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Suede – The Sadness in You, The Sadness in Me Review

Of course, there was leftover material from Suede. How could there not be? The Sadness in You, the Sadness in Me, progresses the remarkable statement made on Autofiction with some bits and pieces which do not quite fit – but are far too good to rot away in the archives. Unbending and unwavering with a lighter swing and a sharper guitar piece, Brett Anderson and company stick to the tender and open themes found on their latest album and build up another song challenging the band and their listeners. In comes a dedication to a shared grievance – The Sadness in You, the Sadness in Me does as its title suggests it will – bring together heartbroken people under one umbrella. 

Those who found themselves moved by Autofiction will find more to love with The Sadness in You, the Sadness in Me – though not of the same near-perfect quality. These are bonus tracks, after all. Not quite a fit for album proper, though it does hold the same instrumental hooks and swings as the likes of What Am I Without You and It’s Always the Quiet Ones. Two essential pieces from the latest release – though broken up a bit by Anderson challenging himself with a vocal range not quite in his grasp any longer. Anderson does not harm the track by trying – it is admirable – but it does weaken those moments of defiant and impressionable chorus pieces. Advice at the core of this track is expected and rather plain, even if it is an obvious conclusion for the message. 

Delivering this is decently done and the likes of Mat Osman and Richard Oakes shine as they always do. Enhancements are made and it is great to hear a continuation of one of last year’s finest albums. Whether Suede begins dragging these bonus bits and pieces out on tour with them is yet to be seen. It can only be hoped for, as the likes of What Am I Without You were agonisingly absent. Should The Sadness in You, the Sadness in Me take its place, there may be riots. Or at the very least, disgruntled fans. It is a tad lacking in what it leaves behind and for much of The Sadness in You, The Sadness in Me, there is a sense of reliance on the lead title and little else. Fanciful writings which run a little close to empty considering the powerful and raw angle Anderson took on the album.  

Should this be the strongest of the bunch, or at least the most familiar for Autofiction Enhanced, it may be a string of amicable songs after all. The Sadness in You, the Sadness in Me is far from good-natured but it does have all the right parts – though not quite in the right spots. Suede is of a rare standard. Their reliable qualities as a band mean even their afterthoughts or pieces which struggled to make it over the line the first time around are still well worth a listen. It is no Personality Disorder, lacking the harsher edges of their single at the time. But if Suede were hoping it would fall into the violent disruption or the heavier tones of Black Ice, they were incorrect. The Sadness in You, The Sadness in Me, runs the risk of being a middle-of-the-road piece, and it is clear to see why it was left in the backlog for some time.  

Ewan Gleadow
Ewan Gleadow
Editor in Chief at Cult Following | News and culture journalist at Clapper, Daily Star, NewcastleWorld, Daily Mirror | Podcast host of (Don't) Listen to This | Disaster magnet

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