Total Pageviews

Monday, December 19, 2011

James - Wah Wah


Released : October 1 , 1994
Recorded : 1993
Genre : Alternative
Label : Mercury Records
Producer : Brian Eno, Markus Dravs

As Brian Eno's sometimes all too precious liner notes explain, when he and James worked together first in rehearsals and then in full recording sessions on Laid, a conscious decision was made to work on a variety of improvisations just to see what would happen. Wah Wah is the result, one of the more uncommercial albums any band of its stature and its accompanying major label has had a hand in releasing. Those expecting 60-minute maelstroms of free noise or recitations of obscenities or the like are in the wrong place, but definitely compared to the beautifully structured and precisely produced Laid, Wah Wah is much more a series of explorations in sound, sometimes quite fascinating ones. The general focus of Laid towards an evocative, restrained attractiveness and moody melancholy holds here as well, more immediate numbers with full lyrics from Booth sung in his fine voice mixed with more open-ended instrumental or wordless vocal jams. More than a few songs could have easily fit on Laid without a worry, such as the slow building "Pressure's On," easily a cousin to Laid's album-starter "Out to Get You," and the solid, techno-tinged trip "Honest Joe." Meanwhile, "Tomorrow," in re-recorded and even more warmly epic form, later became the excellent lead track on Whiplash. One tune, "Say Say Something," shares title and inspiration with the similarly named Laid song but takes a much different direction, with what sounds like Indian violin contributing to a slow-paced, serene wash of sound. Some songs are by default much more fragmentary than others, lyrics just dreamed up of the top of Booth's head, the rest of the band working around a rhythm loop or quietly rolling rhythm. Overall Wah Wah makes for a good listen both as a companion piece to Laid and on its own understated merits.

Tracks

1. Hammer Strings
2. Pressure's On
3. Jam J
4. Frequency Dip
5. Lay The Law Down
6. Burn The Cat
7. Maria
8. Low Clouds
9. Building A Fire
10.Gospel Oak
11.DVV
12.Say Say Something
13.Rhythmic Dreams
14.Dead Man
15.Rain Whistling
16.Basic Brian
17.Low Clouds
18.Bottom Of The Well
19.Honest Joe
20.Arabic Agony
21.Tomorrow
22.Laughter
23.Sayonara


download

James - Strip-Mine

Released : September 1988
Recorded : Rockfield Studios, Monmouth (early 1987)
Length : 35:32
Label : Blanco y Negro/Sire
Producer : Hugh Jones

The second full-length by Manchester quartet James found them still struggling for their own identity as the overall sound of Strip-Mine continued to be deeply influenced by the Smiths. Songs like the jangling "What For" and the upbeat stomp of "Are You Ready" have the same blend of breezy melody and lyrical discontent as Morrissey and company. There's more than enough worth listening to on Strip-Mine as, along with the aforementioned, tracks like the horn-driven "Charlie Dance"; the spry, folk-pop of "Fairground"; and the perky "Ya Ho" are catchy, if not exactly memorable. Everything has a crisp, clean feel, without being distant, thanks to the hand of noted producer Hugh Jones and, although not essential listening, Strip-Mine is of interest to fans of late '80s British alternative rock.

Tracks

1. What For
2. Charlie Dance
3. Fairground
4. Are You Ready
5. Medieval
6. Not There
7. Ya Ho
8. Riders
9. Vulture
10.Stripmining
11.Refrain


download

James - Jimone EP

Released : November 1983
Recorded : August 1983, Strawberry Studios, Stockport
Genre : Folk
Length : 6:29
Label : Factory
Producer : Chris Nagle

Jimone was the first EP by Mancunian band James, released in November 1983 by Factory Records. It contained three tracks that also later appeared on the band's Village Fire EP. According to the band's biography Folklore by Stuart Maconie, the band were fearful of tarnishing their best songs in the studio, so instead opted to record the three songs they felt were their worst.
The track "What's The World" has been covered by The Smiths (live recording on "I Started Something I Couldn't Finish"). It has remained popular among die-hard James fans to the present day and was still occasionally being featured in setlists as late as 1998. [1].
"Folklore" lent its name to Stuart Maconie's biography of the band in 2000, while "Fire So Close" was later radically reworked under the title of "Why So Close" on the band's debut 1986 album Stutter.

Tracks

1. Folklore
2. What's The World
3. Fire So Close


download

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Information Society - Repitition

Released : 1989
Genre : Synthpop, Electronica
Label : Tommy Boy Records
Producer : Fred Maher

"Repetition" is a 1989 ballad by Information Society. The song peaked at #76 in the Billboard Hot 100.
The music video, shot in black and white, shows the band between building ruins and old things, that complete the sad line of the lyrics.

