From the Vault...


"If I Was: The Very Best Of Midge Ure And Ultravox"

© Chrysalis Records


track listing
  • If I Was
  • No Regrets
  • Love's Great Adventure
  • Dear God
  • Cold Cold Heart
  • Vienna
  • Call Of The Wild
  • After A Fashion
  • Dancing With Tears
    In My Eyes
  • All Fall Down
  • Yellow Pearl
  • Fade To Grey
  • Reap The Wild Wind
  • Answers To Nothing
  • Do They Know
    It's Christmas
  • That Certain Smile
  • The Man Who Sold The World

  • WSVNRadio Archives
    A B C D E F G H I J K L M
    N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

    Ultravox related sites:
    Ultravox Website
    Previous Review: #1194
    Gary Numan--The Best Of Gary Numan 1978-1983
    Next Review: #1196
    Vangelis--Albedo 0.39
    "If I Was: The Very Best Of Midge Ure And Ultravox"

    Ultravox -- I was introduced to this 1980s New Wave band when I watched Live Aid in 1985. They performed 2 songs that stood out, "Vienna" and "Dancing With Tears In My Eyes." Both of these songs were on The Collection CD, but what made me get the If I Was: Very Best was the fact about Ultravox's frontman. James "Midge" Ure (pronounced like "your") was the lead singer (who he replaced vocalist John Foxx in 1979), co-wrote the Band Aid charity single "Do They Know It's Christmas" in 1984, (which Live Aid and USA For Africa would surface a year later). When researching the If I Was compilation, this collection is mostly songs from Midge Ure's solo career. (Obviously, the Band Aid song would make sense.) Only five songs from the band Ultravox is on this compilation. Two-thirds of this colleciton are Ure's solo singles, as well as hits recorded/written with Phil Lynott (of the band Thin Lizzy), Mick Karn (of the band Japan), and Band Aid (UK charity supergroup). Also included are his works with bands Visage, Silk and Rich Kids. Notice the title of this compilation: The Very Best Of Midge Ure And Ultravox ... Midge Ure first, Ultravox second... There's more of Ure's solo recordings than that of Ultravox.

    Definitely 1980s: New Order/Orchestra Manuevers In The Dark styled bands: "If I Was," "No Regrets," "Love's Great Adventure," "Dear God." "Cold Cold Heart" has a Wham! feel, "Vienna" is a great track, with it's synthesized keyboard arrangements. "Call Of The Wild" returns to the common 1980s sound, as mentioned from the 3 artists. "After A Fashion" (with Mick Karn) is just too weird for me, "Dancing With Tears In My Eyes" has a very early U2 sound, and is another great tune.

    "All Fall Down" is just ok, "Yellow Pearl" (co-written with Phil Lynott), is another track in the "least favorites" category, likewise "Fade To Grey" "Reap The Wild Wind" gets better, "Answers For Nothing," is fair, "Do They Know It's Christmas" is a CLASSIC, "That Certain Smile" didn't exactly put one on my face, and "The Man Who Sold The World" (David Bowie?) was weird.

    I'm sure there are die-hard Midge Ure and Ultravox fans out there, but it seems that the Ure/Ultravox and Ure/Solo were in different musical turns. It's obvious the Ultravox songs stand out, yet it doesn't want to make me rush out and collect the complete works of Ultravox and/or Midge Ure solo recordings. (Although die-hard fans would argue.) Yet, this is a good compilation for those who are not familiar with either Ultravox and Midge Ure. For Ultravox only, The Collection would be better, as that album will be reviewed here on at a later date.

    The standout tracks are (Ultravox) "Vienna," "Dancing With Tears In My Eyes" and (Band Aid) "Do They Know It's Christmas." The rest is simply 1980s pop/dance stuff. To some, its enjoyable, for others, not so enjoyable (insert the approriate word here). Ultravox interested me on Live Aid, and it was interesting to learn that Midge Ure co-wrote the Band Aid song, "Do They Know It's Christmas." As for Midge Ure and Ultravox today -- Ultravox recently reformed in 2009, celebrating the band's 30th anniversary (since Midge Ure joined; 1979-2009). No plans for new material from the band, but new compilation(s) of the band are in the works. Since 1977, Ultravox has recorded 10 studio albums.

    © All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Chrysalis Records and is used for reference purposes only.

    Previous Review: #1194
    Gary Numan--The Best Of Gary Numan 1978-1983
    Next Review: #1196
    Vangelis--Albedo 0.39