True Stories (Talking Heads album)

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True Stories
Talking Heads - True Stories.svg
Studio album by
ReleasedSeptember 15, 1986 (1986-09-15)
Recorded1986
Studio
Genre
Length40:33
LabelSire
ProducerTalking Heads
Talking Heads chronology
Little Creatures
(1985)
True Stories
(1986)
Naked
(1988)
Singles from True Stories
  1. "Wild Wild Life"
    Released: August 1986

True Stories is the seventh studio album by American rock band Talking Heads. It was released on September 15, 1986, by Sire Records, preceding lead singer David Byrne's related film True Stories.

The album includes only Talking Heads studio recordings of songs from the film; an original cast recording from the film was planned, but was not released at the time, although some actors' performances were featured on singles of songs drawn from the album. Later that year, Byrne released the album Sounds from True Stories containing incidental music from the soundtrack. In 2018, a complete film soundtrack album was finally released, combining cast performances from the film and tracks from the two previous albums; only those three performances by Talking Heads from the first True Stories album that are actually heard in the film were included.[1]

The single "Wild Wild Life" became the most prominent hit from the album, accompanied by its video airplay on MTV. The "Wild Wild Life" video won two MTV Video Music Awards in 1987: "Best Group Video" and "Best Video from a Film" (the video is in fact an extended sequence lifted directly from the film itself). A video for "Love for Sale" was created for use in the film (during a sequence when a woman, played by Swoosie Kurtz, watches the video on TV), and an extended version was later released as a video in its own right.

In 2006, the album was re-released and remastered by Warner Music Group on their Warner Bros./Sire Records/Rhino Records labels in DualDisc format, with three bonus tracks on the CD side (an extended mix of "Wild Wild Life", "Papa Legba" with vocal by Pops Staples, and "Radio Head" with vocals by Tito Larriva). 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 the videos of "Wild Wild Life" and "Love for Sale". 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.

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic[2]
Chicago Tribune[3]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music[4]
The Philadelphia Inquirer[5]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide[6]
Spin Alternative Record Guide6/10[7]
The Village VoiceB[8]

From contemporary reviews, Ken Tucker of The Philadelphia Inquirer gave the album a three out of four stars rating, stating the album was "gently melodic pop, with little of the polyrhythmic aggressiveness that has characterized recent Talking Heads albums."[5] Tucker found that "some of the songs verge on triteness or banality" but "Love for Sale" and "People Like Us" were "beautiful rock music."[5]

Track listing[edit]

All songs written and composed by David Byrne.

  1. "Love for Sale" – 4:30
  2. "Puzzlin' Evidence" – 5:23
  3. "Hey Now" – 3:42
  4. "Papa Legba" – 5:54
  5. "Wild Wild Life" – 3:39
  6. "Radio Head" – 3:14
  7. "Dream Operator" – 4:39
  8. "People Like Us" – 4:26
  9. "City of Dreams" – 5:06
  10. "Wild Wild Life" (Extended mix) (CD bonus track) – 5:30
  11. "Papa Legba" (Pops Staples vocal version) (Re-release bonus track) – 5:59
  12. "Radio Head" (Tito Larriva vocal version) (Re-release bonus track) – 3:50

Tracks 11 and 12 appear on the 2006 CD issue only. Of the 9 tracks on the original LP release, "Love for Sale", "Wild Wild Life" and "City of Dreams" are the only recordings that actually appear in the film. On screen, the other songs are performed by the film actors; two of those are included among the bonus tracks of the 2006 reissue. The performance of "Papa Legba" by Pops Staples that was included in 2006 reissue runs a full minute longer than the track included in the "complete soundtrack" version of 2018.

The band Radiohead named themselves after track six, "Radio Head".[9]

Personnel[edit]

Talking Heads[edit]

Additional musicians[edit]

  • Bert Cross Choir – vocals on "Puzzlin' Evidence"
  • Tommy Camfield – fiddle on "People Like Us"
  • Paulinho da Costapercussion on "Papa Legba", "Radio Head", and "People Like Us"
  • Steve Jordanaccordion on "Radio Head"
  • St. Thomas Aquinas Elementary School Choir – vocals on "Hey Now"
  • Tommy Morrell – pedal steel guitar on "People Like Us" and "City of Dreams"

Production[edit]

