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Monday, April 23, 2012
Portishead-Dummy (JHO Hall Of Fame)
August 22, 1994-Portishead releases their debut album "Dummy".It peaks at number 2 in the UK and 70 in the US.
The Fall of 1994-The single "Sour Times" gets a lot of attention on MTV and gets quite a bit of play on alternative rock stations. I personally like the song's "spy like soundtrack" and adore lead singer Beth Gibbon's sultry voice. The memorable video also put Gibbons and collaborator Geoff Barrow on the top of my "Watch for this artist" list for the following year.
1998-I see the video for "Only You", from the band's second album on late night TV. At the time it's mesmerizing. Being that it's their third single from the album, I'm a little behind. Later in the year I catch their whole performance with the New York Philharmonic orchestra. It's fantastic. But by 1999, Portishead fades away for me. Gibbons goes solo and the band doesn't release another album for ten years.
2001-I start seeing "Dummy" on a lot of end of the decade lists. Thanks to the internet, I access a lot more of these lists with ease...not just the ones you used to get from magazines. My intrigue raises again.
2003-Working on my back catalog, I finally pick up "Dummy" almost 9 years after its release. I listen to it a few times but it seems odd at first. I feel like I've taken a trip back to a dead genre of Trip-Hop. But I'm reminded of the alluring spy like samples Barrow uses on "Mysterons" and Gibbons' seductive voice on "It Could Be Sweet". I'm not fanatical, but I decide to file it in the listen to it sometimes category.
2010-"Wandering Star" becomes one of my favorite songs of the 90's. It just hit me during a run one day. It helped me finish a workout of a ten mile run that I desperately needed inspiration for. The breaks, Gibbons' ghostly voice, and that pulsating bass running through it...all those reasons helped me love the song even more. I consider it the caper of "Dummy". If you're not sold, listen to "Wandering Star" on a day you're feeling a bit down. You will regain confidence.
2012-"Dummy" enters the JHO Hall of Fame...end of story.