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Allison Moyet & Vince Clarke
"Vince Clarke had
left Depeche Mode, the band he had helped to form
and take into the charts, in 1981, after penning most of the 'Speak And Spell'
album.(...) Alison had reached a similar crossroads with her R&B covers
band The Screaming Abdabs, trawling the same Essex circuit and rarely reaching
In a brief but extraordinary career, Yazoo forged an unlikely partnership between electronics and the blues to create some of the most sublime pop music of the early Eighties. Vince Clarke and Genevieve Alison Moyet (otherwise known as Alf) were together as Yazoo little over a year (1982-3) but from the instant stardom of their debut single 'Only You' onwards they made records that captured the imagination of everyone from Smash Hits to the Daily Telegraph. Their albums 'Upstairs At Eric's' and 'You And Me Both' still define a time in pop history when experimentalism and creativity broke through commercial barriers and the most unlikely people could become pop stars. (...)
From their swan song onwards, Alison signed a prestigious solo deal and went on to more success with her album 'Alf', while Vince went on to form The Assembly with Eric. But Clarke's greatest success came after he auditioned Peterborough born Andy Bell in 1985 and found himself partnering another singer of wayward genius. Erasure were born, of similarly unlikely elements to those of Yazoo."
1982: Upstairs at Eric's
"Yaz was an interesting blend of Moyet's smoky blues and jazz tinged vocals with Vince Clarke's digital disco. Moyet's voice alone was instrument enough, and the melodies here perfectly showcased her incredible range. Upstairs easily moved between energetic dance floor exuberance (Don't Go and Good-bye Seventies), blues-inspired wailers (Midnight), and icy electronic minimalism (Winter Kills). It was an explosion of a debut, touching upon '80s gay disco, synth pop, and diva-ism in one fell swoop. The CD closes with the overlooked Didn't I Bring Your Love Down, an infectious barn burner with a call/response break that blows the roof off of Eric's little techno-pop room. "
--Steve Gdula, amazon.com
½ 1983: You & Me both
Aside from the brilliant opening track Nobody's Diary, Yazoo's second and last album doesn't have much to offer but the repetitive synth arrangements sounding oh! too familiar by then. Ode to Boy and Softly Over's romanticism come close to comparison with Yazoo's first hit single Only You, highlighting Moyet's powerful vocal performance.
-- Said Sukkarieh, musicfolio.com, 4/01
1999: Best of Yaz
A collection of the classic hits covering Yazoo's short career. Includes club dance remixes of Situation, Only You and Don't Go.
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