“Where Has Your Love Gone” is a lost classic from the compact but lustrous catalogue of V4Visions, a label that operated at the confluence of street soul and house music in early ’90s London. Written by 18-year-old singer Julie Stapleton and programmer-arranger/V4Visions co-founder Alex Palmer, the song marries the yearning ache of lovers rock reggae with the hypnotic and haunting style of deep house pioneered by Larry Heard. Three years after its 1991 release, “Where Has Your Love Gone” was covered by pop star Kylie Minogue, with the title slightly tweaked to “Where Has The Love Gone”. Its appearance on Minogue’s 1994 self-titled album earned Stapleton and Palmer gold discs for record sales.
“Where Has Your Love Gone” originally featured on the 1991 V4Visions compilation Things 2 Come and was also separately released that same year as the lead cut of a 3-track 12-inch single. Also reissued by Numero Group, the other tracks on that EP are the “New York Mix” of “Where Has Your Love Gone” (which adds more kick to the drum programming) and the gorgeous “Just Dreaming.” The latter offsets Stapleton’s creamy sweetness with a tart synth-vamp, layered a looped breakbeat and shimmying funk bassline. The loping midtempo groove recalls Soul II Soul, as does the positivity vibe of the lyric: “let’s work together as one / and show that something can be done.” The optimistic vibe is very 1990-991, paralleling similar sentiments coming out of house, rap, and indie-dance crossover artists of the era.
“All the Way (Guitar Mix),” the fourth track in this reissue batch, is a duet between Stapleton and Ashaye, a vocalist who appeared on many V4Visions releases and was part of the core team behind the label. Spacious, reverb-soaked production frames the two voices as they intertwine with each other and the spare instrumentation (acoustic guitar and electric piano, but no drums or bass). The resulting mood and sound ends up somewhere between Fleetwood Mac’s “Brown Eyes” and Aaliyah’s “One In A Million.”
- Julie Stapleton Where's Your Love Gone? (Remix)
- Julie Stapleton Where's Your Love Gone? (New York Mix)
- Julie Stapleton Just Dreaming
- Julie Stapleton All the Way