Sharoma Thompson Twins Babble


The name change to Babble partly signified a move from pop songs and ballads towards techno, ambient and sampling and also to throw off the shackles that the name "Thompson Twins" had attached to Tom and Alannah as a musical force. For many, it means the 1983 image of the band. Wild and colourful haircuts, simplistic electronic beats and low budget videos. The later Thompson Twins club releases (that were already showcasing the sound of Babble to a certain extent) were released under the name Feedback Max so that clubs would actually play rather than dismiss them. The clubs did, until they found out the artists behind them. Sadly, the Babble name change still didn't garner up any commercial success for the band, and their popularity had been waning significantly ever since 1986. However, anyone who has heard the two Babble albums can vouch for their excellence.

The Stone [1993]

The Stone
  1. The Downward Pull Of Heaven's Force
  2. Tribe
  3. You Kill Me
  4. Spirit
  5. Take Me Away
  6. The Stone
  7. Beautiful
  8. Space
  9. Sunray Dub
  10. Drive
My signed tape

In 1993 the Thompson Twins name was retired after 16 long years, and the name Babble announced the arrival of Tom, Alannah and Keith Fernley as a unit with a different approach. Insead of writing "Hold Me Nows" for some record company the band set about writing truly atmospheric and uplifting music. A trip through India seemed to inspire them, and the result is quite superb, and in its own way this is the better than the output of the Thompson Twins. It flows perfectly from start to finish, constantly shifting from one style to another. An ambient classic, and very similar at times to Dead Can Dance's Into The Labyrinth (especially the title track).

Ether [1996]

  1. The Circle
  2. Just Like You
  3. Sun
  4. Love Has No Name
  5. Dark
  6. Tower
  7. Come Down
  8. Hold The Sky
  9. Into Ether
  10. Dreamfield
Inner photo

The Babble catalogue consists of just two excellent albums, both equally superb (though personally I prefer The Stone) and yet quite different in their approach to the ambient genre. A particular favourite of mine is Just Like You. Alannah Currie seems to have found her best vocal style with this song.