Favourite Albums #1 Crowded House - Together Alone

Favourite Albums #1 Crowded House - Together Alone

My Father, in particular, was a big follower of Split Enz, whose music had an enormous affect on me growing up, so I guess it was only a matter of due course that after the Enz disbanded he followed on with Crowded House, and in turn it continued my musical journey, although I was unaware of the connection between the two bands until I was older. At which time my love of both bands suddenly made more sense.

Together Alone is a spectacular, powerful, ethereal sounding album. Recorded in Kare Kare on New Zealand's west coast, north of Auckland, it captures the mood of what the west coast can be. Strangely I have always felt a strong connection with beaches on our west coast. There's something in watching storms roll in from across the Tasman, the mysterious qualities, the dark sand. There has always been a deep, powerful pull, edge-of-the-world, and hypnotic quality about it to me, and Together Alone somehow draws from all those things and makes sense of it. Perhaps that is some of the reason I love it so much. It's steeped in a seemingly timeless place.

The songs have an enduring quality to them. From the first track 'Kare Kare', which gently, and yet powerfully crashes in, to the urgency of 'In My Command' and 'Black and White Boy', the subtleties of 'Nails In My Feet' and 'Walking On The Spot'. 'Private Universe' in particular has a surreally beautiful, and trance-like effect on me. It's like disappearing to another world. The release and energy of hearing the brilliant, stick wielding, late Paul Hester tear through 'Skin Feeling' with the band in tow. "Distant Sun' which is as great a song as Neil Finn has ever conjured, and continues to do so. The album is a perfect balance between a songwriters pop sensibilities, and with a group wanting to push out of that very box and into new areas of space and sonic landscaping.

It is always hard picking favourite albums or songs, but this has been my favourite album almost since first listen. It's a masterpiece of music.



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