Aussie reissue combines her landmark 1979 album, 'Broken English' with the 1994 compilation, 'Faithfull A Collection of Her Best Recordings', together in one package. Standard jewel case & digipak with original artwork c... more »ome housed together in a slipcase.« less
Aussie reissue combines her landmark 1979 album, 'Broken English' with the 1994 compilation, 'Faithfull A Collection of Her Best Recordings', together in one package. Standard jewel case & digipak with original artwork come housed together in a slipcase.
Platinum-certified return from a true rock & roll survivor!
29-year old wallflower | West Lafayette, IN | 09/23/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Even as she had hits in the '60s with "As Tears Go By" (written by her paramour Mick Jagger), Marianne Faithfull was primarily known as Jagger's girlfriend, and any sort of talent she may have possessed was not worth noting. But after she and Mick called it off, Faithfull began a slow recovery back into both her music and her life. Heroin addiction had sent Faithfull on a nightmarish journey that would be effectively captured on the Rolling Stones' classic "Sister Morphine". Marianne wouldn't get her chance to do good until 1979 with her highly-acclaimed comeback BROKEN ENGLISH. She had recorded a few albums before this, but they were tentative efforts before BROKEN ENGLISH effectively announced her return. Those who listened were in for a surprise, especially those who first heard her as the virginal voice of "As Tears Go By". Years of drug addiction had caused 33-year old Faithfull's voice to lower to a much more raspy, war-weary groan, but only that voice could have sung the material on BROKEN ENGLISH. "Guilt", Shel Silverstein's "The Ballad Of Lucy Jordan" and "Witches' Song" all find Marianne creating true-to-life personas that all hit home even more with her scarred, yet still resonant voice. I'm always on the verge of sadness every time I hear those songs. Others like the title track, "Brain Drain" and "What's The Hurry?" are somewhat lighter, but not too much. Maybe it's the state-of-the-art new-wave production that the album actually benefits from and not dates it all. If the bulk of BROKEN ENGLISH finds Faithfull as a vulnerable waif, the last two songs display her as a woman quite angry with her past. Her cover of John Lennon's "Working Class Hero" has her dismissing her early musical career and her decadence as much as Lennon used it to break away from the Beatles. If that wasn't enough, "Why D'Ya Do It?" has Marianne not just angry, but livid. Maybe it's about Mick Jagger more than anything else, and it seems she still has an axe to grind years after their separation. The first listen to it is a tremendous shocker, and it still is many listens later. BROKEN ENGLISH was widely hailed by critics and audiences alike on its release, going platinum without the aid of a huge hit single. Even better, it sounds like a debut album from a totally different artist, which in many ways it is. "As Tears Go By", be damned. This is Marianne Faithfull at her most naked and emotional."
Pieter | Johannesburg | 10/24/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Although the boundaries have shifted in the decades since this album's release, Broken English has lost none of its trenchant appeal. And despite Courtney Love and many angry grrrl groups using explicit lyrics, Why d'Ya Do It? still sounds fresh, perhaps because it originally was written as a poem by Heathcote Williams. Her version of Lennon's Working Class Hero sounds as sharp as ever, while the brooding title track is still relevant today. On the melodic side, Lucy Jordan has become quite a standard and could easily be considered a country weepie, while Witches Song remains eerie and anthemic. The sound is typical 80's rock with tight musicianship supporting this classic monument to decadence and despair. This is probably her best selling album of all time for all the wrong reasons! The other two works from the same period, A Child's Adventure and Dangerous Acquaintances, are equally excellent and will richly reward the listener. Nevertheless, Broken English stands tall as a masterpiece of broken taboos, subversive poetics and timeless songs."
All Life Is A Process Of Breaking Down
ladymadeleine | 11/17/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Broken English was the aural centrifuge by which Marianne Faithfull finally flung herself to bits, for all the world to see and hear. Some of the bits thereupon were rendered obsolete, some picked upon by the vultures that descended, some were retrieved and held cherished by those who valued her. For those of us who made the retrievals and joined Marianne's course in piecing Marianne back together -- as if emulating her beloved Mary W. Shelley of FRANKENSTEIN renown -- what a treasure we have found. True fans of Marianne Faithfull realize this and are bonded by the intimacy of the experience. MARIANNE FAITHFULL IS THE PERFORMER OF CHOICE FOR THOSE WHO DESIRE INTELLIGENCE, PASSION AND REALISM IN THEIR MUSIC. I cannot think of another performer today -- barring Dylan, perhaps -- who so consistently combines all three. This record is at its best when it's sloppy-good, just like Dylan when he's sloppy-good. The title track, `though politicized and Euro-hip, is arguably the least substantial statement on the album. Thus begin the dark ironies which pervade this album, all brought to light in Marianne's fractured voice. Simply sequence the deceptively innocuous-sounding "Witches' Song" ("Danger is great joy/Dark is bright as fire"), the self-affirming "Guilt", "The Ballad of Lucy Jordan" (the truncated ending like the warm wind in your hair), "What's The Hurry?" (staccato-sung drug haze like stepping on razors), and the mortally bruising "Why D'Ya Do It?" (the feminine facsimile of black rage and Marianne's "Sister Ray"), and witness an actual woman fending the world, finding beauty in the ugliness, and ugliness in the beauty too."
Anger and ennui....
L. Alper | Englewood CO | 07/05/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When Marianne Faithfull's "Broken English" hit these shores, it was a wonderful tonic for those of us weary of the pop banalities of the time (Journey, REO, Cheap Trick to name a few). Her raw, jagged voice is so evocative on this album that even tho it's short by today's standards, you'll feel like you've travelled a minefield.Some of the stand-outs include her rendition of John Lennon's "Working Class Hero" (Lennon reportedly thought her version made his sound wimpy) & the song of ultimate betrayed love "Why D'ya Do It?". "The Ballad of Lucy Jordan" takes us into the head of a suburban housewife who dreams of other lives & Faithfull's voice cracks wonderfully on the chorus, bringing incredible feeling into what could be a trite cliche. "Broken English" is a great Euro-dance tune. If you're looking for an album to brighten your day, "Broken English" is NOT for you! If you're looking for something to listen to at 1AM after a lovers quarrel, you can't go wrong here!"