17 Songs, 47 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Blondie’s second album, Plastic Letters, is sandwiched between their self-titled retro-pop debut and their worldwide commercial breakthrough third album, Parallel Lines. It’s often overlooked as the middle child of the band’s opening trilogy. The hits were a remake of the 1963 Randy & The Rainbows hit “Denise” (performed as “Denis” to make it more gender-appropriate for singer Deborah Harry) and the excellent new wave–signifying “(I’m Always Touched by Your) Presence, Dear,” written by bassist Gary Valentine (who left the group for a solo career before the recording of the album). Tracks such as “Fan Mail,” “Bermuda Triangle Blues (Flight 45),” and d present a tough, tight pop-rock band. Modern versions of Plastic Letters include key bonus tracks like the early version of the eventual smash “Heart of Glass,” known here as “Once I Had a Love (The Disco Song),” the b-side “Poet’s Problem,” an outtake from the debut album (“Scenery”), and a live version of “Detroit 442.” 

EDITORS’ NOTES

Blondie’s second album, Plastic Letters, is sandwiched between their self-titled retro-pop debut and their worldwide commercial breakthrough third album, Parallel Lines. It’s often overlooked as the middle child of the band’s opening trilogy. The hits were a remake of the 1963 Randy & The Rainbows hit “Denise” (performed as “Denis” to make it more gender-appropriate for singer Deborah Harry) and the excellent new wave–signifying “(I’m Always Touched by Your) Presence, Dear,” written by bassist Gary Valentine (who left the group for a solo career before the recording of the album). Tracks such as “Fan Mail,” “Bermuda Triangle Blues (Flight 45),” and d present a tough, tight pop-rock band. Modern versions of Plastic Letters include key bonus tracks like the early version of the eventual smash “Heart of Glass,” known here as “Once I Had a Love (The Disco Song),” the b-side “Poet’s Problem,” an outtake from the debut album (“Scenery”), and a live version of “Detroit 442.” 

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