60 ALBUMS @ 60 : #30


Tindersticks – Tindersticks (1995)

I mentioned yesterday that it was relatively easy to home in on a particular Prefab Sprout album for this most personal of charts.   Today’s, on the other hand, was a real dilemma. So many options.

The debut album, also confusingly known as Tindersticks, that was released in 1993.

A live CD recorded at the  Bloomsbury Theatre in London in 1995.

Two later live CDs from 2001, available only to begin with on the merchandise stalls at shows – one recorded during a four-day residency in Brussels and the other from a single show in Lisbon – were also thought about long and hard, as too was the studio album Curtains from 1997.

What I can say is that the golden era for Tindersticks was in the 90s and early 00s before they imploded and half of the original members left.

But it’s the 1995 studio album, often referred to as Tindersticks (II) to distinguish from the debut, which is coming in at #30 to start off the second half of the rundown.

I know this was issued on vinyl, with a free 7″ single thrown in for good measure, but I’ve always regarded it as a CD release.   Sixteen tracks, on which you can hear cellos, trumpets, saxophones, French horns, trombones, violins, violas and cellos, in addition to the standard drums, bass, guitars and keyboards, spread out over 71 minutes, and almost always underpinned by the crooning of Stuart A. Staples.

mp3 : Tindersticks – Tiny Tears

I had to put the song in at this particular point of the today’s post or else I’d have spent a few hours listening to the album over and over, constantly changing my mind as to what my favourite part of it is.  Tiny Tears must sit very close to the top of any list of the most compellingly beautiful songs about troubled and failing relationships.

One contemporary reviewer described the album as an awesome triumph of mood and atmosphere, and given that I’m very partial to both of these, it can be no surprise to find it so high up on this rundown.

But there’s still another 29 to go. And this is where it begins to get really tough in terms of ranking them.


6 thoughts on “60 ALBUMS @ 60 : #30

  1. I agree. Settling on a favourite Tindersticks LP is a dilemma. I also agree that their best period was from their beginning to early 2000s – despite releasing some beautiful music thereafter.

    I was once pilloried for having so many Tindersticks LPs – most on CD. I just huffed at the attempt and played Tindersticks. I do have this LP on vinyl with that 7″ – just saying. I also have the Travelling Light VHS – I’m unsure if it’s ever been played.

    A favourite band. A favourite LP. A favourite track from that LP, in Tiny Tears.

    Today is a good day!

  2. Billie Ray Martin, of Electribe 101 fame, is currently working on 4 (!) different albums, and for one of the albums she has been recording with Tindersticks. Although she is maybe not the normal T(n)VV kind of music, at least I’m looking very much forward to hear the results of that.

  3. I don’t know Tindersticks, but I have a request. Could you please include the whole list in the final posting? I’ve forgotten most of the picks so far and my WordPress feed would take days of scrolling to see it all. I won’t make you link from each title to each post, though!

  4. Great choice, one of my favourite albums. Tindersticks got me back listening to indie after a few years in the breaks, bass and bleeps wilderness. Tiny Tears, No More Affairs, Travelling Light, She’s Gone, the perfect soundtrack for someone (me) getting my stuff together following the end of a relationship I’d been in since my teens. A tricky one to not go with “My Sister”, a song that I recall you featured a few years back in your “Some Songs are Great Short Stories” series.
    As a bizarre coincidence, I later found out that the string quartet providing the lush string arrangements were friends of my ex-partner, ex-students of Manchester Uni.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.