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Human League - Dare!

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Dare!

The Human League

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Dare! captures a moment in time perfectly -- the moment post-punk's robotic fascination with synthesizers met a clinical Bowie-esque infatuation with fashion and modern art, including pop culture, plus a healthy love of songcraft. The Human League had shown much of this on their early singles, such as "Empire State Human," but on Dare! they simply gelled, as their style was supported by music and songs with emotional substance. That doesn't mean that the album isn't arty, since it certainly is, but that's part of its power -- the self-conscious detachment enhances the postmodern sense of emotional isolation, obsession with form over content, and love of modernity for its own sake. That's why Dare! struck a chord with listeners who didn't like synth pop or the new romantics in 1981, and why it still sounds startlingly original decades after its original release -- the technology may have dated, synths and drum machines may have become more advanced, but few have manipulated technology in such an emotionally effective way. Of course, that all wouldn't matter if the songs themselves didn't work smashingly, whether it's a mood piece as eerie as "Seconds," an anti-anthem like "The Things That Dreams Are Made Of," the dance club glow of "Love Action (I Believe in Love)," or the utter genius of "Don't You Want Me," a devastating chronicle of a frayed romance wrapped in the greatest pop hooks and production of its year. The latter was a huge hit, so much so that it overshadowed the album in the minds of most listeners, yet, for all of its shining brilliance, it wasn't a pop supernova -- it's simply the brightest star on this record, one of the defining records of its time.
© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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Dare!

Human League

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1
The Things That Dreams Are Made Of 2002 Mix
00:04:17

Ian Burden, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Martin Rushent, Producer - Simon Heyworth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - The Human League, Producer, MainArtist - Phil Oakey, Composer, Vocals, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Allen, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Philip Wright, Performer, AssociatedPerformer - Joanne Catherall, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Susanne Sulley, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Adrian Wright, Composer - Jo Callis, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer

(C) 2003 Virgin Records LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2003 Virgin Records Ltd ℗ 2002 Virgin Records Ltd

2
Open Your Heart 2002 Mix
00:03:55

Ian Burden, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Martin Rushent, Producer - Simon Heyworth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - The Human League, Producer, MainArtist - Phil Oakey, Composer, Vocals, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Allen, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Philip Wright, Performer, AssociatedPerformer - Joanne Catherall, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Susanne Sulley, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Jo Callis, Composer, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer

(C) 2003 Virgin Records LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2003 Virgin Records Ltd ℗ 2002 Virgin Records Ltd

3
The Sound Of The Crowd 2002 Mix
00:04:06

Ian Burden, Composer, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Martin Rushent, Producer - Simon Heyworth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - The Human League, Producer, MainArtist - Phil Oakey, Composer, Vocals, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Allen, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Philip Wright, Performer, AssociatedPerformer - Joanne Catherall, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Susanne Sulley, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Jo Callis, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer

(C) 2003 Virgin Records LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2003 Virgin Records Ltd ℗ 2002 Virgin Records Ltd

4
Darkness Remaster 2002
00:03:58

Ian Burden, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Martin Rushent, Producer - Simon Heyworth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - John Callis, Composer - The Human League, Producer, MainArtist - Phil Oakey, Vocals, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Allen, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Philip Wright, Performer, AssociatedPerformer - Joanne Catherall, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Susanne Sulley, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Adrian Wright, Composer - Jo Callis, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer

(C) 2003 Virgin Records LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2003 Virgin Records Ltd ℗ 2002 Virgin Records Ltd

5
Do Or Die Remaster 2002
00:05:24

Ian Burden, Composer, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Martin Rushent, Producer - Simon Heyworth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - The Human League, Producer, MainArtist - Phil Oakey, Composer, Vocals, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Allen, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Philip Wright, Performer, AssociatedPerformer - Joanne Catherall, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Susanne Sulley, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Jo Callis, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer

(C) 2003 Virgin Records LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2003 Virgin Records Ltd ℗ 2002 Virgin Records Ltd

