Yaz / Yazoo

Only You

Composed by Vince Clarke

Song Review by

By some distance Yaz's most commercially successful song (it even belatedly became a minor hit in the US, where the original 1982 single had been a chart stiff, when it was revived in a TV ad in the mid-'90s), "Only You" is one of the most charmingly emotional ballads in the entire synth-pop genre. As a whole, the first wave of British synth-pop bands of the late '70s and early '80s (including Vince Clarke's earlier work with Depeche Mode) tended to deserve their critical rep as being cold and bloodless, simply because the synthesizers readily available at the time were still fairly primitive machines played with a punk-influenced DIY spirit that didn't lend itself to getting much past page two of the operators manual. Although "Only You" is played on the same generation of synths, Clarke's melody has a sweetly yearning quality, elegantly arranged by Clarke and producer E.C. Radcliffe in a fashion that links several different monophonic synths together to give the tune more depth and melodic substance. Most important, however, is Alison Moyet's perfectly understated vocal performance, soulful yet dignified in the manner of '70s soul star Ann Peebles, of Clarke's gentle and romantic lyrics. The song is so pretty, in fact, that both easy listening piano avatar Richard Clayderman and ex-folkie Judy Collins (in her adult contemporary phase) both recorded covers.

Appears On

Year Artist/Album Label Time AllMusic Rating
Upstairs at Eric's 1982 Mute 3:15
Only You 1982 Mute
No Image 1990
Various Artists
Rediscover 3:10
Club for Heroes 1992
Various Artists
3:10
Pop & Wave, Vol. 4 1993
Various Artists
3:10
That Loving Feeling, Vol. 4 1993
Various Artists
Dino Entertainment 3:07
Just Can't Get Enough: New Wave Hits of the 80's, Vol. 12 1995
Various Artists
Rhino 3:19
Flashback Cafe, Vol. 2 1995
Various Artists
Oglio Records 3:10
This Is the 80's [Alex] 1996
Various Artists
WEA International 3:10
18 New Wave Classics, Vol. 1 1997
Various Artists
JCI Associated Labels 3:14
Blast from the Past [Warner] 1998
Various Artists
Warner / ESP
Music for Heroes 1998
Various Artists
Bebutante 3:13
Retro Night Romance 1998
Various Artists
WEA 3:12
Now: 1982 [2 CD] 1999
Various Artists
Virgin / EMI 3:08
The Best 80's Album In the World Ever 1999
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution
Only Yazoo: The Best Of 1999 Mute 3:12
Number One 80's 2000
Various Artists
PolyGram 3:02
Electric: The Very Best Early Electronic, New Wave & Synth 2002
Various Artists
Telstar TV Records 3:11
Original Electro Album, Vol. 2 2004
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 3:06
Capital Gold 80's Legend 2004
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 3:09
A Home at the End of the World 2004
Original Soundtrack
Milan / WEA / Warner 3:13
Napoleon Dynamite [Soundtrack] 2004
Original Soundtrack
Lakeshore Records 3:10
School Reunion: The Smooches 2005
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 3:09
My Generation: The Soundtrack of Our Lives - The Eighties, Vol. 1 2005
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution
School Reunion: The Party 2005
Various Artists
Virgin 3:11
Complete Eighties 2006
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution
From the Heart: Classics 2007
Various Artists
Warner Music 3:10
101 80's Hits [EMI] 2007
Various Artists
Virgin / EMI 3:09
Essential 80s [EMI Gold] 2007
Various Artists
EMI 3:07
Mute Audio Documents 2007
Various Artists
Mute 3:13
Now That's What I Call the 80s [3 CD] 2007
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 3:09
Kiss FM: La Mejor Música [2 CD/DVD] 2007
Various Artists
Universal Distribution 3:09
The Original Electro-Pop Box Set 2007
Various Artists
EMI 3:08
In Your Room 2008 Mute 3:15
Revolutions in Sound: Warner Bros. Records - The First 50 Years 2008
Various Artists
Warner Bros. 3:10
True Love Songs [EMI] 2009
Various Artists
Virgin 0:00
Ashes to Ashes, Series 3 2010
Original Soundtrack
Sony CMG / Sony Music Entertainment 3:08
Anthems: Electronic '80s, Vol. 2 2010
Various Artists
Ministry of Sound 3:10
To the Best Mum in the World...Ever! 2010
Various Artists
EMI 0:00
Awesome '80s 2011
Various Artists
Mood Media Entertainment 3:10
The Collection 2012 Music Club Deluxe 3:12
Greatest Ever! Electric Eighties 2013
Various Artists
Greatest Ever 3:10
The Greatest Ever! Love Songs 2014
Various Artists
Greatest Ever 3:10
The 80s, Pt. 2 2014
Various Artists
Sony Music 3:21
Synth Pop 2015
Various Artists
Sony Music 3:11
No Image
Various Artists
Mixed Repertoire
BRIT Awards Decades: '80s
Various Artists
Rhino 3:12
No Image
Various Artists
Virgin
No Image
Various Artists
EMI / Mixed Repertoire 3:11
It Must Be Love
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution 3:06
Late Night Moods V.2
Various Artists
EMI Music Distribution
Love: A Collection of Everlasting Love Songs
Various Artists
PolyGram 2:53
Original Hits: 80s Pop
Various Artists
EMI 3:05
Retrolicious
Various Artists
Warner Music
Smash Hits '80s Annual
Various Artists
Rhino 3:12