Song of the Day, July 26: Softly Over by Yazoo

YazSoftlyBy the time they recorded their second album as Yazoo (Yaz in the U.S.), tensions between Alison Moyet and Vince Clarke were such that they rarely appeared in the studio at the same time. Despite those circumstances, they made one of the best synth-pop albums ever recorded; perhaps because of those circumstances, the potentially chilly songs resonate with real emotion.

One of the finest examples is Softly Over. Clarke provides a haunting, sometimes creepy backdrop, with spare synth chords and strange sound effects. He builds a sense of isolation and despair, over which Moyet provides a flawless vocal. Her rich voice — always the perfect foil for the keyboards — is hushed. The lyrics are a straightforward recital of loss, opening with “It’s over” and getting darker from there. All the elements coalesce into a marvelous, powerful whole, a standout on a nearly perfect disc.

Enjoy this haunting song today.

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About Robert Hulshof-Schmidt
Freelance writer, researcher, online comic vendor, and project manager. Fan of a wide range of music -- especially folk and 80s pop -- vintage comics, British TV, and LGBT fiction.

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