20 October 2021
Anniversary album: UGLY BEAUTIFUL – 6th LP
Released: 21 October 1996 – 25 years ago tomorrow
Independent (UK newspaper) wrote at the time: Another South Yorkshire sexual
ironist to set alongside Jarvis, Babybird’s Stephen Jones delves here into clefts and
crannies most people would rather leave unprobed. Dizzy with the deceptive power of
words, for instance, he never leaves a pun unspoken… the most noticeable result of Jones’s decision to re-record several of the songs from his four previous solo Baby Bird LPs with his
new backing band, a durable group able to turn their hand to all manner of pop strategies, from the wistful Mediterranean MOR of “Bad Shave” to the trip-hop of “Atomic Soda”. The improvements are significant. It’s not just that the songs sound less like dashed-off demos – there is also an increased depth of musical character to them, which renders them more
like collective notions rather than the mad imaginings of a marginalised loner.
Turn Up The Volume: In a ‘normal’ world Jones should be up there with the best singer/songwriters/crooners such as Nick Cave, Matt Berninger, Matt Sweeney, Leonard Cohen (no, I’m not an idiot), and several other mood swing artists who love to mess
up your mind, heart, and soul.
Ugly Beautiful is where Jones translates his imaginative and twisted world into brilliant pop songs like Goodnight, Jesus Is My Girlfriend (song title!), Atomic Soda, Dead Birds Sing (tower of song) and of course the hits, You’re So Gorgeous and Candy Girl . Fuck the normal world, Ugly Beautiful is a masterpiece in my twisted world.
Singles/clips: Goodnight / You’re Gorgeous / Candy Girl
– GOODNIGHT –
– YOU’RE GORGEOUS –
– CANDY GIRL –