The Soul Cages

Universal Music A/S
Release date
2 Nov 1998
Running length
9 tracks
Running time


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    Track     Duration Listeners
1 Island Of Souls 6:43 25,874
2 All This Time 5:21 151,341
3 Mad About You 3:53 166,770
4 Jeremiah Blues (Part 1) 4:54 17,801
5 Why Should I Cry For You? 4:50 53,490
6 Saint Agnes And The Burning Train 2:43 29,740
7 The Wild Wild Sea 6:41 22,003
8 The Soul Cages 5:51 37,772
9 When The Angels Fall 7:49 24,937

About this album

The Soul Cages is the third studio album released by Sting. Released in 1991, it became his second #1 album in the United Kingdom. While a relatively little-known album to casual fans, with a similar lack of popularity to 1996’s Mercury Falling, this very personal and introspective album spawned four singles, “All This Time”, “Why Should I Cry For You”, “Mad About You”, and “The Soul Cages”. The latter won the 1992 Grammy Award for Best Rock Song.

The Soul Cages is a concept album focused on the death of Sting’s father. At the time, Sting had developed a writer’s block shortly after his father’s death; the episode lasted several years, until Sting was able to overcome his affliction by dealing with the death of his father through music. The first song written for The Soul Cages was “Why Should I Cry for You”, and Sting has stated the rest of the album flowed quite easily after that first hurdle was overcome. Most of the songs have motifs related to sailing or the seas (Sting’s father, according to Sting’s autobiography, Broken Music, had always regretted not becoming a sailor.) There are also references to Newcastle, the part of England where Sting grew up.

Album opener “Island of Souls” tells the story of Billy, the first son in a family line of riveters. As he watches the ships his father create set sail, Billy dreams of taking his father along with him to escape by sea; his dreams become more prevalent as his father is injured and given three weeks to live.

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  • doowniwevets

    Gets my vote for greatest album of all time.

    28 Dec 2012 Reply
  • Supertransonic

    This is the one Sting album where I hear music and emotion instead of ego. Best work of his career, IMO. [2]

    8 Nov 2011 Reply
  • mixplusik

    This is my favourite too. I could listen to "Why Should I Cry for You?" alone for hours on repeat.

    15 Jul 2011 Reply
  • zooroopa

    my favourite C:

    7 Jan 2011 Reply
  • sataraid1

    This is the one Sting album where I hear music and emotion instead of ego. Best work of his career, IMO.

    19 Oct 2010 Reply
  • itspaola

    saint agnes and the burning train is so beautiful.

    2 Jun 2010 Reply
  • shingouz

    My favorite Sting album, his more honest, heartfelt and emotional.

    7 Mar 2009 Reply
  • djgizmoe

    I'd say his best.

    20 Feb 2009 Reply
  • DoubtsonDrums

    Fantastic album. Maybe even his best. A moving story of home and family. Peace

    24 Nov 2008 Reply
  • mythogenesis

    This is the album that made me a Sting fangirl.

    29 Sep 2008 Reply
  • A_Friend_

    If I remember right, (it's been a long time) but I think he wrote this album after he lost his parents.

    6 Jun 2008 Reply
  • A_Friend_

    absolutely agree on Mad About You.... love all his old songs~

    1 Jun 2008 Reply
  • haengsle

    saw sting live during the tour for this album, fantastic! haven't seen him live since, no point, it would only be a disapointment. i like a lot of the things he's released since, but this is his highlight!

    10 May 2008 Reply
  • KrazyIan

    Great album. Mad About You has to be one of the most underrated Sting songs ever.

    7 May 2008 Reply

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