Like the Deserts Miss the Rain

by: Everything But the Girl

The first Everything but the Girl collection to effectively juggle the duo's largely acoustic early recordings and more electronic later work (or to even make the attempt), Like the Deserts Miss the Rain is the perfect place for fans of either period to investigate their full career. Since their musical aesthetic rarely diverted from spare, elegant, melancholy pop (whether the instrumentation was a small group with horn chart or keyboards with beat-heavy rhythms), the disc flows smoothly from their 1996 drum'n'bass version of the Brazilian standard "Corcovado" (from Red Hot + Rio) to 1984's acoustic bossa "Each and Every One" to a Chicane remix of "Before Today." Another nice touch is including Tracey Thorn's best outside appearance -- on Massive Attack's "Protection" -- and a pair of great songs from a 1993 single, including a startlingly effective version of Captain Beefheart's "My Head Is My Only House Unless It Rains." Similar to 2001's Home Movies collection, Like the Deserts Miss the Rain has a few surprising omissions (nothing from 1988's gorgeous Idlewild?) but does succeed in delivering great material from one of British pop's most talented artists. ~ John Bush

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