Smile [Bonus Tracks]

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Steve "Spaz" Schnee
When Hazel O'Connor first shot to fame in 1980 due to her starring role in the new wave movie Breaking Glass, it wasn't quite certain whether she was an actress who made music never a good thing to music purists or a musician who could act never a good thing to movie aficionados. When she continued making music with albums like Sons & Lovers 1980 and Cover Plus 1981, those in the music world actually started paying attention. She was briefly saddled with the "female Bowie" tag even using Scary Monsters cover artist Edward Bell for her album Sons & Lovers, but by the time Cover Plus moved only a modest amount of units, it seemed to be all over for the ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Steve "Spaz" Schnee
When Hazel O'Connor first shot to fame in 1980 due to her starring role in the new wave movie Breaking Glass, it wasn't quite certain whether she was an actress who made music never a good thing to music purists or a musician who could act never a good thing to movie aficionados. When she continued making music with albums like Sons & Lovers 1980 and Cover Plus 1981, those in the music world actually started paying attention. She was briefly saddled with the "female Bowie" tag even using Scary Monsters cover artist Edward Bell for her album Sons & Lovers, but by the time Cover Plus moved only a modest amount of units, it seemed to be all over for the talented singer/songwriter. After three years of inactivity, O'Connor re-emerged with a new look and new musical direction. Gone were the Bowie-isms that plagued her earlier albums which haven't dated all that well, actually, replaced with a soulful keyboard-laden sound. Working with her brother Neil formerly of punk band the Flys and producer Martin Rushent, O'Connor created an album that was not that different from the first two solo albums that Rushent had produced for Pete Shelley. The focus of Smile is on the songs, which are well-written slices of synth-laden pop that show a maturity in Hazel's songwriting skills. "Just Good Friends" and "Tell Me a Story" are probably the closest the album gets to her older material, melodically, although the simple arrangements allow the songs to breathe a bit easier. The haunting ballad "Cuts Too Deep" is stunning and should have been a massive hit in at least 13 countries. "Smile" has the same type of synth groove that dominated Pete Shelley's second solo album, XL-1. She turns Gershwin's "The Man I Love" into a quirky little ditty that sounds both dark and fun at the same time. "Bring It on Home to Me" becomes an upbeat Motown-influenced pop tune laced with nice keyboard work. Even fun tracks like "I Don't Know" and "Mystifies" may appear lightweight, but there's just enough meat on them to keep them from floating away. At points, she does seem to be trying too hard to be "current," but overall, Hazel O'Connor proves that she has talent to burn on Smile. With bonus tracks including a post-album single and some remixes, this is a nice reminder of an overlooked album from a worthwhile musician. And actress. And author. And former model. And....
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/13/2008
  • Label: Cherry Red Uk
  • EAN: 5013929134928
  • Catalog Number: 349
  • Sales rank: 222,993

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Just Good Friends (4:16)
  2. 2 Don't Touch Me (3:42)
  3. 3 I'm So Sorry (3:18)
  4. 4 Tell Me a Story (3:47)
  5. 5 Smile (3:29)
  6. 6 Cuts Too Deep (3:43)
  7. 7 The Man I Love (3:47)
  8. 8 I Don't Know (3:46)
  9. 9 Mystifies (3:52)
  10. 10 Bring It on Home to Me (2:40)
  11. 11 Spancill Hill (4:08)
  12. 12 Fire Away (2:22)
  13. 13 Today Could Be So Good (3:33)
  14. 14 We Tried (3:01)
  15. 15 Don't Touch Me (8:46)
  16. 16 Just Good Friends (5:13)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Hazel O'Connor Primary Artist, Keyboards, Vocals
Martin Rushent Interviewee
Technical Credits
George Gershwin Composer
Sam Cooke Composer
Ira Gershwin Composer
Hazel O'Connor Composer
Neil O'Connor Composer, Producer, Liner Notes
James Phelan Artwork
Martin Rushent Composer, Producer, Audio Production
Alex Ogg Liner Notes, Sleeve Notes
Andrew Christian Art Direction
Traditional Composer
Scott Davies Remastering, Project Concept
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