CD Tiger Bay (CD 7021679),
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Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 2759112
Saint Etienne: Sarah Cracknell (vocals); Bob Stanley, Pete Wiggs (keyboards); Ian Catt (keyboards, guitar, bass).
Additional personnel: Tim Burgess, Shara Nelson (vocals); Mick Bund, Ian Davies (guitar); Mike Patton (guitar, mandolin); Kate St. John (oboe); Merve Depeyer (keyboards, programming); Spencer Smith (drums); Daniel Abraham, Rick Smith (programming); Debsey, Siobhan Brookes (background vocals); Original Rockers.
Saint Etienne's third album, TIGER BAY, was the band's last release of new material prior to a nearly four-year layoff which saw singer Sarah Cracknell record a pure-pop solo album and keyboardists/arrangers/producers Bob Stanley and Pete Wiggs run a dance-oriented record label. TIGER BAY, which was released in 1994, is the one Saint Etienne album on which the North London trio's love for club rhythms and sound-for-sound's-sake takes precedence over the group's crafty pop songwriting skills. The single "Hug My Soul," which appears in two radically different versions, is a ticking, occasionally swirling melange of dancefloor beats and uncommonly breathy Cracknell vocals. She uses the same technique to excellent effect on the album's pulsing opener, "Urban Clearway." The soulful "Former Lover" and "Like a Motorway" are more melancholy tunes that work just as well as the more uptempo songs. TIGER BAY is an atmospheric, hypnotic gem.
Spin (7/94, p.72) - "...the group has learned to modulate its thematic shifts more subtly...Saint Etienne makes dance pop that's more welcoming than hypnotic or seductive..."
Alternative Press (8/94, p.90) - "...Etienne's disco-llision of `60s pop and `70s dance is now reaching such peaks of consistent perfection that it's impossible to believe they haven't long since...conquered the entire known universe..."
Option (11-12/94, p.141) - "...Though the band steals freely from vintage Depeche Mode and other early-'80s disco beats, TIGER BAY thoroughly captivates, and captures a broader meaning of the word `ambient.'"
Melody Maker (2/26/94, p.30) - "...somehow they've created a Virtual Pop Reality where deep house, medieval balladry, Moroderesque hi-NRG, snare-smacking Northern Soul, pneumatic Jamaican dub, and tearjerking torch songs coexist, and are of equal value. The Etienne aesthetic prevails...."
Mojo (Publisher) (p.114) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "Most of the songs were based on old traditionals, the ancient melodies relocated atop synths and sequencers."
Pitchfork (Website) - "TIGER BAY still makes for the subtlest, most cinematic, and pretty much indisputably last of Saint Etienne's astounding initial burst of albums."
Clash (magazine) - "[S]ome very sophisticated and very serious British pop music....It was subtle, unassuming, classy and it has stayed current because of those reasons."
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Universal UK 2759112
Source UK (UK)
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