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  • jshambley

Eurythmics - 'Touch'

Updated: May 26, 2021

Album: Touch

Artist: Eurythmics

Release Date: November 14, 1983

Genre: New Wave Pop

Length: 0:45:30

Label: RCA Records

Producer: David Stewart

Rolling Stone Top 500 (2012): #492

Rolling Stone Top 500 (2020): N/A

One of the coolest voices in music history...

Following the launch of MTV in 1981, cities where MTV was available saw a massive increase in music sales for bands with videos on MTV. Most of these bands were British as the licensing was a lot easier for British bands than American groups. This led to an almost second-coming of the British Invasion of the 1960's. One group that was one of the most influential MTV success babies was none other than the Eurythmics, and more specifically, lead singer Annie Lennox. After releasing their smash hit "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)", the Eurythmics capitalized on their popularity with Touch. Reaching #7 on the US Billboard 200 and achieving platinum certification in both the United Kingdom and United States, this album is one of the most influential albums of the 80's.

Adopting the decade defining 80's sound, Touch is a synth-pop powerhouse full of punchy drum beats, meaty slapstick bass, and the beautiful gospel sound of Lennox's voice. A great example of this is the song "Who's That Girl". The harmonies Lennox added behind her lead vocals gives the feeling that an entire choir is preaching to the masses. The combination of acoustic and synthetic instruments throughout the album keeps each sound fresh and exciting and makes it hard to get bored. Naturally, the last few songs on the album start to lose their appeal though, especially when you get to "Paint a Rumour". The song has some great sounds but quickly gets repetitive around three minutes in, which isn't great for a seven and a half minute song. The last song being the worst track on the album is respectable when the beginning of the album is full of great hits like "Here Comes the Rain Again". Opening up an album with such an iconic 80's riff, followed by Lennox's gorgeous voice, combined with a driving beat, has the ability to overshadow its underlying dark, depressing lyrics of getting out of a depressive funk. The lyrics Lennox sings throughout the album aren't the most complex, but the way they are written and arranged together adds what would've been a massive hole in a great instrumental arrangement.

If you google a picture of Annie Lennox, she looks absolutely nothing like how you would imagine someone that can belt the way she does would look. That only adds to the flair of Touch. Her presence on the album makes me believe the Eurythmics would have been an awesome live concert to see in the 80's during their prime. You can just tell by the way the instruments sound, the beat that constantly advances the song and the way Lennox belts would combine into magic. I don't have many critiques of this album as it gives a look at early 80's synth-pop and provides building blocks for late 80's and future electronic music. The way the Eurythmics utilize the synth sound to the fullest shows up so much in modern music today, it would be hard to say electronic music would sound the way it does now without their influence.

Favorite Songs: "Aqua", "Here Comes the Rain Again", "Who's That Girl"

Least Favorite Song: "Paint a Rumour"

Production Quality:

  • Mix = 9/10

  • Innovation = 9/10

Songwriting Quality:

  • Arrangement = 9/10

  • Lyricism = 8/10

Instrumentation Quality:

  • Vocal Timbre = 10/10

  • Instrumental Timbre = 9/10

  • Group Chemistry = 10/10

Overall Likability:

  • My Personal Rating = 7.5/10

Overall Rating: 8.8/10

Any confusion on how the rating is weighted/calculated, please look at my "About" page.

Remember this is all my opinion! Let me know if you agree, disagree or have any comments!

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