6
Get Carter Remaster 2002
00:01:01

Ian Burden, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Martin Rushent, Producer - Simon Heyworth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - The Human League, Producer, MainArtist - Phil Oakey, Vocals, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Allen, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Philip Wright, Performer, AssociatedPerformer - Joanne Catherall, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Susanne Sulley, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Jo Callis, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Roy Budd, Composer

(C) 2003 Virgin Records LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2003 Virgin Records Ltd ℗ 2002 Virgin Records Ltd

7
I Am The Law Remaster 2002
00:04:08

Ian Burden, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Martin Rushent, Producer - Simon Heyworth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - The Human League, Producer, MainArtist - Phil Oakey, Composer, Vocals, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Allen, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Philip Wright, Performer, AssociatedPerformer - Joanne Catherall, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Susanne Sulley, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Adrian Wright, Composer - Jo Callis, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer

(C) 2003 Virgin Records LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2003 Virgin Records Ltd ℗ 2002 Virgin Records Ltd

8
Seconds Remaster 2002
00:04:58

Ian Burden, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Martin Rushent, Producer - Simon Heyworth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - John Callis, Composer - The Human League, Producer, MainArtist - Phil Oakey, Composer, Vocals, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Dave Allen, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Philip Wright, Performer, AssociatedPerformer - Joanne Catherall, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Susanne Sulley, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Adrian Wright, Composer - Jo Callis, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer

(C) 2003 Virgin Records LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2003 Virgin Records Ltd ℗ 2002 Virgin Records Ltd

9
Love Action (I Believe In Love)
00:05:00

Ian Burden, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Martin Rushent, Producer - Simon Heyworth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - The Human League, Producer, MainArtist - Phil Oakey, Vocals, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Dave Allen, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Philip Wright, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Joanne Catherall, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Susanne Sulley, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Jo Callis, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Ian Charles Burden, ComposerLyricist

(C) 2003 Virgin Records LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2003 Virgin Records Ltd ℗ 2002 Virgin Records Ltd.

10
Don't You Want Me
00:03:56

Ian Burden, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - Martin Rushent, Producer - Simon Heyworth, Mastering Engineer, StudioPersonnel - The Human League, Producer, MainArtist - Phil Oakey, Vocals, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Dave Allen, Asst. Recording Engineer, StudioPersonnel - Philip Wright, PhotographyDirector - Joanne Catherall, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Susanne Sulley, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Adrian Wright, ComposerLyricist - Jo Callis, Synthesizer, AssociatedPerformer - John William Callis, ComposerLyricist

(C) 2003 Virgin Records LtdThis label copy information is the subject of copyright protection. All rights reserved.(C) 2003 Virgin Records Ltd ℗ 2002 Virgin Records Ltd

Album Description

Dare! captures a moment in time perfectly -- the moment post-punk's robotic fascination with synthesizers met a clinical Bowie-esque infatuation with fashion and modern art, including pop culture, plus a healthy love of songcraft. The Human League had shown much of this on their early singles, such as "Empire State Human," but on Dare! they simply gelled, as their style was supported by music and songs with emotional substance. That doesn't mean that the album isn't arty, since it certainly is, but that's part of its power -- the self-conscious detachment enhances the postmodern sense of emotional isolation, obsession with form over content, and love of modernity for its own sake. That's why Dare! struck a chord with listeners who didn't like synth pop or the new romantics in 1981, and why it still sounds startlingly original decades after its original release -- the technology may have dated, synths and drum machines may have become more advanced, but few have manipulated technology in such an emotionally effective way. Of course, that all wouldn't matter if the songs themselves didn't work smashingly, whether it's a mood piece as eerie as "Seconds," an anti-anthem like "The Things That Dreams Are Made Of," the dance club glow of "Love Action (I Believe in Love)," or the utter genius of "Don't You Want Me," a devastating chronicle of a frayed romance wrapped in the greatest pop hooks and production of its year. The latter was a huge hit, so much so that it overshadowed the album in the minds of most listeners, yet, for all of its shining brilliance, it wasn't a pop supernova -- it's simply the brightest star on this record, one of the defining records of its time.
© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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