More Songs About Buildings and Food

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More Songs About Buildings and Food
Studio album by Talking Heads
Released July 21, 1978 (1978-07-21)
Recorded March–April 1978 at Compass Point Studios, Nassau, Bahamas
Genre Post-punk, new wave
Length 41:32
Label Sire
Producer Brian Eno and Talking Heads
Talking Heads chronology
Talking Heads: 77
(1977)
More Songs About Buildings and Food
(1978)
Fear of Music
(1979)
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 5/5 stars[1]
Robert Christgau (A)[2]
Rolling Stone 5/5 stars[3]

More Songs About Buildings and Food is the second studio album by the American rock band Talking Heads, released in July 1978 and the first of a string of three co-produced by Brian Eno. The album was significantly more popular than their first, Talking Heads: 77. The band's blend of funky bass, bubblegum, country, reggae and punk influences, with David Byrne's unique voice, established the group as a critical success known for their live shows, but still with disappointing album sales.

Concerning the album's title:

"When we were making this album I remembered this stupid discussion we had about titles for the last album," Tina smirked. "At that time I said, 'What are we gonna call an album that's just about buildings and food?' And Chris said, 'You call it more songs about buildings and food.'"[4]

However XTC frontman Andy Partridge claimed in a tweet that he gave the title to David Byrne.[5]

More Songs About Buildings and Food was released on July 21, 1978.[6] It peaked at number 29 on the Billboard Pop Albums chart. The album's one single, a cover of the Al Green hit "Take Me to the River", peaked at number 26 on the Pop Singles chart in 1979.

In 2003 the album was ranked number 382 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. In 2006 it was ranked the 45th best album of the 1970s by Pitchfork Media. It was ranked number 57 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the greatest albums of 1967-1987.

In 2005 it was re-released and remastered by Warner Music Group on their Warner Bros., Sire and Rhino Records labels in DualDisc format, with four bonus tracks on the CD side ("Stay Hungry" (1977 version), alternate versions of "I'm Not in Love" and "The Big Country", and the 'Country Angel' version of "Thank You for Sending Me an Angel"). The DVD-Audio side includes both stereo and 5.1 surround high resolution (96 kHz/24bit) mixes, as well as a Dolby Digital version and videos of the band performing "Found a Job" and "Warning Sign". In Europe, it was released as a CD+DVDA two disc set rather than a single DualDisc. The reissue was produced by Andy Zax with Talking Heads.

Cover Artwork[edit]

The front cover of the album, conceived by Byrne and executed by artist Jimmy De Sana, is a photomosaic of the band comprising 529 close-up Polaroid photographs.[6]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by David Byrne, except where noted. 

Side one
No. Title Length
1. "Thank You for Sending Me an Angel"   2:11
2. "With Our Love"   3:30
3. "The Good Thing"   3:03
4. "Warning Sign" (Byrne, Chris Frantz) 3:55
5. "The Girls Want to Be With the Girls"   2:37
6. "Found a Job"   5:00
Side two
No. Title Length
7. "Artists Only" (Byrne, Wayne Zieve) 3:34
8. "I'm Not in Love"   4:33
9. "Stay Hungry" (Byrne, Frantz) 2:39
10. "Take Me to the River" (Al Green, Mabon "Teenie" Hodges) 5:00
11. "The Big Country"   5:30
2005 reissue bonus tracks
No. Title Length
12. "Stay Hungry (1977 Version)" (Byrne, Frantz) 3:45
13. "I'm Not in Love (Alternate Version)"   5:15
14. "The Big Country (Alternate Version)"   5:01
15. "Thank You for Sending Me an Angel ("Country Angel" Version)"   2:12

Personnel[edit]

Harrison (L) and Byrne (R) with Talking Heads in August 1978 at Jay's Longhorn Bar, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Talking Heads
Additional personnel
  • Brian Eno – synthesizers, piano, guitar, percussion, background singing
  • Tina & the Typing Pool – backing vocals on "The Good Thing"
Recording personnel

Charts[edit]

Album

Year Chart Position
1978 Billboard Pop Albums 29
UK Albums 21

Singles

Year Single Chart Position
1978 "Take Me to the River" Billboard Pop Singles 26

Certifications[edit]

Organization Level Date
RIAA – USA Gold November 16, 1983

References[edit]

  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ Robert Christgau review
  3. ^ Rolling Stone review
  4. ^ Barbara Charone (October, 1979). "More Songs About Typing and Vacuuming". Creem, n.p.c. link. Retrieved June 17, 2010.
  5. ^ Twitter - @xtcfans
  6. ^ a b Gimarc, George, Punk Diary, p. 148.