Tracks

1. Repetition
2. Something in the Air (Extended Club Edit)
3. Something in the Air (Dub)


download

Information Society – Running 12"

Released : 1986
Genre : Techno, Synthpop, Freestyle
Label : Wide Angle Records
Producer : Paul Robb

Running is a single by the band InSoc (Information Society) originally released on the Creatures Of Influence album in 1985. The single for Running was distributed to club DJs, and became a favorite all over clubs, particularly in the Latin clubs of New York City. The single was later remixed by Tommy Boy Records and the remix single was released and became even more of a club hit, eventually reaching #2 on the Dance/Club Airplay charts and becoming an enduring classic of the Freestyle genre. Tommy Boy Records signed Information Society in 1986 and their self-titled album soon followed, featuring a mix of the single. In 1988 Information Society's self titled album was released and went platinum.
Unlike other singles in the catalogue, "Running" does not feature Kurt Harland on lead vocals, as the song was written and recorded by short-lived band member Murat Konar, who left the band in 1985 and would later be an integral part of the development of both SoundEdit (a Mac hosted sound editing application) and Adobe Flash applications. For a very long period of time, the band would not perform "Running" live, requesting not to be asked to play it and generally refusing all questions pertaining to their dislike of the song. It is generally believed this is due to the song being very difficult to play live, and because the song was written at a particularly fractious period in the band's life.
At a recent Information Society concert, Konar was seen on stage singing this song with the rest of the band.
Running also appears on the UK Streetsounds compilation album Electro 13.

Tracks

1. Vocal Remix
2. Percappella
3. "The Nest" Remix
4. Instrumental


download

Information Society – Insoc E.P.

Released : 1983
Recorded : March 1983
Genre : Synthpop, New Wave
Label : Information Records

The InSoc EP (also called The Information Society) is an EP by synthpop band Information Society. It was their first record.

Tracks

1. Bacchanale
2. Fall In Line
3. Growing Up With Shiva
4. Get Up (Away From That Thing)
5. Can You Live As Fast As Me?


download

Information Society – Information Society

Released : June 21, 1988
Recorded : Recorded at Platinum Island, New York, and Nicollet Studios, Minneapolis.
Genre : Freestyle, Synthpop, New Wave
Length : 43:42
Label : Tommy Boy / Reprise/Warner Bros. Records
Producer : Fred Maher, Paul Robb

An infectious update of the classic synth-pop most famous earlier in the decade, Information Society's self-titled debut sounds most similar to British groups like ABC and Pet Shop Boys, though hits like "What's on Your Mind," "Walking Away," and the cover of "Lay All Your Love on Me" manage to inject the affair with elements of industrial dance and hip-hop. All in all, it's a much better album than expected from the group many dismissed as mere one-hit wonders.

Tracks

1. What's On Your Mind (Pure Energy)
2. Tomorrow
3. Lay All Your Love On Me
4. Repetition
5. Walking Away
6. Over The Sea
7. Attitude
8. Something In The Air
9. Running
10.Make It Funky


download

Information Society - What's On Your Mind

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

The Call - Reconciled

Released : 1986
Recorded at the Power Station, NYC, '85. Mastered at Sterling Sound, NYC
Genre : Alternative Rock, New Wave
Label : Elektra
Producer : The Call

Though none of the singles from The Call's Reconciled made a dent on the pop charts, the anthemic march "I Still Believe" and the galloping "Everywhere I Go" (with backup vocals by Jim Kerr and Peter Gabriel) both received significant AOR and college radio airplay. It significantly raised the profile of the quartet and their earnest, U2-like brand of rock. It is easy to apply spiritual overtones to the socially conscious lyrics, but the words are malleable enough to be mainstream and only on occasion become heavy handed ("Blood Red (America)"). Robbie Robertson plays guitar on the thundering stomp "The Morning" and the song itself has the same vibe as the band's later hit "Let the Day Begin." Some of the keyboards sound a bit dated, but, overall, Reconciled is enjoyable and established the band as one of the better purveyors of '80s "big music."

Tracks

1. Everywhere I Go
2. I Still Believe (Great Design)
3. Blood Red (America)
4. The Morning
5. Oklahoma
6. With Or Without Reason
7. Sanctuary
8. Tore The Old Place Down
9. Even Now


download

The Call - Modern Romans

Released : 1983
Recorded at Indigo Studio, July-August, 1982
Genre : Alternative Rock, New Wave
Label : Mercury
Producer : The Call, Michael Been


I don't think a lot really needs to be said about The Call. They were a band on the brink that never seemed to get there. Which is unfortunate because they made some of the most passionate music of the 80s and early 90s. It's a crime that their first three albums are long out of print and have never appeared on cd. 'Modern Romans' is their second album and includes 'The Walls Came Down' which was a modest hit on college radio (was it called that yet?).

