Size Isn't Everything

 "Paying The Price of Love"

Barry: It's about a wonderful relationship that's gone wrong, and the personsinging the song is, as always, paying the price... the person who's most in love.

Robin: It took about half an hour to write. In general, the best songs do come the quickest.

Maurice: This is one of the first songs we wrote. We write like we used to, just the technology has changed. There is a place for drum machines if you use them correctly. We wanted a groove that was exceptionally danceable, that was commercial.

Barry: We wanted something everybody might want to sing along to. It's more of a European flavour than American. We recorded the song about three or four different ways, and organically, that was the best version.

Robin: I'm really into great constructed pop records, and this is the kind of record I can get my teeth into... a great verse and chorus, a great payoff. Personally, one of my favourites.

"Kiss Of Life"

Robin: One of the first things we wrote for the album... about a year and a half ago.

Maurice: We weren't sure that the song would stand up to the rest, and it wasn't until we started doing the lyrics that we thought, 'This is gonna be really good when we're finished.'

Robin: I love the title; it's a great title to sing.

Maurice: We wanted a song with plenty of harmony... a pop sixties song done today.

Barry: We like Phil Collins, and we wanted to do something in that vein, where there are lots of harmonic hooks in the choruses. A lot of Beach Boys influence in that track... the vocal breakdown in the middle was Beach Boys influenced. In saying that, we were probably influenced by a lot of different vocal styles through the years, and we want to incorporate them into this album.

"How To Fall In Love, Part One"

Maurice: This was a song we wrote about a year before we started the album. The idea was put down on a cassette, and we never really finished it.

Robin: It's a combination of two different songs put together at the end of the day. It started with a line Barry had and a verse line that I had.

Maurice: The point is, every time you really fall in love, experience goes out the window.

Barry: It's an R&B ballad, influenced a little bit by Elton John... perhaps R&B music as a while. It's the one song my wife keeps singing. It's the one song that I feel is probably the biggest single, and it might be the one that gets ignored. What I think is the hit usually doesn't get put out. I usually get outvoted. Still, it's my favourite on the new album.

Maurice: I think Barry's vocal is brilliant.

"Omega Man"

Barry: One of the first things we wrote, and one of the least favourites for at least six months. We worked on this LP for almost a year and a half, and all along, we thought, maybe this will be on the album and maybe it won't.

Maurice: This song is me... the last man on Earth. It's from a Charlton Heston film I saw once, where he plays the hero here to save the world. It's a very Beatlesque track... Mersey Beat type of thing that was going on in the '60s.

Robin: This is a song originally cut, it was even more Beatleish, with vibrato guitars. I suggested to our engineer, Femi Jiya, that I'd like to re-cut this track and make it a lot more moodier and sensual.

Barry: I sang the original demo, but when Maurice did the vocal, it had that little bit of humour that I thought was missing.

"Haunted House"

Barry: Another of my favourites. Very Gothic. To me, we all have different visions, but we all have the same one. And the end of a marriage, suddenly you have a house full of empty rooms, and you're haunted by the person you lived with.

Robin: One of my favourites, too. I like the theme of a guy being haunted by memories. It's a very strong story line. The song was originally called "Lambs To The Slaughter," but we decided that was a little too blood curdling, although you can hear us singing that title in the lyric.

Maurice: Great keyboard sounds on this one. Wanted it to be haunting, very moody and atmospheric. That's something that I adore doing. I love to create effects like that, that get you into the mood of the song. Listen to it on heaphones. The stereo just widens.

"Heart Like Mine"

Robin: One of my personal favourites. What really inspired me to do this is Clannad, the Irish folk group. Enya was originally a member of the group. I like their vocal sounds, and I wanted to do something in that vein, that kind of chemistry.

Barry: Once again, that's sort of Beach Boys influenced. We loved their original music and harmonies, Brian Wilson's work. Some of that creeps in there too. A very compelling vocal from Robin. Fantastic. Reminds me a bit of Aaron Neville.

Maurice: This is the kind of song built for Robin's very teary type voice. His vocal is unbelievable on this... classic Robin. When I first heard the vocal, that little bit at the end of each chorus... ooh, it just broke me up, and I knew that it was a very emotional song. He's alone but he knows there's someone out there for him. That's basically the plot of this song.

"Anything For You"

Barry: This one's just for fun... not too heavy. It's purely a sexual innuendo, hopefully a good dance groove. Dancing is the rhythm of the soul, that goes back thousands of years. Sometimes I feel a bit like Glenn Miller. Just because people want to dance to your music doesn't mean it's a bad thing.

Maurice: We wrote about six songs for the album up front, the rest, we started jamming about and this one is us just having fun.

"Blue Island"

Maurice: This is not the "Blue Island" we think of with palm trees, near Tahiti. It's a "Blue Island" taken from a book that was written about afterlife. It says that England is green and on the other side it's blue. This is for the children of Bosnia, that the "Blue Island" out there is a better life after this, so don't worry.

Robin: We didn't want to make an actual statement about kids dying, but we are talking about the children of Bosnia in that song.

Maurice: We did it acoustically, and sang it live at the same time. It's our "Unplugged" track if you will. We did it all in one go. It took about five takes. We all sat in a circle, Me on the twelve string, Barry and our other guitarist Alan Kendall on six string and Gustava Lezcano on harmonica. We dimmed the lights down low and cut it. The only thing that's overdubbed is the keyboard. At the last minute, Barry suggested that we have a warm sounding keyboard on the second half, and I dubbed that on. The whole song was a lovely experience.

Barry: This is our dedication to the children of Yugoslavia. That's what the song is about. Listen to the lyrics with that in mind, it gives you a whole different vision. I'm very angry that we're not taking a much stronger stand. We seem to be very frustrated as civilization to not be able to stop what's going on. We should know how to stop something like this. But whatever you say, it doesn't seem adequate. That's why we're gonna do a show this year, where everybody does one of our songs, and all of the proceeds will go to the children of Yugoslavia.

"Above and Beyond"

Robin: Tamla influences on that... a song that harks back to that soul era of Motown. It's the same kind of thing we did for "Chain Reaction" with Diana Ross.

 Barry: Just a positive, uplifting attitude. This is one of the songs we were in doubt about, but Maurice wanted to sing it, and he did a really nice job.

Maurice: My pop contribution... a song that everyone could sing along with. I wanted to let people know I could do another thing besides "Omega Man".

"For Whom The Bell Tolls"

Robin: We wanted to do a traditional power ballad, and this is the one folks. Although the verse is less traditional than we're accustomed to..."

Maurice: This is like "How Can You Mend A Broken Heart", a class Bee Gees epic. To me, it's like "Fanny Be Tender...".

"Fallen Angel"

Maurice: I like the Pet Shop Boys...

Robin: Although they are traditional dance grooves, there's something about Pet Shop Boys that American groups don't use in their grooves. It's a European groove which is quite tonic when you hear it in America, because you don't hear it so much.