As but tribute albums is so much skepticism is in order. Often abused just the famous name and the popularity of the artist to be celebrated. Many such albums are best of middling quality: originals will be added flat, some with identical arrangements, singers are creepy, and it lacks the courage or the musicianship, elicit something new from the models and to confront the listener with it..
Anyway, I personally expect from a good tribute album that I experience something beyond the known, that my interest is piqued, and I get that, if necessary, demonstrated the originals from a different angle and see can. And not just with one or two pieces on an album, but rather in the majority of the contributions.
This is a high bar, certainly, but "Spirit of Talk Talk", this is achieved!
Anyway, I'm tuned very enthusiastic, from the complete works. At first I was skeptical that it would be a double album, then? Quantity instead of quality? After listening and enjoying, I think: yes, but, absolutely. While there is no wild new interpretations or deconstructive sound avant-garde, but the quality of all posts is generally at a very high, adequate and consistent level. It is one of the few albums in which I can say (for me) that it is consistently listenable without failure, and even with a double album: Respect!
Certainly, there is in my opinion no Burner among the nearly 30 titles, and Spirit of Talk Talk is good stylistically less for a 80-Revival Party for fidgeting. Many pieces are, as well as the most original, pretty introverted behavior and orchestrated. You can hear and feel but this respect for the musicians before, what they have touched since. So nothing is really disfiguring, but quite different, sometimes surprising. And this is m. E. have been the right way to approach the album.
Personal favorites, there are some. The opener 'Wealth' Lone Wolf has delighted me with its simple organ carpet and the clear voice of the singer. Even Duncan Sheik's 'Life's what you make it' impressed me with its simple, unhurried interpretation. I think that it is precisely these reduced, acoustic arrangements which work out the core of the pieces and the listener present clear partly as the original. It pays to listen to the album in the dark, really listen. This is also the last track clear: 'I Believe In You' by Richard Reed Parry (Arcade Fire). He provides the piece with piano alone represents, creating a great atmospheric, almost sacred, density - and goose bumps.
That it also comes with more Drive show on the second CD The Tenfivesixty with a very rocking version of 'It's My Life'. And White Belt Yellow Tag failed in its sounding very much like New Wave and post-punk version of 'Today' something extra.
'Dum Dum' Girl by Alan Wilder (. Aka Recoil, Shara Worden feat as vocalist) is likewise impressive: less in the interpretation, because Alan Wilder provides a fairly typical work in his peculiar, pompous X-Files style from. Rather, it is the depth that can be found in sound and arrangement of this piece. "Soundscape" beschriebt it pretty good - because everything is in it, what The Thin Line blazes. I have only stereo with subwoofer at home, but even so one gets the impression in the middle of a dark, acoustic forest to stand at sunset: the light fades, behind many trees there are more trees and more and more shade, where moves slightly ... If someone has surround sound at home: this piece alone should justify the purchase!
My conclusion: as a child of the 80's and later TalkTalk fan I give the album a solid four stars. Who likes the band will find a very interesting and ambitious tribute album in the true sense that the historical oeuvre actually celebrating and can cheer this musical heritage with much dignity and without pathos or kitsch.
Who does not know the band as well and possibly only the singles like, will surely be disappointed: so lacking eg 'Such A Shame' on the tracklist, even under the optional download tracks.. But this is only a disappointment when you would expect with Spirit of TalkTalk something like a newly set to music, commercially oriented best-of. Spirit of TalkTalk but wants more, and achieves this also. Supply and listen worthwhile.
For connoisseurs of the matter therefore: absolutely worth listening to!