“Our Love is On the Faultline”
Written by Reece Kirk
Radio & Records
#1 (1 week)
June 3, 1983
#1 (1 week)
June 11, 1983
Can a woman who had 34 top ten hits actually be underrated as an artist?
We tend to look at big superstar acts with a bit of side eye. Surely someone that radio friendly can’t be recording sophisticated material. They don’t even write their own songs!
Crystal Gayle is a crossover country artist that peaked during the era least respected by country music critics and historians, and her path to stardom was paved by an older sister who’d be in the Hall of Fame before this decade was through. She doesn’t fit the typical profile of an acclaimed artist at all.
And yet, “Our Love is On the Faultline” followed “Til I Gain Control Again” to No. 1, her second in a string of four chart topping hits that are as complex and intelligent as what Rosanne Cash and Emmylou Harris got on the radio back in the day.
The couplet that gives the song its title is brilliantly constructed, and its impact his heightened by Gayle’s delivery of it, which is equal parts fear for the future and contempt for the man whose presence is still present:
Baby, our love is on the fault lineAnd you’re sayin’ that the fault’s mine
Her voice shakes and quakes as she builds to the bridge, where the disaster she’s been sensing is finally revealed:
I feel it in my bones, I see it in your eyesComin’ up behind, here it comes Hold on tight
It’s such a cool and interesting record. Gayle may be best remembered for her countrypolitan crossover hits, but it’s this eighties run that is most worthy of rediscovery.
“Our Love is On the Faultline” gets an A.