Talking Heads

Stop Making Sense [Special Edition]

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Review

When the soundtrack for the classic Talking Heads movie Stop Making Sense was originally issued in 1984, it was only nine tracks in length, even though a total of 16 were performed on film. So when the film was re-released in theaters and on home video in 1999, a new version of the soundtrack was issued as well, including all 16 songs and sporting an even better remastered sound. Recorded over three nights at Hollywood's ~Pantages Theatre in December 1983 (during the tour in support of Speaking in Tongues), the usual four-piece lineup was supplemented by Parliament-Funkadelic keyboardist Bernie Worrell, percussionist Steve Scales, guitarist Alex Weir, and backup singers Lynn Mabry and Ednah Holt. Songs from all eras of the band are featured. The first four tracks are early selections ("Psycho Killer," "Heaven"), performed as bare renditions, plus full-band funky versions of such later hits as "Life During Wartime," "Burning Down the House," "Once in a Lifetime," and "Girlfriend Is Better." Also included are lesser-known album tracks ("Swamp," "This Must Be the Place," "Crosseyed and Painless"), plus a track from David Byrne's 1981 Catherine Wheel album ("What a Day That Was"), and "Genius of Love" by the Tom Tom Club (a side project of drummer Chris Frantz and bassist Tina Weymouth). One of the greatest live albums ever, the 1999 version of Stop Making Sense captures the Talking Heads at the height of their powers. A quintessential purchase. ~ Greg Prato, Rovi

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