Tracks

1. The Walls Came Down
2. Turn A Blind Eye
3. Time Of Your Life
4. Modern Romans
5. Back From The Front
6. Destination
7. Violent Times
8. Face To Face
9. All About You


download

The Call, 10,000 Maniacs, X - Elektra Caravan '87

Released : 1987
Genre : Alternative Rock, New Wave, Punk Rock
Format : Vinyl, 7", Promo
Label : Elektra

Tracks

1. What's The Matter Here - 10,000 Maniacs
2. See How We Are - X
3. In The River - The Call


download

The Call - Everywhere I Go

Circle Jerks - Wild In The Streets

Released : 1982
Recorded : 1982, A & M Studio D Hollywood, California, U.S.
Genre : Hardcore punk
Length : 25:37
Producer : David Anderle, Gary Hirstius

Relentless onslaught of awesome punk rock. Lyrics that you'll have stuck in your head for days, making people think you're a raving lunatic. Consider, if you will, what people think when they overhear you singing wild in the streets downtown, or for that matter, any of these songs.

Tracks

1. Wild in the Streets
2. Leave Me Alone
3. Stars and Stripes
4. 86'd (Good as Gone)
5. Meet the Press
6. Trapped
7. Murder the Disturbed
8. Letter Bomb
9. Question Authority
10.Defamation Innuendo
11.Moral Majority
12.Forced Labor
13.Political Stu
14.Just Like Me / Put a Little Love in Your Heart


download

Circle Jerks - Group Sex

Released : 1980
Recorded : 1980, Byrdcliffe Studios, Culver City, California, USA
Genre : Hardcore punk
Length : 15:40
Label : Frontier
Producer : Circle Jerks, Cary Markoff

14 tracks clocking in at just under 16 minutes. How is this not an EP? Anyway, this is some fine, fine hardcore, check this one out for sure if you're a fan.

Tracks

1. Deny Everything
2. I Just Want Some Skank
3. Beverly Hills
4. Operation
5. Back Against the Wall
6. Wasted
7. Behind the Door
8. World Up My Ass
9. Paid Vacation
10.Don't Care
11.Live Fast Die Young
12.What's Your Problem
13.Group Sex
14.Red Tape


download

Circle Jerks - Gig

Released :1992
Recorded : 1985
Genre : Hardcore punk
Length : 39:23
Label : Combat
Producer : Paul du Gré

The Circle Jerks burst onto the explosive early-'80s L.A. punk scene with vocalist Keith Morris fresh from a short-lived stint in the legendary Black Flag, who were notorious for their raucous, riot-police-infested live shows. The Circle Jerks earned their credibility and reputation in much the same way; with energy-packed, near-riot-status live performances. While Gig was recorded about a dozen years after their inception, the Circle Jerks live shows still proved to be edgy and exciting, although a little less riot-police prone than their early days. Through a handful of shows in Southern California and Mexico, they manage to document their ear-splitting, sarcasm-laced legacy with sustained energy and a tightly coiled attack. Guitarist Greg Hetson, now serving in the still surviving Bad Religion, plays with the speed of his early days and the skill that results from years spent honing his craft. Keith Morris' sandpaper yowl and sarcastic wit survived their hard-lived years as well, with his legendary storytelling and midsong improvisations setting the Circle Jerks apart from the tough-guy mentality that often pervades the punk scene. Rhythm section Keith Clark and Zander Schloss provide a thundering backdrop for some of the heaviest and most scathing punk rock to come out of the '80s. Punk purists might cringe at the slightly metal influence that they adopted in the mid-'80s, but these years also contributed to the development of their sonically brutal live spectacle, and all the bases are thoroughly covered on Gig. Early favorites like "High Price on Our Heads" and "When the Shit Hits the Fan" embrace the incendiary past and offer listeners the chance to hear them the way they were meant to be: live, loud, and thoroughly obnoxious. Many songs from their mid- to late-'80s heyday make the live cut as well. The ironic "I Don't" and mainstream media critical "Casualty Vampires" take on even more visceral energy than their studio-recorded versions. This recording roars to a close on an old-school note with the anthemic "Wild in the Streets" and the last-second touch of Morris breaking up a fight between some overzealous fans with his razor-sharp tongue. Gig proves yet again that punk rock is meant to be experienced live, and if you missed the Jerks in their heyday, this is the next best thing.

