Friday, September 7, 2007

The Blessing - Prince Of The Deep Water (1991)

You may notice that my definition of a "classic" album is different from the choices offered by Rolling Stone, the New Musical Express, and other publications. Many of my favorite albums saw limited release, had no hit singles and are largely unknown. Perhaps that's why I like them. A case in point is The Blessing, who were the victims of bad timing back in 1991. They certainly had the musical chops, and in lead singer William Topley, they possessed a singer with a unique and powerful voice. However, the world was going baggy at the time, and had no need for a cinematic, tightly produced album that exuded exotic locales, strange and dangerous characters and superb musicianship. Consequently, both the album and first single "Highway 5", a comparatively light track, slipped off the radar despite a favorable 4-star review in Q Magazine. The Blessing would issue one more album, and William Topley would go on to make several solo records in the same vein, often with one, two, or even all three of his former bandmates - for the record, Mike Westergaard (keyboards), Luke Brighty (guitars), and Kevin Hime-Knowles (bass). However, for me, POTDW remains the high water mark, with standout tracks including the Dire Straits-ish "Hurricane Room". the poignant ballad "Delta Rain" and the Rolling Stones meets Bruce Springsteen swagger of "I Want You".

The Blessing Prince of the Deep Water (1991)
01 Highway 5
02 Flames
03 Hurricane Room
04 Baby
05 Let's Make Love
06 Back From Managua
07 I Want You
08 Delta Rain
09 Birdhouse
10 Denial
11 Prince of the Deep Water

William Topley Official Website


Anonymous said...

Cheers for reminding me about this fantastic album, definitely in my "Top Ten Underrated Albums Ever" with the Go-between's "16 Lovers Lane", The The's "Infected" and everything by the Cocteau Twins.
My only disagreement would be about the stand-out track - IMHO the title track, "Prince of the Deep Water" - was it used in the soundtrack of "The Fisher King"? If not, it should have been.

Anonymous said...

Nice to find your Rapidshare! I have this album on vinyl. Looking for a long time to download on a lot of p2p places but no way.

Today in Amazon, if you want to buy this cd (new), must pay $88!

Thanks a lot!!!

Magpie said...

I am so excited. I discovered this album by chance in 1991, and it has stayed with me ever since. Exquisite, haunting and beautiful. One of my all-time favourite albums. I have never found another soul who has heard of the band, and tried to google it for years (before Google, I guess). Now I discover it's a Brit band. Should have known. I only have it on vinyl, and no means of playing it. Of course, I can't afford the CD. In South Africa, the Rand/Pound exchange rate is dire. Can anyone help? Mags

Anonymous said...

Hi! Great post! But, can i ask you a favor? Can you rip it again? Unfortunately, i found audio troubles in many tracks, specially in my favorite song "Highway 5"
Thanks in advance!