The Darling Buds may have echoed the prevailing trends of the British music scene, but they could never be faulted for mere mimicry or want of imagination.
What they lacked in the originality department they more than made up for with stellar musical execution and the undeniable talent of lead singer and songwriter Andrea Lewis.
Repeated listens to Erotica (released just prior to Madonna's LP of the same title) should convince the harshest cynic that the Darling Buds absorbed, rather than plagiarized, what they listened to.
You can hear strains of My Bloody Valentine's guitar rush and Swervedriver's scrawl and scream in "Please Yourself"; it's undeniably a fantastic song.
Also, not too many songwriters of the time were as bold or articulate as Lewis, as she is here.
"One Thing Leads to Another" (not a Fixx cover), "Isolation" (not a Joy Division cover), and "Long Day in the Universe" rival anything that the British charts had to offer at the time; heck, any of the ten songs here sound like great singles.
The DBs continued to expand themselves rhythmically and make further strides into sophisticated pop, managing to make a third successive album that's top-to-toe fantastic.