# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Gilbert O'Sullivan - The Essential Collection

  by Lisa Torem

published: 26 / 11 / 2016

Gilbert O'Sullivan - The Essential Collection
Label: BMG
Format: CD X2


Appealing new double CD collection from 1970's chart-topper Gilbert O’Sullivan features back-in-the day ballads, but also illustrates how his songwriting excelled thereafter

This attractively-packaged double disc project definitely captures the warmth and cleverness that Irish singer/songwriter Gilbert O’Suilivan possesses in spades. There is a lot to choose from here. There’s the sweet, symphonic strings that underlie Gilbert’s response to a distant lover in ‘No Way’, which starts the collection off with a fair bit of drama. He sits down at the keys for ‘Nothing Rhymed,’ where, again, he’s left in the cold. And then there is the song that brought tears and smiles to a generation. ‘Claire’ is the kind of ballad that will never go out of style. ‘What’s in a Kiss’ (guitar version) allows the songsmith to ponder, which is something he does quite well: “What’s in a dream? Is it all the things you’d like to have been?” he inquires in the second verse. He’s honest, hopeful and sublimely tender. ‘You Are You’ has a bit of a Cole Porter penchant. “You’re like a painting by Cezanne,” he beams. Chopin, the Queen and Andy Warhol also make a guest appearance. “Keep your hands to yourself/I’m strictly out of bounds,” he sings, on ‘Get Down,’in a complete about face. For this section, Gilbert gets more daring. ‘The Golden Rule’ could have been sung from a burlesque stage. And in ‘Out of the Question,’ he again battles with someone less than true. ‘Happiness is Me and You’ finds Gilbert in a bewildered state: “In a world so distorted…” He can’t quite grasp what is happening, and then he discovers, “Love may be something that will see us through.” But the album gets lighter when Gilbert relaxes and settles into the lyric. On ‘Why Oh Why Oh Why’ he grapples with another coy lass and the lyrics echo his disappointment, but not in a heavy handed manner. He co-wrote only one song on the album, and that was with the great Peggy Lee. ‘Can’t Think Straight’ has a very Broadway sound and is about a lover who screwed up severely. He has no hope of getting her back, and has only himself to blame. The next series of ballads are more diverse. ‘Doing what I know’ rambles, but in a curious way. ‘Thunder and Lightning’ has great energy and attitude and ‘You Got me Going’ really rocks hard. The remixed ‘Made in Love’ recalls Lou Reed at his most mellow moments. ‘Matrimony’ is a Caribbean festival and ‘A Friend of Mine’ also has a great upbeat underbelly. ‘Alone Again Naturally’ is definitely is a mood-changer at this point and it’s satisfying to realize how very well this classic holds up, too. ‘Ooh Baby’ and ‘So What’ lend themselves well to drawn out bass lines and cool dance steps. ‘Answers on a Postcard’ is a song which really brings out Gilbert’s range. He takes chances with the phrasing, as well, and it’s a welcome change on an album of this length. He becomes again the ultimate wordsmith in ‘All They Wanted to Say’ and lets off steam on ‘Stick in the Mud,’ where he proves he can rock with the best of them. Again with ‘The Very Mention of Your Name,’ Gilbert concentrates much on structure and form and we see that he could have been a major force as a theatrical producer or film score star. 'The Essential Collection' proves that Gilbert O’Sullivan is a seasoned songwriter and showman, but at times the sheer length is a distraction. Still, there are some heavenly, unforgettable moments; these are songs that stack up to the best of the best.

Track Listing:-
1 No Way
2 Nothing Rhymed
3 Clair
4 What's in a Kiss
5 I Guess I'll Always Love You
6 You Are You
7 Ooh-Wakka-Doo-Wakka-Day
8 Get Down
9 The Golden Rule
10 Out of the Question
11 No Matter How I Try
12 Happiness Is Me and You
13 Why Oh Why Oh Why
14 Houdini Said
15 Can't Think Straight
16 Lost a Friend
17 Dear Dream
18 Doing What I Know
19 Thunder and Lightning
20 You Got Me Going
21 Made in Love
22 Matrimony
23 Alone Again
24 We Will
25 The Niceness of It All
26 Ooh Baby
27 So What
28 Answers On a Postcard
29 Young at Heart
30 I Wish I Could Cry
31 Miss My Love Today
32 All They Wanted to Say
33 Can't Get Enough of You
34 Where Would We Be
35 Stick in the Mud
36 I Don't Love You, But I Think I Like You
37 Missing You Already
38 Because of You
39 At the Very Mention of Your Name
40 Bear With Me
41 A Friend of Mine
42 Mr Moody's Garden
43 End-vironmental Piece

Band Links:-

Label Links:-

Post A Comment

your name
ie London, UK
Check box to submit

Pennyblackmusic Regular Contributors