The Riddle (album)

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The Riddle
Nik-Kershaw-The-Riddle.jpg
Studio album by Nik Kershaw
Released 19 November 1984 (1984-11-19)
Recorded 1984
Genre
Length 42:32
Label MCA
Producer Peter Collins
Nik Kershaw chronology
Human Racing
(1984)
The Riddle
(1984)
Radio Musicola
(1986)
Singles from The Riddle
  1. "The Riddle"
    Released: November 1984
  2. "Wide Boy"
    Released: March 1985
  3. "Don Quixote"
    Released: August 1985
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4.5/5 stars[1]
Džuboks (Favorable)[3]
Rolling Stone 2/5 stars[2]
Smash Hits 6.5/10 stars[4]

The Riddle is the second studio album by the English singer-songwriter Nik Kershaw. It was originally released in November 1984, on the label MCA.

On release, the album was received favourably by the majority of music critics. It went on to peak at #8 on the UK Albums Chart and reached #39 on the Australian ARIA Charts. The album launched three charting singles in the UK. "The Riddle" peaked at #3 on the UK Singles Chart; "Wide Boy" at #9; "Don Quixote" at #10. The album was certified platinum by the BPI.

The album was re-released on 9 August 2013 on Universal's new Re-presents imprint featuring rare bonus content. The reissue is a 2-CD set with the original album digitally remastered from the original 1/2" mix tapes; the bonus content consists of associated B-sides, 12" mixes, and live versions of the songs featured on the album.

Cover artwork[edit]

The album's cover photograph was shot on Chesil Beach in Dorset. On the back sleeve of the album, the Isle of Portland is seen in the background.[5] Additionally, the single release of the title song "The Riddle" used the same image of Kershaw on the beach, whilst the back sleeve featured a photograph of Kershaw reading a map, standing at Portland Bill. The Trinity House Obelisk is highlighted in the photograph.[6]

Critical reception[edit]

Smash Hits gave the album a mostly positive review calling it "a commendable offering from the thinking man's Limahl".[4] Reviewing retrospectively for AllMusic, critic Scott Bultman wrote of the album "Kershaw's second album finally garnered some deserved attention. The rest is his unique style of well-crafted synth-pop."[1]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Nik Kershaw.

Side one
No. Title Length
1. "Don Quixote" 4:55
2. "Know How" 4:52
3. "You Might" 3:17
4. "Wild Horses" 3:59
5. "Easy" 4:13
Side two
No. Title Length
6. "The Riddle" 3:52
7. "City of Angels" 3:56
8. "Roses" 3:58
9. "Wide Boy" 3:28
10. "Save the Whale" 6:02
Total length: 42:32

Personnel[edit]

Credits are adapted from the album's liner notes.[10]

Production team
Live personnel (2013 re-release)
  • Nik Kershaw – vocals; guitar; keyboards
  • Keith Airey – guitar; keyboards; backing vocals
  • Tim Moore – keyboards; backing vocals
  • Mark Price – drums
  • Dennis Smith – bass guitar
  • Gary Wallis – percussion

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1984) Peak
position
Australia (Kent Music Report)[11] 39
Canadian Albums Chart[12] 45
German Albums Chart[13] 12
New Zealand Albums Chart[14] 8
Norwegian Albums Chart[15] 5
Swedish Albums Chart[16] 11
Swiss Albums Chart[17] 23
UK Albums Chart[18] 8
US Billboard 200[19] 113

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Bultman, Scott. "Nik Kershaw – The Riddle". AllMusic. Retrieved 29 November 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c Henke, James (5 May 1985). "Lone Justice Proves They Are More Than Hype". The Tuscaloosa News. Retrieved 2 January 2016. 
  3. ^ "Nik Kershaw – The Riddle". Džuboks (in Serbian) (194 (second series)): 14. 
  4. ^ a b Sheaff, Claire (22 November 1984). "Album Reviews". Smash Hits. 6 (24): 25. 
  5. ^ "Images for Nik Kershaw - The Riddle". Discogs.com. Retrieved 2013-06-03. 
  6. ^ "Nik Kershaw - The Riddle / Progress - MCA - UK - NIK 6". 45cat. 2012-03-17. Retrieved 2013-06-03. 
  7. ^ "Nik Kershaw To Release Expanded Reissue Of 'The Riddle'". thisisnotretro.com. 2013-07-05. Retrieved 2013-07-09. 
  8. ^ a b "Nik Kershaw: The Riddle - Deluxe Edition Track Listing". www.superdeluxeedition.com. 2013-06-20. Retrieved 2013-07-14. 
  9. ^ "Nik responds to The Riddle deluxe bonus track selection comments". www.nikkershaw.net. 2013-07-12. Retrieved 2013-07-14. 
  10. ^ The Riddle liner notes. MCA Records. 1984. 
  11. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 165. ISBN 0-646-11917-6. 
  12. ^ "Bienvenue au site Web Bibliothèque et Archives Canada / Welcome to the Library and Archives Canada website". Collectionscanada.gc.ca. 2012-03-30. Retrieved 2015-11-29. 
  13. ^ "Charts-Surfer". Charts-surfer.de. Retrieved 2012-01-07. 
  14. ^ Steffen Hung. "New Zealand charts portal". charts.org.nz. Retrieved 2012-01-07. 
  15. ^ Steffen Hung (2006-06-15). "Norwegian charts portal". norwegiancharts.com. Retrieved 2012-01-07. 
  16. ^ Steffen Hung. "Swedish Charts Portal". swedishcharts.com. Retrieved 2012-01-07. 
  17. ^ Steffen Hung. "Die Offizielle Schweizer Hitparade und Music Community". swisscharts.com. Retrieved 2012-01-07. 
  18. ^ "UK Singles & Albums Chart Archive". Chart Stats. Retrieved 2012-01-07. 
  19. ^ "Music News, Reviews, Articles, Information, News Online & Free Music". Billboard.com. Retrieved 2012-01-07. 

External links[edit]