Boo Hewerdine & Darden Smith – Evidence (1989)

FrontCover1It’s criminal how overlooked this wonderful album has been in garnering the praise it deserves. Smith and Hewerdine, according to the narrative on the album’s label, were thrown together by record management types to collaborate on this work. (If you purchase this album, read the label. It gives an incredibly humorous account of the divergent viewpoints held by Smith and Hewerdine about the musicmaking process of “Evidence.”) In a total matter of weeks, they did all the composing and recording for “Evidence.” From the end result, you’d think at that point they had been friends and collaborators for years. There are some songs on this album that are best described as subtle masterpieces. For example, “First Chill of Winter” is a heartbreaking and beautiful piece, with the artists’ voices blending and building off each other in a seamless duet. The lyrics are also breathtaking: “I believe/I believe/I believe/…I just felt the first chill of winter/Was it you/Was it me/That let the coldness in?” “Evidence” is also a powerful song that perfectly captures the ironies and edginess of infidelity and betrayal: “We go dancing./Your eyes are always on the door…/Here comes the punchline right across the floor./He breaks in./We won’t be dancing anymore.” Not all of the songs on the album reach the heights of these two incredible numbers. However, if “First Chill of Winter” and “Evidence” are the two grand slams of the album, the rest of the work still pulls off an amazingly high ratio of home runs.

The EP from the “Evidence” album
JD Foster (bass)
Boo Hewerdine (vocals, guitar)
Sonny Landreth (guitar)
Paul Percy (drums, percussion)
Darden Smith (vocals, guitar)
Reese Wynans (keyboards)
Chris Birkett (percussion on 01.)
Martin Lascalles (keyboards on 03., 05., 08. + 10; synthesizer (bass) on 01., cymbales on 02.)
Syd Straw (background vocals on 04., 06. + 12.)

Alternate frontcover
01. All I Want (Is Everything) 2.55
02. Under The Darkest Moon 3.34
03. Reminds Me (A Little of You) 3.13
04. South By South-West 3.09
05. These Chains 2.41
06. The First Chill Of Winter 3.54
07. Out Of This World 3.09
08. Love Is A Strange Hotel 2.54
09. Evidence 3.51
10. Oil On The Water 3.43
11. Tell Me Why 5.01
12. Who, What, Where And Why?  4.40
13. A Town Called Blue 2.07

All songs written by Boo Hewerdine and Darden Smith