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Released: June 9, 1992

Rating: 4.167 (average of 12 ratings)

Genre: adult alternative rock

Quotable: --

Album Tracks:

  1. Be My Downfall
  2. Just Like a Man
  3. When You Were Young
  4. Surface of the Moon
  5. I Won’t Take the Blame
  6. The First Rule of Love
  7. The Ones That You Love Lead You Nowhere
  8. Always the Last to Know
  9. To Last a Lifetime
  10. As Soon As the Tide Comes In
  11. Behind the Fool
  12. Sometimes I Just Have to Say Your Name

Total Running Time: 50:33

Sales (in millions):

sales in U.S. only --
sales in U.K. only - estimated --
sales in all of Europe as determined by IFPI – click here to go to their site. --
sales worldwide - estimated --


peak on U.S. Billboard album chart 178
peak on U.K. album chart 2

Singles/Hit Songs:

  • Always the Last to Know (5/9/92) #30 US, #13 UK, #18 AR, #11 MR, #42 AC
  • Be My Downfall (7/11/92) #30 UK
  • Just Like a Man (9/12/92) #25 UK
  • When You Were Young (1/23/93) #20 UK

Change Everything
Del Amitri
“Contrary to the album’s title,” SSChange Everything isn’t exactly a drastic departure from its predecessor, but it does sound like a great album rather than a collection of immaculately-crafted songs.” MB In comparing this album to the band’s previous effort, Justin Currie, the band’s lead singer and chief songwriter, says, “‘It’s a bit looser and a lot less anally retentive…Waking Hours was all so polished, whereas we did this one with Gil Norton in a traditionally more relaxed manner.’” MB

“Del Amitri’s progress up rock’s evolutionary ladder hasn’t been exactly meteoric.” MB Though Currie and guitarist Iain Harvie, the only constants in Del Amitri, “have been partners since 1981, Change Everything is only their third long-player.” MB “Their eponymous debut album, released in 1985 on the independent Big Star label, was placed well within the vanguard of Postcard’s jangle pop.” MB

It took four more years before 1989’s “slow-burning” MB Waking Hours gave the band a taste of commercial success, but then “they decided to shed their rhythm section. According to Iain: ‘the old drummer wasn’t particularly good, so he tended to get shoved sideways, and the guitarist was terrified of touring for years and wanted to stay at home. I think that’s one reason people say we lack charisma – we’re still looking for an image, and that only comes from people getting to know the band after a period of time.’” MB Indeed, “they have gone from being a wilfully idiosyncratic, obscure art band to a radio-friendly, retro-pop chart act, without ever being the tastemakers’ flavour of the month.” DS

Change Everything, the band’s latest release, stays the course” MR of Waking Hours and “although the songs here were not as good as any individual song from their past, the album as a whole was their best yet.” SS “Since it was recorded after almost two years on the road, it’s grittier.” MR As for the new band members – “guitarist David Cummings, 32, drummer Brian McDermott, 32, and keyboardist Andy Alston, 30” MR – they have paid off. “‘This record sounds more like a band,’ Currie says. ‘It was made very much as a live group.’” MR

“In the absence of a lifestyle or haircut of any radical significance, it has been assumed in some sections of the media that del Amitri are mainstream and old-fashioned.” MB “Although del Amitri have a lust for mandolins, banjos and the pedal steel guitar (‘not a hard instrument to play, just like scratching your head and rubbing your tummy,’ Jusin assures me), they have no truck with that infatuation for all things Celtic which is becoming so tiresome these days.” MB Justin says, “‘It’s all second-hand influences from The Faces and The Flying Burrito Brothers.’” MB “‘We’re definitely guilty of listening to a lot of old Seventies records and ripping them off,’ Currie cheerfully admits.” DS Still, “there is no hint of the rebellious, flamboyant or crusading qualities which underpin the philosophies of other Seventies retro acts, such as The Black Crowes or Lenny Kravitz. Even Karl Wallinger's World Party seems to have a more urgent agenda.” DS

“Nowadays, Currie’s lyrics evince a more cynical and world weary tone. ‘Maybe it’s from listening to too many Elvis Costello records, but I just find it easy to write bitter, twisted love songs.’” DS “‘It’s just hard for me to write outside the 'Oh, woe is me’ style. I’m a romantic with a strong cynical streak.’” MB “‘If you’re in love you’re feeling cosy and you’re cuddling your loved one, the last thing you want to do is go and write a song about how wonderful it is. When things go wrong, that’s when you want to write about it.’” DS

“With titles like Always the Last to Know and I Won’t Take the Blame, you can be certain there are a few insights and personal observations that have much in common with your own.” KN On the former song, Currie “wonders if ‘he’s treating you like I treated you’ or if ‘he’s cheating on you like I cheated on you.’” KN As he says of the “tale of a double-crossed lover,” BD “‘It’s your standard infidelity song. But I like the idea of starting off the song being the one that was hard done by and then ending up the song by reversing that.’” BD

As Soon As the Tide Comes In is “a song about a man watching the woman he loves marry somebody else.” KN The fact that it “recalls the Replacements’ ‘Nobody’ is no accident. Justin Currie freely acknowledges that he and the rest of the band listened to All Shook Down religiously before and during the time they spent in the studio. It was only natural that their own music changed and reflected all that was going on around them while still maintaining its own very distinctive personality.” KN

“The remorseful Be My Downfall and The First Rule of Love, which relates the end of a relationship before it’s even got off the ground and into bed, marks Currie out as a wordy, mature wordsmith.” JA However, Currie surprisingly says “‘Lyrics aren’t all that important to good songs. There aren’t many great lyricists – Morrissey, who uses words that aren’t acceptable in rock-n-roll, or John Lennon maybe – but you only get into the lyrics because you like the record…Without being wanky about it, it’s not the meaning that matters but how it fits with the tune.’” JA

In fact, Currie talks about trying to cut lyrics from songs. “‘There used to be loads more words in every song – just because it took us so long to write them: I’d throw all the lyrics I’d thought of in the last 6 months into one song. Now I get to the third verse and I’ve run out of ideas, so I just cancel it and do the chorus again. Which is usually a good idea: more than three verses is just indulgence.’” MM

Currie also voices his opinion on the tempo of the songs. “‘There’s too many slow songs on this album…It was quite difficult to sequence it actually, ‘cos there’s a lot of medium-paced songs…We wanted Just Like a Man…to be the first single, but A&M thought it would freak our former fans out.’” MM

Review Source(s):
  • JA John Aizlewood, Q Magazine, “Cheery – Del Amitri at the Edge of Nowhere: Sideburns, Whisky and Hits.” (7/92)
  • MB Max Bell, Vox Magazine, “Hangin’ with the Del Boys.” (5/92)
  • BD Bill DeMain, Song Talk Magazine, “Del Amitri’s Justin Currie – From Glasgow to Global.” (Vol. 3, Issue 2)
  • MM Making Music magazine, “Success the Long Way Round.” (8/92)
  • KN Kris Nicholson, The Music Paper, “Everything Changes for Del Amitri.” (10/92)
  • MR Michael Rubiner, Rolling Stone, “Stepping Out with Del Amitri.” (10/29/92)
  • SS Steven “Spaz” Schnee, All Music Guide
  • DS David Sinclair, Times of London, “Quality Goods from the Del Boys.” (5/30/92)

Related DMDB Link(s):

previous album: Working Hours (1989) Del Amitri’s DMDB page next album: Twisted (1995)

Just Like a Man (video)

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Last updated May 4, 2010.