Talk Talk
The Colour of Spring


4.5
superb

Review

by ComeToDaddy USER (22 Reviews)
July 28th, 2014 | 20 replies


Release Date: 1986 | Tracklist

Review Summary: One of the most important transition albums of all time

Many people look back on Talk Talk as the band that pioneered post-rock. It's easy to look back favourably on them in retrospect, but as is the case with many genre pioneers, they weren't appreciated in their day and age. Despite the cult following both The Spirit of Eden and Laughing Stock have developed, they were largely passed off as pretentious and bloated at their time of release, when nobody could look back like we can to see the impact these albums would have on the modern musical landscape. It should be noted that the bands third album, The Colour of Spring is actually their best-selling album, containing their most popular singles while performing leaps and bounds over their previous releases in terms of both originality and quality. By doing away with the synth-heavy new wave the band had developed and taking influences from jazz and art-pop, the band created an eclectic melting pot that paved the way for it's successors without alienating fans, making it a defining album for the band and a landmark transition album for music as a whole.

Right from the get go, the band wastes no time establishing their new direction with “Happiness Is Easy”. Beginning with nothing but a repeating drum track, the track is immediately more bare-boned than anything in their back catalogue, but the slow and careful addition of layers to it's skeletal structure indicates a far more mature approach to their song-writing. The song slowly builds into a track somewhat more familiar to fans; Hollis' signature croon is still here, as are the addictive grooves and a memorable chorus, but there's something different. The expressive strings that ease in a little over a minute into the song, the extended instrumental sections, a far wider instrumental palate, all of these show a band striving to take an idea and push it to its limit. The singles of the album (#16 hit “Life's What You Make It” and #48 single “Living In Another World) also adhere to this pattern, bearing a loose similarity to past singles but containing more experimentation, more creativity and as such are a more satisfying experience overall. They are no less addictive when compared to past singles, but there is a whole new level of depth given to these new songs. However these tracks are the reason that, despite how far Talk Talk expanded their sound here, one foot was grounded firmly in the past.

The real meat of the album lies in between these more fan-friendly cuts. “April 5th” marks the most haunting ballad of the band's career, expanding on the morose sound played with in the second track and multiplying it tenfold. Throwing in a wider range of instruments (including a saxophone, a variophon, a dobro and an organ), a more creative song structure and some of Mark Hollis' most emotive vocals makes this the most unique track thus far in the bands career. This is their first big step in the direction of their future sound, and an important statement from the band. This statement is furthered by the 7th track, “Chameleon Day”. Easily the most experimental song on the album, this piece wouldn't be out of place on either of their following albums, consisting of nothing but an extremely sparse jazz atmosphere and Hollis' evocative croons. The final track is the real highlight though, standing as a perfect snapshot for the entire album and the perfect marriage of old and new styles. “Time It's Time” is a monumental epic that epitomises everything the band has accomplished thus far. With more creative ideas and even more unique sounds (harmonicas, melodicas and tribal chants are a focal point of the track), the band essentially hits all of the targets they were aiming for throughout the album. The track covers several different sounds and feelings, with lyrics like “Time it's time to live through the pain, now that it's over” that perfectly reflect the atmosphere. Even though the track can become pompous and overbearing with its exuberance, it was a necessary piece to the puzzle and the perfect close to the album. While one foot is still grounded in the past, this is the foot that was planted in the future, the foot that would pioneer a new genre and affect music as we know it today.

For a band with a legacy as important as Talk Talk's, it is difficult to appraise a past album without comparing it to their revered classics. These is no doubt that the albums succeeding this one were far more important to music today, but that should not diminish the success of this release, as well as its importance to the band itself. This was a masterful album in it's own right, the culmination of everything the band had built until this point, and the perfect transition into the sound they would become known for. It was the bands first successful experimentation and gave them the confidence needed to release albums as challenging as The Spirit of Eden and Laughing Stock in the future. The Colour of Spring stands as an integral part of Talk Talk's history, the most pivotal moment in their career and a brilliant album that is truly worth your time.



Recent reviews by this author
Jakob SinesWilliam Basinski The Disintegration Loops
Buckethead Hold Me Forever (In memory of my mom)Kangding Ray Solens Arc
Morning Glory War PsalmsTowers Bel Air Highrise Plantation
user ratings (182)
Chart.
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
ComeToDaddy
July 28th 2014


338 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This one goes out to KILL for letting me know this didn't already have a review. As always, constructive criticism is welcomed and appreciated. I've never reviewed an album as important as this one, and I felt like I referred a bit too much to their other albums, but it's all a learning experience (:

someguest
July 28th 2014


21240 Comments


I've always thought the opener on this album would be a great sample for a hip-hop track. Nice review.

ComeToDaddy
July 28th 2014


338 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

The opener has suuuch a nice groove to it, though I can't think of a rapper who could pull it off

Friday13th
July 28th 2014


2657 Comments


pos'd nice review. I've heard a couple of songs on pandora, but I'll check the rest out. Spirit of Eden is one of my favorite post-rock albums.

Digging: Triana - El Patio

dosia
July 28th 2014


70 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Finally! Good review, wonderful album. I've listened to it after Spirit and Laughing Stock and I remember to be somewhat disappointed, but it didn't last long. As you said - it's a masterful album in its own right... I think I like every track on this now, actually.

KILL
July 28th 2014


72131 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

almost bronzed my cacks when i saw this you rule so hard dude

so true about time its time, as good as anything on spirit or laughing i reckon

Digging: Throwing Muses - Throwing Muses

ComeToDaddy
July 29th 2014


338 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

nah man, thanks for giving me the heads up, this NEEDED some good treatment, shit's important. All 3 albums are excellent regardless of influence

I honestly didn't like time its time that much back when i started listening to this, but it grew on me so much, is at least top 3 Talk Talk songs for me now

Winesburgohio
July 29th 2014


1057 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

finally a review, and one that does it justice no less. bravo.

prefer this to Spirit of Eden honestly and Time is Time is one of my favorite TT jams to,o even if i can't sip beer ruminatively to it

Digging: Viet Cong - Viet Cong

ComeToDaddy
July 29th 2014


338 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

thanks friend! I can dig that, even though I wouldn't put this above the other 2 it's easily my most listened to TT album, can listen to this one any time in any mood

oltnabrick
August 21st 2014


31303 Comments


happiness is easy

Digging: Lil Debbie - Young Bitch

Hovse
August 21st 2014


933 Comments


really beautiful

Xar
September 1st 2014


1652 Comments


Is it a 5?

NorthernSkylark
September 1st 2014


4314 Comments


yeah, how good?

Digging: Polvo - Today's Active Lifestyles

DrMaximus
September 1st 2014


9815 Comments


GOTTA GIVE IT UP!!!

NorthernSkylark
September 1st 2014


4314 Comments


I DON'T BELIEVE YOU

Hovse
September 11th 2014


933 Comments


Time It's Time is incredible

someguest
September 14th 2014


21240 Comments


The entire album is pretty damn incredible.

kashmir23
October 3rd 2014


16 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Great album. There is that spring mood in it

Wadlez
October 24th 2014


4651 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Digging this as much as their later masterpieces.

Wadlez
October 24th 2014


4651 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Really surprising how great is it. Shouldn't have put it off.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy