Dire Straits, Communiqué (1979)
I used to be a massive Dire Straits fan. I was 14 and such things are allowed at that age. But now it’s not really an option to hold your head high as a Dire Straits fan. I still own all the albums but really, when it’s down to business only the first four albums will do. So I am a fan of the first half of their career. And from there, really, only the first two albums are (totally) necessary. One of my favourites has always been Communiqué – right from when I bought the tape, aged 14. My LP is a cheap, second-hander, it plays fine. And I think it’s the best full album-length set of songs from the band – rivalled only by the debut – I talked about that here (was nice to hear from a few fans). But Communiqué seems smarter/better – and has that great opening tune. I’ve kept interested in some of the Knopflersaurus’ music and don’t quite see why there was a backlash. His soundtracks and some of his solo albums are decent but the real joy – for me- is in the early Straits work. It must be the cartoon music-vids and headbands that put people off. Seems a bit silly. The best of the band’s music sits on its own, completely happily unaware/uninterested in punk and post-punk; a sort of pub-rock made good. But that’s not quite right as the best of it is far more sophisticated than (just) that. Maybe I’m on my own here – and if so that’s cool. While I’m on my own I’ll listen to Communiqué again. Thinking back, as I always do, to how happy I was in my early obsession with this band.
Sample Track: Lady Writer