  • Charles Brocco – mixing assistance
  • Paul Christiensen – overdubbing engineering on "Puzzlin' Evidence"
  • Nick del Ray – engineering assistance
  • Mick Guzauski – mixing on "Wild Wild Life"
  • Lee Herschburg – mixing on "People Like Us"
  • Robin Laine – mixing assistance
  • Michael McClain – overdubbing engineering on "Hey Now", "Radio Head", "People Like Us", and "City of Dreams"
  • Tom Nist – mixing assistance
  • Jack Skinner – mastering
  • Eric Thorngren – engineering, mixing, overdubbing
  • Melanie West – engineering assistance

Charts[edit]

Certifications[edit]

Certifications for True Stories
Region Certification Certified units/sales
New Zealand (RMNZ)[29] Platinum 15,000^
United Kingdom (BPI)[30] Gold 100,000^
United States (RIAA)[31] Gold 500,000^

^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.

References[edit]

  1. ^ ""True Stories, A Film by David Byrne: The Complete Soundtrack" Out Now on Todomundo". Nonesuch Records. November 23, 2018. Retrieved November 24, 2018.
  2. ^ Hastings, Michael. "True Stories – Talking Heads". AllMusic. Retrieved February 4, 2016.
  3. ^ Kot, Greg (May 6, 1990). "Talking Heads On The Record". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved November 8, 2015.
  4. ^ Larkin, Colin (2011). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (5th concise ed.). Omnibus Press. ISBN 978-0-85712-595-8.
  5. ^ a b c Tucker, Ken (September 26, 1986). "Albums". The Philadelphia Inquirer. p. J28. Retrieved May 25, 2020 – via Newspapers.com.
  6. ^ Sheffield, Rob (2004). "Talking Heads". In Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian (eds.). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (4th ed.). Simon & Schuster. pp. 802–03. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
  7. ^ Weisbard, Eric; Marks, Craig, eds. (1995). "Talking Heads". Spin Alternative Record Guide. Vintage Books. p. 394. ISBN 0-679-75574-8.
  8. ^ Christgau, Robert (December 30, 1986). "Christgau's Consumer Guide". The Village Voice. Retrieved February 4, 2016.
  9. ^ Staff, Wired. "David Byrne and Thom Yorke on the Real Value of Music".
  10. ^ Kent 1993, p. 304
  11. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Talking Heads – True Stories" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  12. ^ "Top RPM Albums: Issue 0861". RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  13. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Talking Heads – True Stories" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  14. ^ "European Hot 100 Albums" (PDF). Music & Media. Vol. 3, no. 42. October 25, 1986. p. 20. OCLC 29800226 – via World Radio History.
  15. ^ Pennanen, Timo (2006). Sisältää hitin – levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla vuodesta 1972 (in Finnish) (1st ed.). Helsinki: Kustannusosakeyhtiö Otava. ISBN 978-951-1-21053-5.
  16. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Talking Heads – True Stories" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  17. ^ "Ísland (LP-plötur)". DV (in Icelandic). October 31, 1986. p. 43. ISSN 1021-8254 – via Timarit.is.
  18. ^ "Classifiche". Musica e dischi (in Italian). Retrieved May 29, 2022. Select "Album" in the "Tipo" field, type "Talking Heads" in the "Artista" field and press "cerca".
  19. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Talking Heads – True Stories". Hung Medien. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  20. ^ "Charts.nz – Talking Heads – True Stories". Hung Medien. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  21. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Talking Heads – True Stories". Hung Medien. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  22. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Talking Heads – True Stories". Hung Medien. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  23. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  24. ^ "Talking Heads Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  25. ^ Kent 1993, p. 438
  26. ^ "Top 100 Albums of '86". RPM. Vol. 45, no. 14. December 27, 1986. p. 9. ISSN 0033-7064 – via Library and Archives Canada.
  27. ^ "Hot 100 of the Year 1986 – European Hot 100 Albums" (PDF). Music & Media. Vol. 3, no. 51/52. December 27, 1986. p. 35. OCLC 29800226 – via World Radio History.
  28. ^ "Top Selling Albums of 1986". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  29. ^ "New Zealand album certifications – Talking Heads – True Stories". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved June 10, 2019.
  30. ^ "British album certifications – Talking Heads – True Stories". British Phonographic Industry. November 6, 1986. Retrieved January 28, 2022.
  31. ^ "American album certifications – Talking Heads – True Stories". Recording Industry Association of America. November 18, 1986.

Bibliography[edit]