Tracks

1. Beat Me Senseless
2. High Price on Our Heads
3. Letter Bomb
4. In Your Eyes
5. Making the Bombs
6. All Wound Up
7. Coup d'Etat
8. Mrs. Jones
9. Back Against the Wall
10.Casualty Vampires
11.I Don't
12.Making Time
13.Junk Mail
14.I, I & I
15.World Up My Ass
16.I Just Want Some Skank
17.Beverly Hills
18.The Crowd
19.When the Shit Hits the Fan
20.Deny Everything
21.Wonderful
22.Wild in the Streets


download

Circle Jerks - Wild In the Streets

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Siouxsie And The Banshees - The Scream

Released : 13 November 1978
Recorded : 1978
Genre : Post-Punk
Length : 39:04
Label : Polydor, Geffen
Producer : Steve Lillywhite

After building up an intense live reputation and a rabid fan base, Siouxsie and the Banshees almost had to debut with a stunner -- which they did, "Hong Kong Garden" taking care of things on the singles front and The Scream on the full-length. Matched with a downright creepy cover and a fair enough early producing effort from Steve Lillywhite -- well before he found gated drum sounds -- it's a fine balance of the early band's talents. Siouxsie Sioux herself shows the distinct, commanding voice and lyrical meditations on fractured lives and situations that would win her well-deserved attention over the years. Compared to the unfocused general subject matter of most of the band's peers, songs like "Jigsaw Feeling," "Suburban Relapse," and especially the barbed contempt of "Mirage" are perfect miniature portraits. John McKay's metallic (but not metal) guitar parts, riffs that never quite resolve into conventional melodies, and the throbbing Steven Severin/Kenny Morris rhythm section distill the Velvet Underground's early propulsion into a crisper punch with more than a hint of glam's tribal rumble. The sheer variety on the album alone is impressive -- "Overground" and its slow-rising build, carefully emphasizing space in between McKay's notes as much as the notes themselves, the death-march Teutonic stomp of "Metal Postcard," the sudden near-sunniness of the music (down to the handclaps!) toward the end of "Carcass." The cover of "Helter Skelter" makes for an unexpected nod to the past -- if it's not as completely overdriven as the original, Siouxsie puts her own definite stamp on it and its sudden conclusion is a great moment of drama. It's the concluding "Switch" that fully demonstrates just how solid the band was then, with McKay's saxophone adding just enough of a droning wild card to the multi-part theatricality of the piece, Siouxsie in particularly fine voice on top of it all.

Tracks

1. Pure
2. Jigsaw Feeling
3. Overground
4. Carcass
5. Helter Skelter
6. Mirage
7. Metal Postcard (Mittageisen)
8. Nicotine Stain
9. Suburban Relapse
10. Switch


download

Siouxsie And The Banshees - Juju

Released : 6 June 1981
Recorded : 1981
Genre : Post-Punk, Gothic Rock
Length : 41:06
Label : Polydor
Producer : Nigel Gray, Siouxsie & the Banshees

One of the band's masterworks, Juju sees Siouxsie and the Banshees operating in a squalid wall of sound dominated by tribal drums, swirling and piercing guitars, and Siouxsie Sioux's fractured art-attack vocals. If not for John McGeoch's marvelous high-pitched guitars, here as reminiscent of Joy Division as his own work in Magazine, the album would rank as the band's most gothic release. Siouxsie and company took things to an entirely new level of darkness on Juju, with the singer taking delight in sinister wordplay on the disturbing "Head Cut," creeping out listeners in the somewhat tongue-in-cheek "Halloween," and inspiring her bandmates to push their rhythmic witches brew to poisonous levels of toxicity. Album opener "Spellbound," one of the band's classics, ranks among their finest moments and bristles with storming energy. Siouxsie's mysterious voice emerges from dense guitar picking, Budgie lays into his drums as if calling soldiers to war, and things get more tense from there. "Into the Light" is perhaps the only track where a listener gets a breath of oxygen, as the remainder of the album screams claustrophobia, whether by creepy carnival waterfalls of guitar notes or Siouxsie's unsettling lyrics. "Arabian Nights" at least offers a gorgeously melodic chorus, but after that the band performs a symphony of bizarre wailings and freaky imagery. As ominous as the cacophony is on its own, close attention to Siouxsie's nearly subliminal chants paints a scarier picture. A passage such as "I saw you...a huge smiling central face with eyes and lips cut out but smiling and eating lots of other lips" doesn't exactly brighten one's day. Siouxsie is full of such quips throughout the album's running time, but her delivery packs as much punk as her message. Her attack-the-world dynamic range on "Voodoo Dolly" predates and out-weirds Björk's similar styling years later. McGeoch, Budgie, and bassist Steven Severin deserve just as much credit for crafting an original sound that would inspire a diverse group of future bands from Ministry to Placebo. All the while, producer Nigel Gray maintains the sense that the album is an immediate, edgy performance unfolding right in front of the listener. The upfront intensity of Juju probably isn't matched anywhere else in the catalog of Siouxsie and the Banshees. Thanks to its killer singles, unrelenting force, and invigorating dynamics, Juju is a post-punk classic.

