Everything But The Girl is re-issuing four classic albums as a two CD case-bound book set on Edsel Records, comprising of the original albums, unreleased home demos, photos from Ben Watt’s and Tracey Thorn’s own collection and more. EBTG was formed in 1982 by Tracey Thorn and Ben Watt after the pair met by coincidence at Hull University in the autumn of 1981.
Merging their respective early non-rock influences from their early band careers, their first release was a stark acoustic cover of Cole Porter's 'Night And Day' (1982) on Cherry Red. Originally intended as a last-minute B-side to two originals, it unintentionally threw the pair into the burgeoning London jazz-pop scene. Returning to work in the relative isolation of Hull, each then released acclaimed minimalistic solo albums that topped the UK Indie Charts - Tracey's 'A Distant Shore' and Ben's 'North Marine Drive' before they pooled songs for the Everything But The Girl debut, 'Eden', recorded with producer Robin Millar in the summer of 1983, but not released due to contractual issues involved in their move to Blanco Y Negro/WEA until May 1984. It spawned a Top 40 hit ('Each And Every One') and went on to sell 500,000 copies, while Paul Weller unexpectedly invited them both to guest on a track on the debut album by The Style Council, 'Café Bleu' (1984).
The next three albums charted different paths. The breezy folk-jazz of 'Eden' was followed by the politicised electric guitar pop of 'Love Not Money' (1985), the orchestral ‘60s wall of sound of 'Baby, The Stars Shine Bright' (1986) and the more introspective machine-pop-soul of 'Idlewild' (1988). All three went gold in the UK, with 'Idlewild' also seeing a quick re-release after the band's Top 3 UK Top 40 success with a cover of Danny Whitten's 'I Don't Want To Talk About It' in the summer of 1988.