Nick Laird-Clowes's penchant for writing odes to tragic icons like Nick Drake and Edie Sedgwick paid off with the success of 1985's "Life in a Northern Town," a sleeper hit that brought the group's commercially stillborn debut album back to life. Dedicated to Drake, the lead track sets the tone for the British trio's dreamy set of sensitive baroque-pop excursions. On tracks like the pastoral "One Dream," Kate St. John's arsenal of classical instruments adds color to Laird-Clowes's folk-rock strummings, while Gilbert Gabriel's keyboards give an '80s sheen to the '60s sentiments of "Love Parade." Dream Academy even lured Pink Floyd's David Gilmour into the production booth, ensuring the group its own little niche in art-rock history. --Bill Forman
1985 debut on Warner Brothers by this artsy English triofeaturing Kate St. John. Out of print in the U.S., the top20 album was co-produced by the band's Nick Laird-Clowes andPink Floyd's David Gilmour and features the cult hit 'LifeIn A Northern Town'. 10 tracks total.