Kirsty MacColl

From Croydon to Cuba: The Videos

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Kirsty MacColl might not have made many videos -- and of those, she made even fewer that impacted upon any audience larger than that which was already hanging onto her every word. But still this digest of all 14 videos (plus the inevitable "Fairytale of New York," with the Pogues) stands as the soundtrack that the '80s and early '90s never had, and probably didn't deserve. A parade of gorgeous songs, heart-stopping visuals and that voice (was there any other so perfect?). From Croydon to Cuba. . .The Videos, the companion to the CD box of the same name, disappoints only in its total lack of ambition. A stranger to the video camera she may have been, but MacColl's TV appearances would have rounded up the story in stupendous fashion, instead of leaving us weaving and ducking through a smattering of highlights. We don't even get to relive "There's a Guy Works Down the Chip Shop"! What there is, of course, is more than worth the price of admission -- the ever-so-'80s story line videos for "Terry" (co-starring an uber-nerdish Ade Edmondson) and "He's on the Beach"; the gritty soap of "Can't Stop Killing You"; the innocence of "Days" (and the hilarious daze of "Innocence"), all the way up to the two videos shot for MacColl's final album Tropical Brainstorm. But bonus material is restricted to a fairly insubstantial photo gallery, and a 12-minute feature on the making of the Electric Landlady album, and you can't help thinking that the project (not to mention MacColl herself) deserved a lot more than this.