Thursday, March 28, 2013

"I Hear You Now" by Jon & Vangelis

Song#:  0299
Date:  08/16/1980
Debut:  85
Peak:  58
Weeks:  6
Genre:  Pop, Electronic

Pop Bits:  When US folks see the name Vangelis, the strains of "Chariots of Fire" start rumbling in their heads. For many here, it is really all he is known for. But long before that signature tune, Vangelis was an established solo artist and composer of scores with a focus on electronic music. At one point, he was considered for the keyboardist job in the band Yes but was not selected. However, he began to collaborate with Yes' lead singer Jon Anderson and the partnership yielded four popular albums. Vangelis wrote the music and Anderson provided the lyrics. Their first album, "Short Stories," caused a stir in the UK with the album hitting #4 and this single reaching #8. Their progressive, electronic, art-pop music didn't go over as well in the US, but they did get in the mid-chart range with this song.

ReduxReview:  I think folks will either like or loathe Jon & Vangelis. I happen to like them. Their songs have a certain theatrical 80s European sound that appeals to me. Not all of their songs work, but they are interesting nonetheless. This song is just pure early-80s electronica and even though it kind of sounds dated, especially with that farty "Popcorn"-like synth, there is still something pretty darn cool about it. It sounds like a less-funky Thomas Dolby.

ReduxRating:  7/10

Trivia:  In 1975, Vangelis released the solo album "Heaven and Hell." It featured the song "So Long Ago, So Clear" which was his first collaboration with Jon Anderson. Parts of the album also served as the theme music to the PBS series "Cosmos."


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