East Side Story – Squeeze

The MARK’S VINTAGE VINYL page features something from Mark’s collection of recordings from over the years. Most of it is on vinyl – hence the name – though there will be a few entries from his CDs (remember those?).

East Side Story, by Squeeze

  • Fourth studio album by British new wave rock band Squeeze, released in 1981.
  • I discovered Squeeze in college when I was loving all things new wave. The earlier Squeeze albums went from punk to new wave to pop/new wave. East Side Story took their pop/new wave to a whole different level, thanks in large part to one of the album’s producers, Elvis Costello. Songs on this album show flashes of R&B, soul, country and rockabilly, all wrapped around the band’s raucous new wave silliness.
  • If you’ve listened to rock radio stations over the years, you’d recognize the one song that was a minor hit – Tempted. Somehow the song reached #8 on the Mainstream Rock chart, and it got to #49 on the Hot 100. It still gets play on some classic rock stations, and is considered an 80s standard.
  • All songs on this album are mini-masterpieces. When this album came out, the songwriters for Squeeze, Chris Difford and Glenn Tilbrook, were getting comparisons to Lennon/McCartney. Seems outrageous now, but indeed they received that comparison by several music critics in the early 80s. Critics loved the album – Allmusic gave it 5 out of 5 stars (calling Squeeze “the best pop band of its time”), and even snooty Rolling Stone gave them 4 out of 5 stars, with Senior Editor David Fricke making a Lennon/McCartney comparison.
  • For more on Squeeze, check out my blog post from September 3, 2017.
  • My faves – In Quintessence, Woman’s World, and Messed AroundHere’s a rare video of the band performing Woman’s World. Hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

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