The Sensual World

b/w Walk Straight Down The Middle

The Sensual World (UK) front


The Sensual World (UK) rear


Country: UK
Label/Number: EMI EM 102
Release date: September 18, 1989
Chronology: Kate's 20th UK single; the 1st of 3 from The Sensual World LP/CD.
Highest chart position: 12
Cover photo by John Carder Bush
The Sensual World Lyrics
What it's about: Molly Bloom steps out of the black and white, two dimensional pages of James Joyce's Ulysses into the real world, and is immediately struck by the sensuality of it all.
Running time: 3:57
Walk Straight Down The Middle Lyrics
What it's about: Trying to remain balanced and centered in our lives, instead of bouncing from one extreme to the other.
Running time: 3:48
The Sensual World marked Kate's return from her second 3 year hiatus. Not counting collaborative efforts (and a couple songs written specifically for movie soundtracks), this was her first UK release in 35 months!
The Sensual World entered the UK chart in the second week of its release and immediately peaked at #12, on September 30, 1989.  It held that position for one week, and spent a total of five weeks on the chart.
It was originally supposed to be Molly Bloom's speech (from the end of Ulysses) set to music, but Kate could not secure the rights from the Joyce estate, so she altered it. (Here is an excerpt from the original text, reproduced to show the source of Kate's inspiration.)
Walk Straight Down The Middle shows up on the This Woman's Work box set as a non-LP track, and true enough, it doesn't appear on any of The Sensual World LPs. It was, however, a "bonus track" on the CD, so I've excluded it from my Non-LP/CD track listing.
One of the elements EMI used to promote the single in the UK was a very nice diecut counter stand (shown here).

Go to: 7" Single Index 7" Pictorial Chronology