191. Eurythmics – ‘Love Is A Stranger’ (1982)

“Love is a stranger in an open car
To tempt you in and drive you far away”

Taken from the album Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)

Also released on Greatest Hits, Boxed and Ultimate Collection

UK #6, AUS #17, US #23

‘Love Is A Stranger’ is one of the best examples of electronic music revealing a warmth underneath that purists believe can only be expressed with real instruments. It has a relentless drum beat and dark tone but the heart and soul of ‘Love Is A Stranger’ is in Annie’s mournful, wary voice, seemingly having seen to much and felt more than anyone should have to feel.

It also has this creepy, stalkerish feel, and I love the tinge of crazy in her voice when she sings “And I want you, and I want you, and I want you so it’s an obsession”. As the synths whirl around her she slowly goes mad, getting more intense as the song goes along, becoming more panicky and paranoid. By the time she gets to line “you’re left like a zombie”, her voice has changed completely, half because of Annie herself and half due to vocal effects.

The music video was just as weird and unsettling as the song, featuring Annie in a variety of different personas with a sinister atmosphere running throughout. It was a perfect match of song and visuals. Inititally a commercially flop like every other Eurythmics single, after ‘Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This)’ made them international stars, ‘Love Is A Stranger’ was re-released to become the hit follow-up. It is now remembered as not just a Eurythmics classic, but a landmark of electronica, one of the essential early electro records.

Audio:

One Response to “191. Eurythmics – ‘Love Is A Stranger’ (1982)”

  1. QThomasBower Says:

    I so loved the lyrics to this song, I would just sit and write them out instead of taking notes in college! Looking back at the video recently, I was amazed how many looks Annie had in this video – how many looks she invented that would be repeated by every female alternative singer who followed…

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