34 years since they recorded ‘I Don’t Want A Lover’, then watched, gobsmacked, as it reached Number Eight in the charts, Texas, one of the UK’s most loved bands, have gone on to produce ten studio albums, selling over 40 million records worldwide. So let the fireworks begin as they today announce a special 2LP & 2CD compilation The Very Best Of 1989 – 2023 – out June 16th on [PIAS] Recordings, ahead of an appearance on the Pyramid Stage at this year’s Glastonbury Festival.
There’s the one with The Wu-Tang Clan. The five that were Top 10 singles from one album. The one with Alan Rickman in the video. The one that was an inspired Al Green cover. The two written with diverse titans of American music, Dallas Austin and Gregg Alexander. The one that was remixed by Giorgio Moroder. The une that helped give them their first French Number One album. The segued pair that, according to the woman at the front, makes their live audiences go “absolutely fuckin’ apeshit”. The one with the video directed by Peter Kay. The other one with Wu-Tang Clan. The one that gave them, straight out of the gate, a Top 10 single with their first ever release. The club banger with a killer Donna Summer sample. And the one that ended up the theme song to a top-rating American sitcom…
Texas – The Very Best Of 1989-2023 has all of the above, and more. 24 diamonds from a glittering career, including two brand new tracks ‘Keep On Talking’ & new single ‘After All’.
A nailed-on singalong, ‘After All’ is a song so stomping that the video, directed by Lewis Knaggs, features Sharleen deliver a stella performance, unleashing her inner Dave Grohl as she takes up drumming duties. Watch the video HERE.
Then there’s ‘Keep On Talking’, a foot-shuffling cover of the 1965 Northern Soul deep-cut Keep On Talking, written by Dan Penn and Spooner Oldham – and produced by Oldham in Muscle Shoals.
There’s more screen star power sprinkled across Texas’s back catalogue as represented in The Very Best Of 1989-2023. The video for ‘In Demand’ features Spiteri’s dear friend, the late, lamented actor Alan Rickman. As for the video for ‘Sleep’, the final single from 2005’s Red Book (and another Top 10), it was made by Peter Kay after the comic and Spiteri bonded at the Live 8 all-star concert in Edinburgh.
“We did it in the club that Phoenix Nights was shot in.” Sharleen explains. “And Peter scripted, directed, starred, edited, everything – he did everything on that video on his own. He was phenomenal. A friend for life.” And when Spiteri’s duet partner on that beautiful song, legendary (and legendarily selective) Blue Nile singer Paul Buchanan had opted not to appear in the video, Kay’s a pretty good stand-in, right?
Meanwhile, across all their albums, Texas were reliably killing it in mainland Europe. Jump On Board (2017) was a chart-topping triumph in France, its ascent aided by the snake-hipped funk of Let’s Work It Out, “which literally you couldn’t get off the radio in France”. But, again, what an afterlife. Now, when they perform that song live, complete with Spiteri doing the video’s “stupid dance” (her words, not ours), they go straight into ace Hi cut Mr Haze. That dancefloor classic is rocket-powered by deft deployment of a sample of Donna Summer’s Love’s Unkind..
And all those, of course, are just some of the highlights studded across this 24-track compilation.
Finally, then: as Sharleen Spiteri looks back over these tracks of her years, what’s the overall sensation? Satisfaction of a job well done? The best is yet to come?
“No’ bad for a hairdresser fae Glasgow!” she says, an old joke but still a good one (and a true one). “But I gotta be honest: I still feel like I’m really close to the beginning. And the energy and the vibe between us all – as a band I don’t think we’ve ever been happier, and I don’t think we’ve ever been tighter. And I don’t think we’ve ever been more definite about who we are.”
Who are they? They are Texas, and they make hits.