Tracks

1. Spellbound
2. Into The Light
3. Arabian Knights
4. Halloween
5. Monitor
6. Night Shift
7. Sin In My Heart
8. Head Cut
9. Voodoo Dolly


download

Siouxsie And The Banshees - Peepshow

Released : 5 September 1988
Recorded : 1988
Genre : Alternative Rock
Length : 42:41
Label : Polydor (UK), Geffen, Warner Bros. (USA)
Producer : Siouxsie and the Banshees, Mike Hedges

As good as it is in places, Peepshow is the sound of a once-terrific band treading water. Some of the songs are fine, but they're too layered in self-referential mystique to actually win over listeners. The single ("Peek-a-Boo") is one exception -- a seductive glimpse of the sleek lines and pouty truculence of old. But other songs, including two singles -- "Killing Jar" and "Last Beat of My Heart" -- fail to convince. The obituary writers started sharpening their pencils.

Tracks

1. Peek-A-Boo
2. The Killing Jar
3. Scarecrow
4. Carousel
5. Burn Up
6. Ornaments Of Gold
7. Turn To Stone
8. Rawhead And Bloodybones
9. The Last Beat Of My Heart
10.Rhapsody


download

Siouxsie And The Banshees - The Thorn EP

Released : 19 October 1984
Genre : Post-Punk
Label : Polydor Records
Producer : Siouxsie and the Banshees, Mike Hedges

This EP again shows that Siouxsie and the Banshees were very talented, but definitly had some difficulties with keeping the pace. "Red Over White" sadly gets a little boring towards the end, and "Voices" sounds quite dull and uninspired from the start.
On the other side, the musical power of "Overground" and first and foremost "Placebo Effect" is definitly worth hearing. The latter song being one of my all-time goth & dark wave classics.

Tracks

1. Overground
2. Voices
3. Placebo Effect
4. Red Over White


download

Friday, November 4, 2011

April Showers - Abandon Ship 7"

Released : 1984
Genre : Indie Pop, New Wave
Label : Chrysalis
Producer : Anne Dudley

This is probably one of the best of the obscure/unknown pop singles of the '80s; a string-filled, lush number with a bassline to kill for, and an (Scottish?) accented cutie who orders her objet du desir at the end to 'come on in/the world is lovely.' The flipside "Everytime We Say Goodbye" is not as good, but a bit more upbeat, and a more danceable bassline. Why this single is not more well-known is a travesty.

Tracks

1. Abandon Ship
2. Everytime We Say Goodbye


download

April Showers - Abandon Ship

The March Violets - Deep 7''

Released : 1985
Genre : Gothic Rock
Label : Rebirth
Producer : March Violets, Tim Parry

The March Violets are an English goth rock band of the 1980s, incorporating singers of both sexes, drum machine rhythms and echo laden electric guitar, much in the way of scene mates The Sisters of Mercy, who also originated from the city of Leeds. Seven March Violets' singles have made it into the UK Indie Chart; Natural History LP also was an indie hit (#3, 1984).
"Deep" is the 6th single of the band which releaed in 1985.

Tracks

1. Deep
2. El Dorado


download

The March Violets - Deep

The Mighty Lemon Drops - World Without End

Released : 1988
Recorded at Rockfield Studios, Wales except "Breaking Down" Recorded at Amazon Studios, Liverpool.
Genre : Jangle Pop, Indie Rock, New Wave, C86, College Rock
Lenght : 40:58
Label : Sire
Producer : Tim Palmer

A year after Echo & the Bunnymen released their final album of the '80s, the Mighty Lemon Drops recorded World Without End, an LP that actually sounds closer to the Echo & the Bunnymen's earlier stabs at late-'60s psychedelia. Recalling Echo & the Bunnymen albums such as Crocodiles and Heaven Up Here, World Without End is almost like a missing piece in the Bunnymen's discography. Dave Newton's ringing, swirling guitars reflect -- or should that be echo? Will Sergeant's distinct Bunnymen riffs, and Paul Marsh's moody, hollow voice mirrors the woeful baritone of Ian McCulloch. However, the band deserves praise for transcending, and not merely imitating, the work of their influences. The opening track, "Inside Out," is a minefield of sparkling pop hooks -- finger-snapping percussion, toe-tapping guitars, and a chorus so catchy that one listen to the song can turn into an addiction. Many of the tracks are propelled by Keith Rowley's forceful drumming; producer Tim Palmer wisely thrusts the percussion prominently into the mix, allowing every song, even the slower pieces, to have a sense of motion. Tony Linehan's stimulating basslines drive "In Everything You Do" and "Fall Down (Like the Rain)." The lyrics are often unhappy, and while they lack Echo & the Bunnymen's poetic narratives, there is real feeling in the vocals. World Without End is one of the finest British post-punk albums of the '80s. Its parts may be borrowed, but it runs like a well-oiled machine.

