Introducing The Style Council
The Style Council
Media Condition: VG+
Sleeve Condition: VG
Genre: Pop, Soul, New Wave
Notes: German pressing. Very clean copy, record could be graded NM, save for a hairline scratch that does not affect playing quality. Green tape in top left corner of jacket.
If you like: a slicker variant of ‘80s British new wave, this early Style Council record is for you.
About: Guitarist/vocalist Paul Weller broke up the Jam, the most popular British band of the early ‘80s, at the height of their success in 1982 because he was dissatisfied with their musical direction. Weller wanted to incorporate more elements of soul, R&B, and jazz into his songwriting, which is something he felt his punk-oriented bandmates were incapable of performing. In order to pursue this musical direction, he teamed up in 1983 with keyboardist Mick Talbot, a former member of the mod revival band the Merton Parkas. Together, Weller and Talbot became the Style Council–other musicians were added according to what kind of music the duo were performing. With the Style Council, the underlying intellectual pretensions that ran throughout Weller’s music came to the forefront.
Although the music was rooted in American R&B, it was performed slickly–complete with layers of synthesizers and drum machines–and filtered through European styles and attitudes. Weller’s lyrics were typically earnest, yet his leftist political leanings became more pronounced. His scathing criticisms of racism, unemployment, Margaret Thatcher, and sexism sat uneasily beside his burgeoning obsession with high culture. As his pretensions increased, the number of hits the Style Council had decreased.*via Stephen Thomas
Why it’s worth your time: Putting this record on your turntable is like getting a new window air conditioner unit. Introducing The Style Council drips with an undeniable coolness–one relatively foreign to our day and age, one difficult to pinpoint, but one palpable nonetheless. With both Weller and Talbot fresh off their prior projects and hot on creating something completely new here, we get a rare etching of a zealous and unadulterated beginning.
A favorite track: Speak Like A Child