Artist: Dusty Springfield
Album: Come For a Dream: The U.K. Sessions 1970-1971
Label: Real Gone
Release Date: 08/07/2015
I have one bitch about Come For a Dream, but first I disclaim: with this release and the previous Faithful (Dusty’s third recording for Atlantic), Real Gone is doing real right by Dusty and those who still can’t get enough of this supremely gifted and supremely troubled artist.
Now, the bitch. Unlike Faithful, wherein Real Gone presents the album as it was sequenced, then includes bonus tracks, Come For a Dream scatters the nine tracks originally planned for the 1972 Phillips UK release See All Her Faces among the seventeen out-takes and cast-offs presented here. They’re not even in chronological or recording order.
But the curmudgeon in me takes a back seat to the power of these gems. Dusty makes Jimmy Webb’s “Mixed Up Girl,” with its propulsive drive and searching lyric, a true manifesto of her inner turmoil. Always keen on Goffin/King’s rolling pop perfections, Dusty’s empathy for “Wasn’t Born To Follow” makes one wonder why it wasn’t considered for the album. Charles Aznavour’s “Yesterday When I Was Young” is a pleading, yearning statement. With its crunchy guitars and girl group backing vocals, “Crumbs Off the Table” is one of Dusty’s harder edged recordings. An ethereal orchestra holds Dusty’s near whispered vocal aloft for the compelling “I Start Counting,” and “See All Her Faces” floats on classical Euro/American pop arrangement.
Despite these fine tracks, See All Her Faces and this new collection sound like a mishmash– an artist searching for relevance not only to herself but for her audience. Always her own worst critic, Springfield did little to promote both the original album and its singles. Such was the shame.
– Mike Jurkovic