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44 | Top 100
Unfinished Sympathy
Massive Attack
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Mention “Unfinished Sympathy” to anyone who has ever visited a nightclub and the chances are their eyes will immediately mist over. More than a decade after its release it remains one of the most moving pieces of dance music ever, able to soften hearts and excite minds just as keenly as a ballad by Bacharach or a melody by 
Massive Attack
Song facts
Composer Robert del Naja/Grantley Marshall/Shara Nelson/J. Sharp/Andrew Vowles
Genre Soul
Album Blue Lines
Year of Release 1991
UK Chart Position   13
McCartney. Rising from the ashes of Bristol collective The Wild Bunch, Massive Attack invented what we now know as trip-hop (although they hate the term) and launched the careers of Tricky and Shara Nelson. “Unfinished Sympathy” starts with a simple, footstep-like beat reminiscent of the Pet Shop Boys’ “West End Girls” but then bursts into life with a Spector-esque wall of strings and percussion. Shara Nelson’s wonderful rich vocals rise above the simple ascending/descending chord structure and make it clear that while this may be electronic music, it has just as much soul as anything to have ever come out of Detroit.

Massive Attack Interview
Listen to Massive Attack
Massive Attack talk about the heritage of the Bristol Music scene.


 

Other versions
Listen to Tina Turner
 Listen to Tina Turner's version of Unfinished Sympathy.

A timeless, emotive classic.


Mat Pringle

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