Tracks

1. Inside Out
2. One By One
3. In Every Thing Yo Do
4. Hear Me Call
5. No Bounds
6. Fall Down (Like The Rain)
7. Crystal Clear
8. Hollow Inside
9. Closer To You
10.Breaking Down
11.Shine


download

The Mighty Lemon Drops - Happy Head

Released : 1986
Recorded at Rockfield Studios, Wales
Genre : College Rock, Indie Rock, Jangle Pop, C-86
Label : Sire
Producer : Stephen Street

The Mighty Lemon Drops were one of the prominent bands of the C86 scene. Their music consisted in fast, aggressive jangle-pop songs, a mellow and more 60s-sounding version of "Heaven Up Here" by Echo & The Bunnymen.
Despite being quite raw, this record is a good psychedelic-rock album, with some of the band's fastest and more aggressive songs, and most of all, a great Byrds/early Beatles inspired guitar tone.

Tracks

1. The Other Side of You
2. My Biggest Thrill
3. All The Way
4. Hypnotised
5. Like an Angel
6. Behind Your Back
7. Happy Head
8. Pass You By
9. Take Me Up
10.On My Mind
11.Something Happens
12.Turn Me Round


download

The Mighty Lemon Drops - Out Of Hand

Released : 1987
Genre : C86, Indie Pop, Jangle Pop
Label : Sire
Producer : The Mighty Lemon Drops

A fine little EP. "Out of Hand" is one of the best songs the MLD did. A few other good songs, but the rest is fairly boring live versions of songs from Happy Head. Now included on the Happy Head CD.

Tracks

1. Out of Hand
2. Going Under
3. Count Me Out
4. My Biggest Thrill (Live)
5. Splash #One (Now I'm Home)
6. Rollercoaster
7. Hypnotised (Live)
8. The Other Side of You (Live)


download

The Mighty Lemon Drops - Fall Down (Like The Rain) 12"

Released : 1988
Genre : Indie Rock, Jangle Pop
Label : Blue Guitar Records

Tracks

1. Fall Down (Like The Rain)
2. Inside Out (Extended Version)
3. Paint It Black
4. Laughter



download

The Mighty Lemon Drops - Inside Out

Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Go-Betweens - Right Here

The Go-Betweens - Tallulah

Released : 1987
Recorded : January 1987 at Camden, London, England
Genre : Rock, Alternative Rock, Indie Rock
Length : 39:11
Label : Beggars Banquet Records then LO-MAX Records
Producer : Richard Preston

Tallulah, the Go-Betweens fifth album, was supposed to be the band's breakthrough recording in America. That said, its sound is nearly a full-on break with the edginess that began to fade on 1986's Liberty Belle and The Black Diamond Express. More lush, rounded, and polished, it sounds like a record made in the mid-'80s thanks in large part to Lindy Morrison's use of drum programs in addition to her trap kit. Add to this the contributions of new member Amanda Brown on violin, oboe, and backing vocals and one has a revamped band. Fans didn't take to the new sound with kindness initially, but the songwriting of Forster and McLennan was so much more focused and taut, it more than compensates for production errors. Nowhere is this more evident than "Right Here," the album's opener. The multi-tracked violins drive the center of the tune sprightly, in an off-rail, cut-time tempo. Robert Vickers' colorful keyboards and Morrison's programming are truly adornments, but McLennan's soulful yet philosophical vocal anchors the tune on bedrock and is supported by a beautiful chorus of backing vocals led by Brown. "You Tell Me," sung by Forster, leads with distorted guitars held in check by the sweetness of the melody and Morrison's meld of trap and synthetic drumming. Once more, keyboards counter the guitars as Vickers accents the beat pushing Forster and the wafting backing vocals deeper inside lyric and melody. McLennan's "Someone Else's Wife," is, by contrasts, stark, dark, and suffocating with moody strings accenting the protagonist's plight. The driving "Cure-ish" riff that kicks off Forster's "I Just Get Caught Out," is nearly transcendent; its pained verses are juxtaposed against backing vocalists filling the refrain with a cheery ba-ba-ba-ba-bum. The nearly funky organ and bass swirl of "Cut It Out," is unlike any Go-Betweens song before or since. The beautiful cello and violin section that fuels "The House That Jack Kerouac Built," with a shimmering rhythm guitar line, is the perfect maelstrom for Forster's gorgeous images of stolen illicit love in a dodgy cinema and are topped only by his desperate delivery. This recording may not have had fans of the band swooning at the time, but despite its production it has aged exceptionally well although it remains a product firmly of its time. The raw emotion, vulnerable tenderness and romantic desperation in its songs, textured by the blend of strings and keyboards, adds depth and dimension to this well of fine songs.

