Classic British Indie Album
Darin Campbell | Toronto | 06/24/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When this first came out in 1988 it was one of my favourite records and I played it to death. Their sound was described as "Jesus and Mary Chain crossed with the Left Banke" meaning they had an accessible pop sound but also the feedback and distortion that marked the J $ M records. The big single was "Christine" but the album is loaded with great songs, including "Hope", "Road" and Sulphur". A high point of the 80's British indie scene and an overlooked gem."
Kind of Suprised I'm the First to Review this
Tony Ukena | CA, United States | 11/17/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
""I don't why I love you, your face is a hammer in my head; I remember every word you said, I just don't know why I love you..." is the lyric from track #6 on this amazing album.
There are about 6 high quality songs on this album. The music on this album is filled with depth and layers of musical and conceptual ideas. The lyrics are mad and that's what makes the songs so special.
For example, in the song, "The Beatles and the Stones", in the introduction, you hear faintly in the background the intro to "All You Need is Love" and then this is juxtaposed with the lyric: "Look at you, shouting out, loud as thunder out to sea, you want the bomb, and so do we, a bomb from the sky is the perfect crime, shoulder on shoulder in heat...." yet the music to these violent metaphors is pleasantly melancholic and nostalgic in nature.
There are many brilliant musical and lyrical ideas throughout this album. There's an incredible mania in the song "in a room" which lyrically appears to be the depiction of a man gone crazy in his drunken stupor of emotional infatuation. "and I can't slow down, and I can't slow down...."
If you're into deep, sarcastically dry, intelligent, insane, and mature lyrical content and do not mind the post punk new wave and alternative rock sound that's similar to Echo and the Bunnymen, you'll go pleasantly mad listening to these tracks over and over again.
What an album. What songs."
An Underappreciated Debut
SandmanVI | Glen Allen, VA United States | 07/01/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"House of Love on this excellent & out-of-print self-titled debut (seems like all of their better albums were self-titled - have fun searching Amazon for them) achieved something that only a handful of great bands, chiefly The Smiths, were able to accomplish. That being, they managaed to have a subtle, beautiful and intelligent sound that somehow retained a raw edge. Given their high-brow style of Brit Pop coupled with witty masterful lyrics, comparisons with The Smiths are inevitable. However there's a certain haunting element to this album that is uniquely HOL. Also the House added touches of Jesus & Mary Chain feedback at key times.
"Christine", an alt-pop classic, may be the album's apex. The track deliveres a lot despite its brevity traversing between a minimal, shimmering Gothic romance and feedback-laden swagger then ending with a lilting pop ditty during the fade-out. Beyond the obvious single, there are numerous other excellent tracks that will allow fans to debate their favorites. I've always personally adored the understated, delicate "Man To Child" which skillfully handles the complexity of familial relations and aging.
HOL's self-titled debut is simply a gorgeous work of late 80's Inide pop that should not be missed. Though for a more polished sound, you might try their 2nd album, also self-titled and also out-of-print; If you search E-Bay, the 2nd album is the one with "Shine On", "Beatles & Stones" and "I Don't Know Why I Love You"."