hello folks! our weekly review this week is the Talking Heads debut record, Talking Heads 77 –

Talking Heads 77 has Psycho Killer on it, which is an insanely strong thing to have on your debut album. i dont think thats the most notable thing about this album, but i do want to mention that – it would be a miracle for most bands to have a track as off kilter and catchy as Psycho Killer on their first outing. incredible.

but i do think thats an interesting element of the record – the cumulative mood. as with a lot of these historical record, all of my listening experiences have been post-release, and i wont ever have a clear picture of the music landscape this was dropped into, so i can only read about how unique the sound was after the fact. i dont know why im acting surprised about it – this isnt even my first outing with a Talking Heads project! but i can still hear a kind of unease that permeates every track here – it opens with Uh-Oh, Loves Comes to Town, a song about the ways in which love is an impediment, the ways in which you’ll set aside your dutirs for love. The Book I Read, another love song, is anything but straightforward and while i find it fairly romantic the instrumental components of the song make a case against that reading, haha. the ending too has a wild energy to it too- Pulled Up builds and builds and builds, frantic shouts and sharp stabs of sound that rise and rise, only to coast off before building again. a big part of that is and will be David Byrne’s vocal performance – he’s got a kind of strained, passionate but uneasy quality to his vocals thats just so damn compelling. but i think parts of that can be picked up lyrically off the whole record, off tracks like No Compassion and Don’t Worry About the Government, and i def dont think the instrumentals here can be discounted.

speaking of instrumental bits, love the weird percussion, almost marimba like but more hollow, in Uh, Oh, Love Comes To Town. big big fan of New Feeling – the guitar is doing some great stuff, especially in the mix, playing off itself in fun ways, leading up to the outros of the choruses. Who Is It feels like it was a ton of fun to play – big fan of the guitar here as well, with some excellent percussion in the back.

i do appreciate the mellower tracks quite a bit, even if they arent my faves here – Talking Heads have a really strong track record of quieter tracks still carrying that kind od anxiety. Tentative Decisions isnt a quiet song, but its definitely far from bombastic in the way other tracks here are, and Happy Day is a lot closer to what i mean.

on the whole, really fun listen. big fan.

faves – New Feeling, No Compassion, The Book I Read, Psycho Killer
dislikes –

Talking Heads 77 – 8/10

for the next Weekly Album Review, i’ll be taking a look at Nightflight to Venus, from Boney M.! i’ll be back on Friday, June 7th, with that review and to pick another weekly record, and in the meantime, let me know what album you’d like me to review! (i pool all suggestions in one place, and draw a person, then one pick from that person, so feel free to drop as many as you’d like! if you leave an email or username i’ll contact you when i’ve gotten through all your suggestions.