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Spark to a Flame - The Very Best of Chris de Burgh

Chris de Burgh

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Album Review

Covering all of his crucial eighties material, Spark to a Flame: The Very Best of Chris de Burgh offers up most of this songwriter's best work, while also including a few of his better pieces from early in his career. The decade took apt notice of de Burgh, giving him two Top 40 hits on Billboard with "Don't Pay the Ferryman" in 1983 and the hugely successful "Lady in Red" in 1987, which are both included on this set. Three of his most delightful narratives from the '70s show up here as well, with "Spanish Train," "A Spaceman Came Travelling," and "Patricia the Stripper," all from the highly regarded Spanish Train and Other Stories album. The asset of Spark to a Flame comes from the fact that de Burgh's best singles can be heard here without the other ho-hum material from their respective albums getting in the way. For example, songs like "Sailing Away"and "Say Goodbye to It All" add value to this compilation, as they were easily their parent album's best material. His most explosive tune, "High on Emotion" from 1984's Man on the Line album, is another welcomed addition, as is the refined fervor of "Ship to Shore" from The Getaway. Even though "Crusader" is nearly nine minutes in length, its addition to this compilation would have raised its stakes, as it's one of his best story songs. Although many of his amiable ballads and love songs from his early albums didn't make their way to this set, Spark to a Flame still stands as a suitable best-of. If owned, so should 1981's Best Moves for a greater cross-section of de Burgh's illustrious career.

Biography

Born: 15 October 1948 in Argentina

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

An art rocker who occasionally writes pop-oriented material, Chris de Burgh has never been as popular in his native Britain or the United States as he was in other areas of the world. In America, he's only managed two Top 40 hits — 1983's "Don't Pay the Ferryman" (number 34) and the number three ballad "The Lady in Red" (1986). In Britain, he's had the same number of Top 40 singles — "The Lady in Red" was a number one hit and "Missing You" peaked at number...
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Spark to a Flame - The Very Best of Chris de Burgh, Chris de Burgh
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