Music Blogs - Blogged Blog Directory Add to Technorati Favorites

Thursday, May 01, 2008

The Police: Every Breath You Take: The Classics -- Part I

I know it may be a little unorthodox on Audio Overflow to review a "greatest hits" type of album, rather than an album from which these songs came. However, being orthodox is not something I put much stock into when choosing an album or writing a review. I review what I like, and I like this album. Every Breath You Take: The Classics is just that... classic. I seriously doubt two things: a) that you find a song on here that you don't like and b) that you find a favorite that's not on this album. The Police do an amazing job as a band, and with Sting being their principal songwriter, how could they go wrong? This is a great listen and takes a spot among my top 10 favorite albums of all time. It's been known to repeat in my car CD player for days upon days. I hope you'll discover the same.

To start things off, you have "Roxanne", a song which I've always assumed to be about a prostitute and until today, did not know that it was loosely based on one of Sting's favorite novels, "Cyrano de Bergerac". It begins with what sounds like a song trying desperately to find its pitch, and after a matter of seconds, draws you nigh with captivating vocals and brilliantly played instruments. One of the best things about this song is that it's 100% memorable. I don't know if I know anyone who doesn't know this song. From grandparents to grandchildren, this is a well known, sing-along-able song (I like to make up words). One of my all time favorite songs to sing and listen to. It's spectacular! "Can't Stand Losing You" is a different type of song with it's Caribbean beat during the verses and electric guitars during the chorus. It's a very odd song with crazy harmonies that are strangely appealing, not appalling. With Sting's high pitched voice, sung in this particular song, it's not inconceivable that this song wouldn't click right away with listeners. It didn't with me, but I've come to love it the more I listen to it.

"Message in a Bottle" is a track which I now associate with guitar hero... probably because I couldn't beat it without a lot of practice. At any rate, it's tremendously guitar driven, but it works to its benefit as we have not had a song like this on the album yet. The music is brilliantly written, the vocals are captivating and catchy, and the lyrics are masterfully written. My favorite part of the song is when you realize there's millions of other castaways! It's a very cool moment within the context of the song. I strongly adore this song! In "Walking on the Moon", the Caribbean beat has returned (remember, it's just the beat, not the music as a whole). While this song's lyrics are nothing incredibly thought provoking, they're great to listen to and harmonize with, something I do quite frequently in my attempt to better a classic. "Walking on the Moon" has the same repetitive feel to it throughout its course, with little variation, but it's a comfortable song. While I like it, there are so many better choices on this album, that it's hard to stop here.

Ah... one of my favorites. "Don't Stand So Close to Me" is about a relationship with a teacher and a young student; Whether literally, metaphorically, or imaginatively, we can only assume. Like Roxanne, this track is loosely based on another of Sting's favorite novels, "Lolita", a book about some old dude sexually obsessed with a very young minor. Creepy, I know, but while inspiration is drawn from the novel, this song does not feel entirely wrong, and the vision in my mind is a little less statutory. I enjoy the song for not only the story behind it, but also the musicality of it. It's easy to sing along to and incredibly memorable. "De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da" is the sixth song on this long album, and is probably my least favorite. While I like it enough for being a fun, upbeat song, I know there is yet better to come. However, this song has one of the most unforgettable riffs, similar in originality to Stevie Nicks' "Edge of Seventeen" riff. Me likee! I absolutely love "Every Little Thing She Does is Magic"! From a girl's perspective, it's really cute! It's not only a sweet, romantic song about a guy's pining for this girl, but also a story. This is again a song that I can visualize. I really feel like it's a good addition to a track, when you get imagery from the artist. The Police give you no exception here. It's a great story with fun and upbeat, completely singable music. The chorus, "Every little thing she does is magic. Every thing she do just turns me on. Even though my life before was tragic, now I know my love for her goes on" is so completely precious... Maybe that's why women love Sting. Who knows?

Being that Every Breath You Take: The Classics is an album that I absolutely love and it has 14 songs, I want to make sure that it received ample coverage. I would only hope to do this album a twinge of justice. Please check out the second half next week. It'll be worth it to see the other "interesting" things that occur on this album. Plus, you'll need to see the rating, right?


Anonymous said...


I'm never coming back

Cale said...

Me too. Never coming back....ever EVER again!!! F*** this site!

Anonymous said...

If you ever get a chance play the Roxanne drinking game. Simple Rules:
Girls-Drink everytime Sting says "Roxanne"
Guys-Drink everytime "put on the red light" is said.

You'd be surprised at how many times you take a sip. At least count the number of times each is said...baffling.

Cale said...

No Way! The choruses would kill me!