Homesick And Blue
Burton Mail 28th April 2001

Deacon Blue - Homesick (Papillion *****).

It's eight years since Deacon Blue's last original studio album so what a welcomed return is Homesick - the bands latest album. Featuring the band's new single Everytime You Sleep, the album is racy and upbeat. Songs featured have the very 'raw' sound Deacon Blue fans have come to love and appreciate including the brilliant Rae - the album's opening track. In many ways this is one of the best albums Deacon Blue have recorded since they formed in the eighties. It's less pop orientated, instead carrying with it a more 'earthy, rocky' sound of the Deacon Blue of old - this is without a doubt an album well worth waiting years for. - LW.

For many years Scottish rockers Deacon Blue were one of this of this country's leading bands with hit after hit in the 80s and 90s. Then things suddenly went very quiet - and Deacon Blue it seemed to many had simply vanished from the world of music. Yet a sell-out tour two years ago, a new album on the horizon and another tour coming up in May, is the start is what many fans hope will be a long awaited rise from the ashes.

The band's frontman - singer and songwriter Ricky Ross - is fairly blase about his band's overwhelming success but is obviously looking forward to the release of the album Homesick and new single Every Time You Sleep. Said Ross: "It's always hard to give an overview own your own music that's neutral, but I'm very happy with the new record. It's a pop album, although not anything like a manufactured band." The band was formed in 1985 by Ross who took the name from a Steely Dan song. Two years after extensive work in and around Glasgow, Deacon Blue's debut album Raintown was released - and a new phenomenon in music was born.

"We didn't have instant success," says Ross. "There was quite a lot of work and a lot of writing. When things finally did happen, we were obviously glad it worked for us and of course it all seemed great that it had." A year later a re-recording of Dignity, one of the bands earliest and most successful singles, was again released and went straight into the top 40 chart. Success after success followed with a limited double edition of Raintown managing a number 14 slot in the album charts, the success of the Real Gone Kid single, and later a number one album with When The World Knows Your Name.

Fergus Sings The Blues, Love And Regret and Queen Of The New Year followed as the band toured extensively throughout the UK, Europe and indeed the world. The band's popularity soared when Four Bacharach and David Sings reached number two in the charts and Ooh, Las Vegas, a collector's album of B-sides landed at number three in the album charts in 1990. Following further success in '91 and '92 the band shocked the world of music just two years later by announcing their split. "The main reason we split," says Ross, "was that there was nothing else for us to do. We had made four albums and we thought it would be difficult to continue _ we all thought we needed a break. "Then of course in '99 we did it all again with the tour. We didn't regret splitting but it was nice to be welcomed back with a sell-out tour."

During their rest away from the public as a band, the members of Deacon Blue all went their separate ways. Ross decided to stay in music and focus on a solo career. By his own admission he says his first record 'didn't really happen'. "It was hard work at times, so from that point of view I learned a lot of things, but I would still pursue that line in my career. "As a band we have got quite a lot on now with the single and the album and hopefully we will carry on. Next thing for me personally is a solo album which I was hoping to have finished by August, but it now looks like it will be next year. "The nice thing about Deacon Blue is that we simply do what we want to - and we enjoy it."   Louise Worrell.