For years i was always listening to the 1st song on an album,especially a Gary Numan one,to come up and make an impression.
Way back when i can still remember to this day the impact the 1st five notes of Telekon`s 1st track,`This Wreckage`,had on me,a build up to what is STILL one of my favourite tracks of all time.
And so as i put in the CD to the player and walked away,i never imagined such a different track would come through the speakers as Pray,haunting and decidedly dark,voices from hell,a call to arms as such and i dared to think,Sh*t,what next?.
And then came the spoken Numan lyrics on Deadliner`s verse,singing soflty in the chorus basically about being scared out of his wits,and some answering vocal shouts somewhat choral as a return,of something,or someone there somewhere,unseen but there,something we have all encountered,all that and only 2 songs in.
Then came the single previously released,`A Question of Faith`,hard rhythmn,s and a return to hard Guitar chords,you suddenly realize also so that it is JUST Numan in there,no other players as on other albums,just Numan,his keyboards and guitars,no sax,no female backing vocals everywhere,just Numan-`Dont Pray For My Soul` bangs out in the chorus,yup,religion is up on trial,and the strangely eerie but super true lyric at the end "When children kill children dont it make you wonder dont it make you question their faith",chilingly accurate and thought provoking.
Next up is Desire,a drum loop,or 2,kicks in and is instantly recognisable as the loop that was used for Films on a previous tour,but then the song builds up energy until the melody and Numan`s vocals kick in,slightly Easyern in melody,raging guitars and effects see Numan in a whirl of sounds,slightly hypnotic.
Scar genlty starts with a softer approach but then BANG,into the beat and again were away with some Vocals and drums,setting the tone of the song,a more melodic set out chorus,with some female backing vocals added in there.
Then the guitar orientated Love and Napalm tries to break out of the speakers,just the guitar line to bring the song in,but when the rest comes in a Numan wall of sound comes in,loud as you like,still dark in its lyrical content,a spoken word break down in the middle,straight from the heart and his memories,you can imagine it spoken with a sneer on his face,"All the pride and the shame,all the friends that came from nowhere and all crawled back again",words he must have wanted to say again and again,i hate to say it but Numan is Bitter on this album,he is still here,still fighting,and has used that to produce some fine songs in total.
Next up is the 1st ballad of the album,over the years,all the way from Telekon`s `Please Push No More` he has had the ability to write some fantastic ballads,capturing some beautifal words and feeling,this one specifically for Gemma,his now wife,"when my eyes 1st saw you,a vision,i knew that i loved you,and i do",odd isnt it,we find things so hard sometimes to say,and Numan does it wonderfully in 1 line,i dont mind admitting that i have played this to a partner,i apologosed to her as i couldnt find words better than that,i held her and we danced,it was truly a magic moment,his words are so emotional,i envy that.
Next we have a song that i have played other people,not the most fantastic song on the album,but so very effective in its chants,Magic,has a melody hook in the middle that had us ALL chanting along both with the abum and live,EHHHHHHHHHHH-OHHHHHHHHHHH EHHHHHHHHHH-OHHHHHHHHH,no not a telly tubbie but a bloomin good shout!
Bleed starts atmospherically and you wonder if its another Ballad,but up comes the backing track,and then the drums kick in,1st verse is just vocals and drums,then powerfully into the chorus,halfway into the song there is another melody sweeping itself into the song,as Numan gently sings along to it they compliment each other so well.
And so to the last song-possibly my favourite track on the album,slow,powerfully hard synths,soft vocals again-The Seed of A Lie,another ballad,more sad lyrics in this one complimented by some well played and thought out synths,"The wrong place,The wrong time,i dont know,The wrong face,yours or mine,i dont know",still sad and the final segment of the song in my eyes and ears is just beautifal,"The wrong word,when you cry,i will be,Like the seed of a lie,I will be,Like the jaw of disease,i will be,Like the last one who cared,i will be" augmented and complimented by a melody lifted from a song on a previous Numan album Outland called `Whisper`,a previous album,which works so well,then the last lyrics of the song,"Love is a mountain,but harder to climb,should be for ever but love is unkind,to me.........Dont let me down...............And you let me down"disappear in a bass synth drone and the CD stopped.
I was well and truly impressed,Numan had basically stripped himself to his roots,just him on his own,writing from his heart,sometimes in anger and this is how he brings the best out of himself,and i for one think this gave us great album,so many shades,different vocal styles,certainly more adventurous,and some well and trull crafted songs and anthenmis melodies.
On a quick end note this was a period of Numan producing some great stuff,He released a single,`Absolution`,a dark haunting love song with some great lyrics in it,"i would swim across oceans,just to be with you,I would climb a tall mountain,if you asked me to",more from the heart,on the CD single we got a taste of the Sacrifice Ext mixes that was to be released,showing how the songs were made and layered,an album i play more than the original to this day,nand also a remix done by Numan of his own song Magic,slighlty different and a but more raw but showing a bit of confidence in his own abilities not seen for a while.
He delivered for me,and was a turning point for him to where his music is today.