Café Bleu

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Café Bleu
The-Style-Council-Café-Bleu.jpg
Studio album by The Style Council
Released 16 March 1984
Recorded October 1983 to January 1984
Studio Solid Bond Studios, London; string overdubs at CBS Studios, London
Genre
Length 43.57
Label Polydor
Producer
The Style Council chronology
Introducing The Style Council
(1983)Introducing The Style Council1983
Café Bleu
(1984)
Our Favourite Shop
(1985)Our Favourite Shop1985
Singles from Café Bleu
  1. "My Ever Changing Moods"
    Released: 1984
  2. "You're the Best Thing"
    Released: 1984

Café Bleu is the official debut album released by the English band The Style Council. It was released on 16 March 1984,[1] on Polydor Records, produced by Paul Weller with Peter Wilson. It followed the compilation Introducing The Style Council, which was released only in the Netherlands, Canada and Japan. The album was mainly recorded at Solid Bond Studios (owned by Weller) except for the strings which were recorded at CBS.[2]

Café Bleu was renamed My Ever Changing Moods in the United States to capitalise on the success of that single. Café Bleu included a large number of extra musicians, known as Honorary Councillors, including Tracey Thorn and Ben Watt from Everything but the Girl. The album represented a huge shift away from Weller's previous group The Jam and towards incorporating his favoured elements of classic soul, jazz and rap.

It was included in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4.5/5 stars[3]
Q 4/5 stars[4]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide 2.5/5 stars[5]
Smash Hits 8½/10[6]
Spin 3.5/5 stars[7]

In a retrospective review, Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic felt that Café Bleu, while being indicative of "the group's fatal flaw – a tendency to be too eclectic and overambitious", was nonetheless "one of their better efforts", praising Weller's "solid soul-tinged pop songs, including 'My Ever Changing Moods,' 'Headstart for Happiness,' 'You're the Best Thing,' and 'Here's One That Got Away.'"[3]

In 2014, Treblezine included it in their list of "10 Essential Sophisti-pop Albums", saying that, while it does not feature synthesizers like the other albums on the list, "a mix of blue-eyed soul, jazz, and modern influences (for the time at least) made this record a sophisticated, progressive piece of pop."[8]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Paul Weller, except where noted.

Side one

  1. "Mick's Blessings" (Mick Talbot) – 1:15
  2. "The Whole Point of No Return" – 2:40
  3. "Me Ship Came In!" – 3:06
  4. "Blue Café" – 2:15
  5. "The Paris Match" – 4:25
  6. "My Ever Changing Moods" – 3:37
  7. "Dropping Bombs on the Whitehouse" (Weller, Talbot) – 3:15

Side two

  1. "A Gospel" – 4:44
  2. "Strength of Your Nature" – 4:20
  3. "You're the Best Thing" – 5:40
  4. "Here's One That Got Away" – 2:35
  5. "Headstart for Happiness" – 3:20
  6. "Council Meetin'" (Weller, Talbot) – 2:29

Additional track listing

Personnel[edit]

  • Paul Weller – vocals, guitar
  • Mick Talbot – keyboards, piano, Hammond organ
  • Steve White – drums, percussion
  • Billy Chapman – saxophone
  • Barbara Snow – trumpet on "A Gospel" and "Headstart For Happiness"
  • Randy Anderson – guitar
  • Tracey Thorn – vocals on "The Paris Match"
  • Chris Bostock – double bass on "The Paris Match", bass on "Here's One That Got Away"
  • Ben Watt – guitar on "The Paris Match"
  • Dizzy Hites – rap on "A Gospel"
  • Hillary Seabrook – saxophone on "A Gospel" and "Headstart For Happiness"
  • Dee C. Lee – vocals "Strength Of Your Nature" and "Headstart For Happiness"
  • Bobby Valentino – violin on "Here's One That Got Away"
  • Pete Wilson – drum programming on "A Gospel" and "Strength Of Your Nature"

References[edit]

  1. ^ NME. London, England: IPC Media: 3. 10 March 1984.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  2. ^ Home Studio Recording (UK Magazine) p30 (Vol 1 – Issue 9 – June 1984) – Interview with Peter Wilson (Producer: Café-Bleu)
  3. ^ a b Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "Café Bleu – The Style Council". AllMusic. Retrieved 23 July 2017. 
  4. ^ Quantick, David (September 2017). "Vogue Trader". Q (376): 118. 
  5. ^ Coleman, Mark (2004). "The Style Council". In Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian. The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (4th ed.). Simon & Schuster. p. 789. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8. 
  6. ^ Martin, Peter (15 March 1984). "The Style Council: Café Bleu (Polydor)". Smash Hits: 27. 
  7. ^ Duerden, Nick (July 2008). "Discography: Paul Weller". Spin. 24 (7): 88. Retrieved 2 November 2017. 
  8. ^ Terich, Jeff; Blyweiss, Adam; Bossenger, A. T.; Prickett, Sam (24 April 2014). "10 Essential Sophisti-pop albums". Treblezine. Retrieved 23 July 2017. 

External links[edit]