Tracks

1. Right Here
2. You Tell Me
3. Someone Else's Wife
4. I Just Get Caught Out
5. Cut It Out
6. The House That Jack Kerouac Built
7. Bye Bye Pride
8. Spirit Of A Vampyre
9. The Clarke Sisters
10.Hope Then Strife


download

The Go-Betweens - Worlds Apart EP


Released : November 21, 2005
Recorded and mixed at La Chunky Towers.
Genre : Pop Rock, Indie Rock
Label : LO-MAX
Producer : Mark Wallis & The Go-Betweens

Worlds Apart is a 7" vinyl EP by The Go-Betweens, released on 21 November 2005 on LO-MAX Records in the UK only. It contains a collaboration with Sushil K Dade alternately known as Future Pilot A.K.A., along with other songs recorded at the Oceans Apart sessions.

Tracks

1. Finding You
2. City of Lights
3. Crystal Shacks


download

The Go-Betweens - Send Me A Lullaby

Released : November 1981 (AUS), February 1982 (UK), 2002
Recorded : July 1981, Melbourne, Australia
Genre : Rock, Alternative Rock, Indie Rock
Length : 35:37
Label : Missing Link (AUS), Rough Trade Records (UK), Circus
Producer : The Go-Betweens and Tony Cohen

The first official album from the Go-Betweens, after a slew of earlier recordings and initial singles, was described by Forster and McLennan in later years as sounding like a practice room session, "metallic folk in a way." It's a fair assessment, and certainly while it's the work of a young band, Send Me a Lullaby is still a promising start, showing that the original trio had an aesthetic and the talent to carry its work over an album's length. Another McLennan comment, that it's the 1981 version of the Pixies, is partially accurate -- there's no walls of feedback or screaming, but the songs are short, brisk, angular. The not-so-secret weapon, as one can imagine, is the singing of Forster and McLennan, investing even the sharpest songs and most cutting rhythms (check out the relentless rhythms of the art-funk "The Girls Have Moved") with a sometimes desperate and sometimes withdrawn emotion. At points the vocals are forced, as can also be heard on Very Quick on the Eye, but both are starting to audibly try out other approaches. As musicians, the three definitely had something of that 'metallic folk' thing about them, with Morrison's drumming adding a sometimes brusque but (except for part of "Eight Pictures") never brutal touch to the proceedings that holds up quite well. Forster's guitar work and McLennan's bass are both interesting to hear in context given how much of an influence they would exert in later years. Rather than sounding like they're trying to recodify rock and roll or the like, it's a series of often gentle explorations in restraint, saying more with less. There are definitely more thrashy numbers that live might well have completely rocked out -- "People Know," with its squirrelly guest saxophone from James Freud, is the most likely candidate of all.

Tracks

1. Your Turn, My Turn
2. One Thing Can Hold Us
3. People Know
4. The Girls Have Moved
5. Midnight To Neon
6. Eight Pictures
7. Careless
8. All About Strength
9. Ride
10.Hold Your Horses
11.Arrow In A Bow
12.It Could Be Anyone


download

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Men Without Hats - Rhythm Of Youth

Released : March 20, 1982
Recorded : 1981-1982
Genre : Synthpop
Length : 40:20
Label : Statik Records, MCA, Virgin
Producer : Marc Durand

Men Without Hats' debut album Rhythm of Youth was a set of catchy, appealing synth pop. Although the material on the album was wildly inconsistent, the group's energy was infectious, making up for the weaker songs. And when the band managed to write a solid melody -- such as the hit single "The Safety Dance" -- the results were quite memorable.

