13 September 2020

Love and Tears - Needles And Pins/ And Your Love Is

Fantastic amped up wall of sound take on the classic track

Label: Polydor
Year of Release: 1972

Well then, of all the cheapo obscure Polydor singles I didn't expect to make an impression on me this month, this was one of them. On the surface, this sounds unpromising. The appallingly named Love and Tears were a German pop act who were previously known as The Blue Moons throughout the sixties, and under that moniker supported The Hollies on the German leg of their tour. 

Their records tended to be on the chirpy side of pop, closer to "Jennifer Eccles" than "He Ain't Heavy..." if we're comparing them to their touring partners. Feelgood records pumped full of handclaps, candyfloss melodies and fast rhythms tended to be their deal. When I stumbled on this record, then, I expected a version of The Searchers' "Needles and Pins" which didn't deviate that far from the original, but I got that utterly wrong. The song starts dramatically almost immediately, before dropping back into organ-drenched moodiness, then steadily building itself into a majestic Spector-esque arrangement. This is by far the most epic version of "Needles and Pins" you're likely to hear. Just when you suspect its hit the peak, you realise there's another steep musical slope just around the corner and it's going to climb to even greater heights, thudding, thwacking and hollering its way to the top of its emotional Everest. 

Almost unbelievably, this wasn't a hit to the same degree that their work as The Blue Moons was, and while the Love and Tears carried on until 1974, their impact was rather more muted in the seventies. Copies of their solitary "Love And Tears" LP tend to be somewhat expensive on Discogs these days, suggesting a greater demand for their epic take on classic sixties songwriting than existed at the time. 

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