REVIEW: ‘Into The Skyline’ by Cathy Dennis (CD, 1992)


Today’s POP RESCUE is the 1992 second album from hit pop writer, musician, and producer, Cathy DennisInto The Skyline.

The album comes in a luxuriant design – and one that almost puts her into Enya territory. Thankfully, it’s not Enya.

It’s worth noting, that renowned producer and remixer Shep Pettibone has writing credits on 6 of the 12 tracks, and a co-producer credit for the entire album. He’d worked with artists like Madonna, Debbie Gibson, Paula Abdul and George Michael, so in theory, this album was going to do well.

However, it’s a harder album to follow than its 1991 predecessor Move To This. The songs are less catchy and ‘pop’, and lyrically much more mature.

Singles You Lied To MeIrresistible, Falling, Moments Of Love (USA), and Why all feature here.

You Lied To Me starts out musically sounding reminiscent of Shep’s co-written hit Vogue with Madonna, including a spoken section, but whilst it is catchy and unmistakably Cathy Dennis, it’s certainly no Vogue.

Cathy’s regular collaborative partner D Mob (C’Mon And Get My Love, That’s The Way Of The World), joins her on second track Why. This is not the same version that I remember becoming the single, but it’s still a catchy song, if slightly mellower here. When released as the final single from the album, there had been almost a year gap. It was the most successful single of the album, and was remixed by PM Dawn.

The singles continue with the gentle Falling, which includes the album title in its lyrics. Shep resumes co-writer and co-production here, and the track even uses some nice finger-snaps that again gently remind me of his big hit.

Moments Of Love introduces Anne Dudley – renowned orchestral arranger, who here commands a rich underlying string section, on what feels like a bit of a 60’s/70’s song that could feasibly be from a film soundtrack, or comfortably sitting in Cilla Black’s discography.

The more up-beat Being With You is one of the three tracks written entirely by Cathy, complete with some lovely drums, and what sounds like a synth flute. Similarly For Your Love is a nice little track, but it definitely belongs here on the album, and not as a single.

Irresistible is a welcome follow-up, and is back to up-beat, and is a great example of Cathy Dennis pop at its best.

The pop continues with the catchy and somewhat moralistic We’ve Got To Fight, a song which vocally I can imagine her (at this time) future focus, S Club 7 recording.

Change Will Come is a nice gentle album track, and the tempo mellows further with Our True Emotions, which reminds me of a late night jazz version of her hit Too Many Walls from the previous album.

The tempo goes back up again, with Everybody Get Up which gives a nod back to Cathy’s dance back catalogue. This track sounds like it would have sat perfectly in her debut album, but it’s a welcome addition here – giving a nice reassuring connection to her earlier sound amongst the more mature ballads.

The album ends with You Lied To Me (Sprayed With Shep’s Attitude Mix), which is admittedly a catchy alternative mix to the opening track, although i’m not sure i can spot the sprayed-on attitude that the title promises.

Listening to this album now, I’m able to hear her writing style that went on to provide Dannii and S Club 7 with a number of hit singles and album tracks.

Where is Cathy Dennis now?

Cathy Dennis went on to record another album, and cover Waterloo Sunset. She then turned away from performing, and has concentrated on writing and production ever since – creating huge hits for the likes of S Club 7, Kylie Minogue, Britney Spears, Dannii Minogue, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, Will Young, and Katy Perry, plus many more. She has also appeared a few times on TV, notably in the S Club TV series, and Beverly Hills 90210

In 2006, she won the UK industry’s Woman Of The Year Award. She has also won several Ivor Novello, and Grammy awards. She was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Music by her native University of East Anglia, in Norwich.

  • POP RESCUE 2014 RATING:  4 / 5
  • 1992 UK CHART POSITION: #8
  • POP RESCUE COST: £2.73 from an eBay seller.

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