(function(h,o,t,j,a,r){ h.hj=h.hj||function(){(h.hj.q=h.hj.q||[]).push(arguments)}; h._hjSettings={hjid:104204,hjsv:5}; a=o.getElementsByTagName('head')[0]; r=o.createElement('script');r.async=1; r.src=t+h._hjSettings.hjid+j+h._hjSettings.hjsv; a.appendChild(r); })(window,document,'//static.hotjar.com/c/hotjar-','.js?sv=');
Join us

Features

‘Ghost In The Machine’: reDiscover The Police’s Spirited Fourth Album

Topping the charts in the UK and reaching No.3 in the US, The Police’s ‘Ghost In The Machine‘ included several of the band’s most enduring hit singles.

Published on

The Police Ghost In The Machine album cover web optimised 820

The Police’s multi-platinum-selling third album, Zenyatta Mondatta, stayed on the US Billboard 200 for almost three years and included ‘Don’t Stand So Close To Me’: not only the band’s third British No.1 hit, but also the UK’s biggest-selling single of 1980. A phenomenal success by anyone’s standards, the record set Sting, Andy Summers and Stewart Copeland on course for its follow-up, Ghost In The Machine, and the global superstardom they’d attain when their fifth LP, Synchronicity, was released in June 1983.

Behind the scenes, however, the creation of Zenyatta Mondatta had been fraught with difficulty as The Police and co-producer Nigel Gray felt pressure from their label, A&M, into completing the record in three weeks. Accordingly, things went right down to the wire, with the sessions finally wrapping at 4am on the very morning the band departed on their world tour to promote the LP.

By comparison, The Police had the relative luxury of six months to nail the songs for their fourth LP, Ghost In The Machine, released on 2 October 1981. With Genesis/The Human League producer Hugh Padgham replacing Gray behind the console, the record came together during sessions in Montreal’s Le Studio and at Sir George Martin’s plush AIR Studio complex on the Caribbean island of Montserrat.

Unlike the brittle, guitar-based Zenyatta Mondatta, however, Ghost In The Machine proffered a harder, denser sound with a far greater reliance on keyboards and brass textures, most of which were executed by the band’s primary songwriter, Sting. Songs such as ‘One World (Not Three)’ and the sturdy ‘Too Much Information’ were assembled around infectious horn riffs, while the piledriving ‘Demolition Man’ (later covered by Grace Jones) and the Andy Summers-penned ‘Omega Man’ ranked among the most aggressive songs in The Police’s canon.

Crucially, though, Ghost In The Machine also paraded a trio of the band’s most enduring singles. Built upon a looped synthesiser motif, the enigmatic ‘Invisible Sun’ (which featured hard-hitting lyrics relating to the Northern Irish Troubles) was a brave choice to trail the album, but the gamble paid off when it peaked at No.2 in the UK. The nervy, reggae-tinged ‘Spirits In The Material World’ also peaked just outside the Top 10 on both sides of the Atlantic, but the record’s smash hit was the joyous, Caribbean-flavoured ‘Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic’, which climbed to No.3 in North America and again topped the UK charts in October 1981.

Promoted by a gargantuan, 120-date world tour with support bands ranging from Joan Jett And The Blackhearts to a nascent U2, Ghost In The Machine was greeted by a welter of positive reviews and eventually outsold its illustrious predecessor, going triple-platinum in the US alone.

Every Move You Make: The Studio Recordings is out on 16 November. Scroll down to read the full tracklist and buy it here.

Listen-Buy

Outlandos d’Amour (1978)
‘Next to You’
‘So Lonely’
‘Roxanne’
‘Hole in My Life’
‘Peanuts’
‘Can’t Stand Losing You’
‘Truth Hits Everybody’
‘Born in the ’50s’
‘Be My Girl – Sally’
‘Masoko Tanga’

Reggatta de Blanc (1979)
‘Message in a Bottle’
‘Reggatta de Blanc’
‘It’s Alright for You’
‘Bring on the Night’
‘Deathwish’
‘Walking on the Moon’
‘On Any Other Day’
‘The Bed’s Too Big Without You’
‘Contact’
‘Does Everyone Stare’
‘No Time This Time’

Zenyatta Mondatta (1980)
‘Don’t Stand So Close to Me’
‘Driven to Tears’
‘When the World Is Running Down, You Make the Best of What’s Still Around’
‘Canary in a Coalmine’
‘Voices Inside My Head’
‘Bombs Away’
‘De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da’
‘Behind My Camel’
‘Man in a Suitcase’
‘Shadows in the Rain’
‘The Other Way of Stopping’

Ghost in the Machine (1981)
‘Spirits in the Material World’
‘Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic’
‘Invisible Sun’
‘Hungry for You (J’aurais toujours faim de toi)’
‘Demolition Man’
‘Too Much Information’
‘Rehumanize Yourself’
‘One World (Not Three)’
‘Ωmegaman’

Synchronicity (1983)
‘Synchronicity I’
‘Walking in Your Footsteps’
‘O My God’
‘Mother’
‘Miss Gradenko’
‘Synchronicity II’
‘Every Breath You Take’
‘King of Pain’
‘Wrapped Around Your Finger’
‘Tea in the Sahara’

Bonus Disc: Flexible Strategies (2018)
‘Dead End Job’ (1978)
‘Landlord’ (1979)
‘Visions Of The Night’ (1979)
‘Friends’ (1980)
‘A Sermon’ (1980)
‘Shambelle’ (1981)
‘Flexible Strategies’ (1981)
‘Low Life’ (1981)
‘Murder By Numbers’ (1983)
‘Truth Hits Everybody’ (Remix) (1983)
‘Someone To Talk To’ (1983)
‘Once Upon A Daydream’ (1983)

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Anthon

    April 25, 2016 at 6:38 pm

    Nice 🙂
    Any chance to buy the album as digital high res.?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Don't Miss