Another talented singer from Akron, Ohio whose career really got started outside her homeland. Accompanied here by a sharp four-piece English band otherwise known as the Edge, Aire works confidently through a solid set of tunes that includes the oft-recorded “Breaking Down the Walls of Heartache,” Pearl Harbor’s “Driving,” Holland-Dozier-Holland’s “Come See About Me,” plus some of producer Liam Sternberg’s better original compositions.
The Edge (the group) came about when guitarist Lu Edmonds and drummer Jon Moss (formerly of punk slouches London) left a brief and unrecorded incarnation of the Damned in 1978. With the addition of keyboardist Gavin Povey (who had played with Lew Lewis) and bassist Glyn Havard (whose long career has included stints with the Yachts and, er, Jade Warrior), the Edge fell together. They played behind Jane Aire as the Belvederes on her LP and appeared, nearly intact, on Kirsty MacColl’s first album. Subsequent to the Edge, Lu has worked in a number of bands, including Shriekback, the Spizzles and Public Image Ltd., while Jon Moss went on to temporary fame and fortune in Culture Club. Povey has done some additional recording with MacColl.
Oh yeah — about the music on Square One. Never quite blending into any particular style, the Edge’s eclectic, melodic rock has flashes of the Jam, Boomtown Rats, Deep Purple, Police and Stranglers — all united by the satirical outlook of amusing lyrics.