Crimson/Red / Paddy McAloon / Prefab Sprout

Paddy for Number One

By Miranda Diboll

We make no bones about it here on RepHERtoire, we love Prefab Sprout. Paddy McAloon has been churning out his heartbreakingly beautiful melodies and mind twisting lyrics, all sung in that breathy voice of his for the past 37 years. Not everyones taste, sometimes too obtuse for the public’s liking and that NAME has never really helped. But the NAME is meant to mean nothing, we can hang no meaning on it after all. As Paddy intended.

Their 1986 sophomore album ‘Steve McQueen’ brought the band into the mainstream, got critics jumping up and down , music buffs and casual album buyers dashing to the record stores. It was a staple of mid 80s student bedsit life. Some say he never topped Steve, was it ‘the last great thing he did’? I would say no, many would say yes.

So here we have Crimson/Red. In 2013 when perhaps people are buying intelligent and melodic music again, not the ‘kids’ but world weary middle aged folk like myself. It looks like its going to be a hit and it’s almost as good as Steve McQueen.  When Paddy regrets being alone with his computer on this album, we regret with him. Because had Neil, Wendy and Martin been playing on this Crimson/Red could easily be called ‘The best Sprout album ever’. And on Sunday, it may even get to number one in the UK albums charts.  Now that would be something.

Crimson/Red out today on CD, download and 180 gm vinyl


The last time we saw Paddy so happy about record sales…

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