Friday, May 17, 2019

Song of the Day: 'All the Queen's Horses' by Shakespears Sister

I'm not sure there's ever been a more seamless return from a band that hasn't recorded in nearly three decades than this. Not only is the song vintage Sister, director Sophie Muller deftly incorporates the dysfunctional duo's checkered past into the video that brilliantly encapsulates what Siobhan Fahey calls "how ridiculous" they were for "not talking for 26 years!"

BTW: For casual fans who don't know the backstory, get a load of this. Shakespears Sister was Siobhan's post-Bananarama solo project. But it eventually evolved into a duo with Marcella Detroit -- albeit more of a 70-30 arrangement. But after a moderately successful first album, it was the second single from their sophomore LP -- a song called "Stay" -- that made them internationally successful. Fahey, who was already a past winner of a Zelda Fitzgerald Emotional Maturity Award, was clearly unhappy that the one song Marcella sang "lead" on became a chart-topper and the duo's "signature song." That both women had babies around this time -- the album was called "Hormonally Yours," after all -- and Siobhan was rumored to have had a heroin problem at one point only fueled the divide. So what did my top banana do? When the band was nominated (and won) a bunch of honors at the 1993 Ivor Novello Awards, Siobhan stayed home (to pout), opting to send her publisher to read an acceptance speech when the band won "best contemporary collection of songs." The statement contained a note to Marcella, wishing her "all the best for the future -- all's well that ends well" -- which Marcella heard for the first time, sitting in the ballroom in front of a room full of her peers. (To her credit, Siobhan checked herself into a psychiatric hospital shortly after the incident, which I believe was also around the same time as her divorce from Dave Stewart and the loss of custody of her kids for a while.) 

I for one would think that no amount of time or discussion could repair a vindictive and humiliating move like that. But based on THIS INTERVIEW, it sounds like it took two to tango, and they're both happy to be working together again!

Video's best moment: When Siobhan rolls her eyes when Marcella steals the scene -- just as she did in "Stay"! It's a testament to Marcella's ability to forgive and Siobhan's ability to be self-effacing that they're where they are now. 

P.S. Has anyone else noticed that the other new song on the "Singles Party" album is called "C U Next Tuesday." Is it possible this is a cover of a Keisha song that was included as a bonus track on her 2010 "Animal" LP?


I noticed this "Run Silent, Run Deep" b-side -- a complete homage to Phil Spector -- is included on the upcoming compilation album. Forgot that it's better than some of the songs on "Sacred Heart"!

1 comment:

OneCharmingBastard aka OCB aka JRJ said...

Siobhan's my spirit animal, and is always a fascinating read/listen/watch - Marcy is equally intense, and though they have each made music on their own that soundtracks my life (Shuv's #3 is a dark masterpiece IMHO, and Marcy had several killer singles herself including the stellar I Hate You Now), they bring out the best in each other, like the new single - it sounds like nothing else they've done yet it is distinctly them. I'm over the moon they're back.