Working Through It: Ultravox – Vienna



I had to start somewhere, so why not here? I rescued this album out of the 2 for $3 bin at a local record shop earlier this year.  Ultravox was a new wave outfit out of London that saw some success in the early 80’s. I really only knew them for the hyper-emotional track Dancing With Tears in My Eyes that appeared on a few compilations over the years and hadn’t given them much more thought until I came across this record.

Vienna is the definition of an early 80’s synth-pop/rock album. It’s a collection of songs that reflect a range of styles and influences which makes it almost sound like a compilation album. New Europeans is a mix of pompy guitars and keyboards while Mr. X is a cold, futuristic ballad that would have fit in nicely on any late 70’s Kraftwerk album. Vienna is the standout track on the album. It is a bit of an epic — full of long pauses, dramatic orchestration, and bursts of emotion in every vocal note.

I actually play this album far more than I thought I would. A lesson for me as I really had low expectations when I spotted it in that 2 for $3 bin.



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