Back in 1993, The Cocteau Twins released the LP Four-Calendar Cafe.  It was a work which horrified many long-term fans given it was a lot lighter and poppier in places than just about anything previously. I can recall some fans being annoyed by the fact that in some of the songs you could make out some of the lyrics being sung by Liz Fraser….although let’s be honest it was hardly the stuff of Kylie or Bananarama.

The lead-off single is one of my favorites :-

mp3 : Cocteau Twins – Bluebeard

The 4AD book from a couple of years ago featured an extensive contribution from Robin Guthrie but not his erstwhile partner of old. It’s now very clear that this was a Liz lyric…aimed squarely at him as he battled the demons of drug and alcohol dependency; the extent of his problems were such that his behaviour drove his partner to undertake psychotherapy in an effort to resolve the underlying issues. A few years later, the band, as well as Liz and Robin’s relationship, dissolved in a very messy way.

In reaching #33, Bluebeard was one of their biggest successes as far as singles. Here’s what was also available on the CD:-

mp3 : Cocteau Twins – Three Swept
mp3 : Cocteau Twins – Ice-Pulse
mp3 : Cocteau Twins – Bluebeard (acoustic version)



  1. When FCC first came out, I was rather put out that I could understand quite a lot of what Liz was singing, but when you look further into the lyrics, you understand where she was at the time. The ‘b-sides’ to the Evangeline single are even more about her relationships with Robin and their baby – Mud and Dark is the Greek myth of Echo and Narcissus – maybe her as Echo??? – and Summer-Blink, questioning herself – “I belong when I contribute” “I think, yes, I’m doing a fine job.”

  2. I’ve always stayed enough of an arms length from full on fanboy status with Cocteau Twins, that when their sound evolved from one direction to another and then again to another, I wasn’t so deeply involved in that sound that it jarred me. That’s a long winded way of saying I enjoyed this period of CT.

  3. A friend of mine once said, ” you know that feeling when you look at some of your mates, and they are not your mates any more.” I don’t really relate to that but I can relate to looking at your favourite band, and they are not your favourite band an more.

    Incidentally Liz sang real words on the whole of Head Over Heels and the whole period before and just after. IMHO that is their best album by a country mile.

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