The Ballad of Etiquette

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Ned Raggett
Working in a field so ripe for parody as spoken word efforts takes, then as now, not a little bit of guts to see it through. Richard Jobson was barely out of his teens when The Ballad of Etiquette started coming together, but as his first full-length effort outside of the Skids it's an often entrancing release, not least because of his excellent backing band. Virginia Astley's flute and piano parts and the multi-instrumental work of Josephine Wells, notably on clarinet, as well as the brilliant John McGeoch's acoustic guitar work, provided a lovely, reflective bed of music suggestive of 1920s-style elegance more than beatnik coffeehouse jams. In a way Jobson wasn't even ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Ned Raggett
Working in a field so ripe for parody as spoken word efforts takes, then as now, not a little bit of guts to see it through. Richard Jobson was barely out of his teens when The Ballad of Etiquette started coming together, but as his first full-length effort outside of the Skids it's an often entrancing release, not least because of his excellent backing band. Virginia Astley's flute and piano parts and the multi-instrumental work of Josephine Wells, notably on clarinet, as well as the brilliant John McGeoch's acoustic guitar work, provided a lovely, reflective bed of music suggestive of 1920s-style elegance more than beatnik coffeehouse jams. In a way Jobson wasn't even taking center stage on his own album -- the first things you hear are piano and clarinet on "India Song" for about a minute and a half, and unlike so many would be Allen Ginsbergs or, more aptly, Jim Morrisons he works with rather than against the accompaniment. Perhaps the beautiful drama of "Anonymous" is the best example, with his wordless singing setting the initial tone rather than his poetry. That said Jobson's own delivery is often strikingly harsh -- not shouted or ranted, certainly, but roughly declamatory, a surely intentional contrast to the music. His poetic imagery is defiantly dreamlike, portraying sketches of romantic melodrama in strange settings or internal monologues. One of his most striking efforts is the stark, percussion-only "Night of Crystal," an imagined dialogue between Nazi leaders Albert Speer and Josef Goebbels, while selections by Debussy and Satie were reworked on the album -- not to mention a surprising take on the jazz standard "Stormy Weather." [LTM's 2006 reissue adds six tracks, including various pieces, live and studio, recorded before The Ballad of Etiquette and released on compilation albums, notably including "Armoury Show," which would eventually provide the name of Jobson's post-Skids band, and a fierce version of Sylvia Plath's "Daddy" with some hilariously timely references to Ultravox's "Vienna" to boot.]
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/7/2006
  • Label: Ltm
  • EAN: 5024545386127
  • Catalog Number: 2427

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 India Song (8:22)
  2. 2 Don't Ever Tell Anybody Anything (3:37)
  3. 3 Joy (4:21)
  4. 4 Etiquette (1:17)
  5. 5 Pavilion Pole (5:10)
  6. 6 Thomas (3:34)
  7. 7 Anonymous (5:12)
  8. 8 Night of Crystal (4:07)
  9. 9 Orphee (5:53)
  10. 10 Stormy Weather (3:19)
  11. 11 Armoury Show (1:19)
  12. 12 India Song (7:55)
  13. 13 Orphee (6:43)
  14. 14 Daddy (7:16)
  15. 15 India Song (6:21)
  16. 16 Etiquette the Ballad (1:35)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Richard Jobson Primary Artist, Vocals, Spoken Word
Virginia Astley Flute, Piano
John McGeoch Guitar
Russell Webb Accompaniment
Josephine Wells Clarinet, Piano, Soprano Saxophone
Technical Credits
Erik Satie Composer
Harold Arlen Composer
Blaine L. Reininger Arranger
Virginia Astley Arranger, Composer
Steven Brown Arranger
Claude Debussy Composer
Rene Eyre Illustrations
Richard Jobson Arranger, Composer, Cover Design, Cover Painting
John McGeoch Composer
Russell Webb Composer
Josephine Wells Composer
Ted Koehler Composer
James Nice Liner Notes
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