[Sweet Dreams] -- This week's Flashback album has, shall we say, "traveled the world and the seven seas" for four decades. Yes, I'm talking about Eurythmics' second studio album, Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This), the one that launched their career as synthpop megastars. This record was released forty years ago this week, or later this month, depending on the reference. Still, as most sources cite January 4, 1983, and even the band celebrated the milestone this very week, we, too, shall reckon the release date accordingly.
Eurythmics were still largely unknown at the time of this album's release. Their debut album had not done well. That lack of success drove them to go more DIY on their second album. They took out a loan to purchase an eight-track recording studio and some synthesizers, including a Movement Systems Drum Computer (which appears in the "Sweet Dreams" music video). The gamble paid off: The album's title track and fourth single, "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)," spent a total of 26 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100, even leaping to the #1 position. That one song, and its video, established Eurythmics as a global act. Just take a look at the single's peak position on various weekly charts. The album spent 59 weeks on the Billboard 200 albums chart and peaked at #15.
With "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)" enjoying success on both the radio and MTV (in a now classic music video featuring singer Annie Lennox dressed both as a man and a woman), the previous singles got a little more attention as well. "Love Is A Stranger," originally released ahead of the album in November, 1982, even got a music video. For my money, the standout songs, outside of the amazing title track, of course, are "I Could Give You (A Mirror)" and "Somebody Told Me." I think they even pull off a surprisingly effective cover of Sam & Dave's 1968 hit, "Wrap It Up." But, really, there isn't a clunker on the entire album. It truly is a masterpiece of electro-pop and new wave. It may be synthesizer driven, but there is nothing synthetic about Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This).
Flashback: Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) [January, 1983]
That's all till next week. Dedicated 80s-philes can find more flashbacks in the Prophet or Madman archives or via Bookended's 80s Flashback tag. As always, your comments are welcome on today's, or any other, flashback post. And if you like what I'm doing here, please share the link with your friends. If, however, you don't like the flashback, feel free to share it with your enemies.
I'll see you in seven!