Alison Moyet

Alf

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Alison Moyet's solo debut moves away from the all-electronic backing of her two-album partnership with Vince Clarke in Yaz, but ironically, those two albums sound much less dated in retrospect than Alf itself. Hooking up with Bananarama's producers, Tony Swain and Steve Jolley, Moyet delivers an enormous, walloping mid-'80s pop sound that constantly threatens to overwhelm both the songs, which are a mixed bag, and occasionally even the formidably voiced singer herself. Several tracks make it through the production mill unscathed, notably the singles "All Cried Out" and "Love Resurrection," but the album's pinnacle is the remarkable "Invisible," a soulful shouter penned by Motown great Lamont Dozier that's among the great R&B pop singles of the '80s. Moyet tears into the song's emotional chorus with more ferocity than on the rest of the album, and the song is as melodically sturdy as any of Dozier's previous hits. Some of the other tracks would benefit from less-overbearing production, most notably the chilling "Where Hides Sleep," making Alf one of those albums that sounds better once the listener has mentally undressed the songs a bit.

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