. The follow up single, December, was still a fine showcase for 'Scarlet' even if it did follow the exact same formula as 'Road..' The rest of the LP however, is a patchy affair to say the least. The track Scarlet stands up well, in the same vein as Martha's Harbour though less cloying, though there are songs which perhaps should have been relegated to b-sides. (...) "
-- Matt Blair, via Candytree
½ 1991:Touched by Jesus
"... Probably the most endearing quality to TBJ [Touched by Jesus] is the fact that even the ballads have a sublime hopefulness to them. Even as Regan asks the listener to feel the pain of loss and loneliness in Are You Lonely, she reveals to them that time and wisdom will ease the pain of a lost love as long as you promise yourself that you won't make the same mistakes twice.
It is interesting to chart the labels placed on AAE since their formation. First they were a goth band. Then they were a folk-indie type band. Now it appears they are a mainstream rock band, albeit with surreal lyrics. The instruments are played in straight ahead style with very few surprises. There is an overall consistency to the music that was missing before. "
-- Steve Schwarz, via Candytree
1992: Winter Words: Hits & Rarities
(...) Winter Words is both a celebration and a poignant reminder of the group's magical musical moments over the last five years. Appropriately, the album starts with their first independent single Our Summer and follows the chronological release pattern from '87 to '92 ending with Dreamer. also included at the end of the album are some rare tracks from early singles releases as well as previously unreleased material.
-- from the sleeve notes of Winter Words
"... Admittingly, this album does sound different than the other AAE albums. Gone are most of the dreamy, dance-in-the-meadow-like imageries that surround most of the other albums. There are very few traces of the "folk-goth" style the first two albums were filled with.
One of the main complaints is that Julianne's vocals are more or less drowned in the mix. The lyrics are hard to understand because of this, and there are no lyrics included in the booklet. The vocals are not as overdubbed as on previous albums either. 'Ultraviolet' is very much a guitar album. Lots of them, and very noisy. There are waterfalls of guitars crescending on top of an already existing wall of guitar-sound. There is no doubt Marty Willson-Piper had fun making this album.... "
--Morten Skjefte, via Candytree
½ 1999: Best of - All About Eve
Without a doubt, the most complete collection of AAE hit songs, handpicked by Julianne herself and spanning all of AAE's career.
2000: Fairy Light Nights
'Forever' and 'Will I Start to Bleed' are written by Marty during his solo career and 'Miss World' is a track Julianne wrote for her band Mice.
" ... Recorded at a variety of intimate venues played during the first half of 2000, this welcome release sees Julianne, Andy and Marty choosing a brave path with which to re-introduce themselves to their ever-attentive audience. There are no layers of electric guitar with which to hide any first night nerves, no crashing drums nor soaring keyboard lines to distract from any anticipation they may be feeling; just three musicians prepared to present themselves without an ounce of the pretence so common amongst their peers, playing a selection of songs for their eager audience as though they had never been away. Financial considerations aside, it is a courageous decision to lay themselves bare in this way. But then, All About Eve have always gone where their hearts took them. "
-- Chris Owen, via Candytree
2002: Return To Eden - The Early Recordings
"Andy, Tim and I have gathered the old Eden releases, b-sides and all, along with some pre-Phonogram demo's and are releasing it under the title "Return To Eden - the early recordings"). There will be some gems on there such as a demo version of In The Meadow which has different lyrics. The same goes for the studio version of Every Angel! Tim has done the sleeve notes and has designed the front and back cover photo's, so, it is obviously with his blessing. There you are, a totally band-sorted thing, not a bootleg, not a rip-off. I know a fair few of you will have the material, or, at least some of it, but a lot of it is hard to find and copies deteriorate. This has all been digitally improved. So for those of you who don't have the stuff or want 'better-quality' versions, this might be for you. "
-- Julianne Reagan
2002: Live and Electric at the Union Chapel
TrackListing: 1. Lady Moonlight 2. Freeze 3. Wishing The Hours Away 4. Martha's Harbour 5. Wild Hearted Woman 6. In The Clouds 7. Miss World 8. Are You Lonely 9. Interval 10. December 11. Forever 12. More Than The Blues 13. You Bring Your Love To Me 14. Shelter From The Rain 15. What Kind Of Fool 16. Outside The Sun
Recorded live and electric at the Union Chapel. The CD has a running time of just under 74 minutes.
TrackListing: 1.Let Me Go Home. 2.The Dreamer. 3.Somebody Said. 5.Blue Sonic Boy. 6.Daisychains. 7.I Don't Know. 8.Phased. 9.Ctrl - Alt - Delete. 10.Sodium. 11.Touched By Jesus. 12.Life On Mars.
Including 5 new tracks and a cover of David Bowie's Life On Mars. Release Date: June 9, 2003
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