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Terry Draper / Jacqueline Kroft — Social Studies - Atlantic Crossing - The Lost 80s Tapes
(Terry Tunes MVDA 15394, 1984/2024, DL / CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2024-06-17

Social Studies - Atlantic Crossing - The Lost 80s Tapes Cover art

Terry Draper is best known for his time in Klaatu and their five studio albums; Klaatu called it a day in the early 80s, and Draper and the other members were off to other musical endeavors. During the 80s. Draper teamed up with British singer Jacqueline Kroft in a group they called Social Studies, writing and performing together, but their collaboration never produced a recording, at least at the time. Now, 40 years on, eleven tracks have surfaced, an album that would have been titled Atlantic Crossing had it been released in its prime. It doesn’t take more than a split second onto the opening track, “Love Is a Miracle,” to recognize this is hard-edged New Wave pop of the highest order; Kroft has a great and expressive pop voice and delivery, perfect for the time period — I am often reminded of Missing Persons’ Dale Bozzio (without the squeak) or Pretenders’ Chrissie Hynde, and the band clearly had that synth-pop groove going, with the electronic gated drums, soaring synths and clever hooks. Very little of what’s here sounds anything like Klaatu, though perhaps the melodic sensibilities of that band can be heard in tracks like “More,” where presumably Draper is singing without Kroft, but for the most part the sounds here are more edgy and hard rocking, you could almost imagine yourself kicked back on the sofa watching any of these performances on the early days of MTV. One might notice that the tracks vary production-wise from one cut to the next, leading to suspect these were the product of different sessions over a period of time. There are a lot of fine songs here, among them “One Way Street,” “Untamed Woman,” “Are You Home,” and “Wild Winds.” It is said that  these eleven tracks are available on DVD also, though I haven’t seen any evidence,

Filed under: Archives, 2024 releases, 1984 recordings

Related artist(s): Terry Draper

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