Tracks

1. Ban The Game
2. Living In China
3. The Great Ones Remember
4. I Got The Message
5. Cocoricci (Le Tango Des Voleurs)
6. The Safety Dance
7. Ideas For Walls
8. Things In My Life
9. I Like
10.The Great Ones Remember (Reprise)


download

Men Without Hats - Freeways EP

Released : 1985
Recorded : 1980, 1984-1985
Genre : Synthpop
Label : Statik Records

After the comparative failure of their second album, Folk of the 80's (Part III), Men Without Hats released this EP to fulfill their contract with Statik/Sire in Canada. It was largely a reissue of their original 1980 EP Folk of the 80's, which had been released independently and was difficult to find by 1985. The four original EP tracks were featured on one side of this reissue, while the other side included just one track, "Freeways (Euromix)". (That song had previously been issued on 12" singles in Britain and America but had never been released in Canada.) The EP came with all-new cover art and an insert with a photo of Hats lead singer Ivan Doroschuk. The Freeways EP is now a much-sought-after collector's item, particularly the cassette version. (The latter format featured three bonus tracks -- English-, French- and German-language versions of "Freeways.") This is atmospheric synth-pop, very much of its era ('80/'81), but lots of fun, and yes, you can dance if you want to.

Tracks

Folk Of The 80's
1. Modern(e) Dancing
2. Utter Space
3. Antarctica
4. Security (Everybody Feels Better With)
Freeways
5. Freeways


download

Men Without Hats - Folk Of The 80's EP

Released : 1980
Recorded : 1980
Genre : Synthpop
Length : 15:19
Label : Trend Records
Producer : Marc Durand

Folk of the 80's is an EP released by Canadian synth-pop group Men Without Hats. Recorded in the summer of 1980 at Studio A in Montreal, Canada and released later that year, it was their first release.
The song 'Antarctica' is featured here in its original length with an extra instrumental break and verse that does not appear in the edit used on the album Rhythm Of Youth and future compilation albums.
All four songs on the record later appeared on the band's Freeways EP in 1985.
The EP is not to be confused with Folk of the 80's (Part III), the band's second studio album.

Tracks

1. Modern(e) Dancing
2. Utter Space
3. Antarctica
4. Security (Everybody Feels Better With)


download

Men Without Hats - Safety Dance

Monday, October 17, 2011

Depeche Mode - 101

Released : March 13, 1989
Recorded : Pasadena Rose Bowl, June 18, 1988
Genre : Synthpop, Alternative Dance, New Wave
Length : 95:45
Label : Mute, Sire (US/Canada)
Producer : Depeche Mode

While the band later felt the end results were something of a mixed effort, at 101's best it's a quietly revelatory study in typical D.A. Pennebaker style of a group that ended up becoming genuine American superstars without following a conventional route to stardom. It also benefits from none of the outrageous self-importance of U2's near contemporaneous Rattle and Hum. 101 combines footage from Depeche Mode's 1988 stateside tour and the tracking of a number of New York fans who won a contest to be in the film and follow their idols via bus. The fans themselves actually are more or less the stars of the film, a fun cross-section of late-'80s folks who are basically just themselves -- changing dates on driver's licenses to buy beer, arguing about art versus fashion -- nothing earth-shattering, just the humor of life. As for the bandmembers, they're seen doing everything from prepping up publicity shots, killing time with pinball machines, gearing up for performances, being interviewed, and telling odd stories -- again, it's not the end of the world, it's just what is done. Alan Wilder goes into both a bit of history and a demonstration of his setup, while Andy Fletcher admits he's in the band more or less just "to keep everyone together!" Interspersed throughout it all are live cuts, most from the record-shattering concert at the Rose Bowl that provided the full soundtrack to the film, including the famous throw-your-arms-back-and-forth sequence during "Never Let Me Down Again" that transforms the audience into a sea of limbs. Far from being the lifeless zombie of synth music stereotype, David Gahan throws himself into his performance like a young Freddie Mercury, though it's true that Fletcher does prove why he's known for doing little more than clapping his hands and singing along. Add to that a ream of employees who look like they came out of This Is Spinal Tap, most notoriously PR person and future wife of Gahan, Theresa Conroy (there's also a knowing backstage reference à la David St. Hubbins to "rock & roll" at one point), and more long-gone fashions and haircuts than can be counted, and 101 is a surprising treat.

Tracks

disc 1
Pimpf
Behind The Wheel
Strangelove
Something To Do
Blasphemous Rumours
Stripped
Somebody
Things You Said

disc 2
1. Black Celebration
2. Shake The Disease
3. Nothing
4. Pleasure Little Treasure
5. People Are People
6. A Question Of Time
7. Never Let Me Down Again
8. A Question Of Lust
9. Master And Servant
10. Just Can't Get Enough
11. Everything Counts


download

disc 1
disc 2

Depeche Mode - Get The Balance Right And Live Tracks

Released : 31 January 1983
Format : 7" vinyl, 12" vinyl, CD, box set
Recorded : 1982
Genre : Synthpop, Industrial, New Wave
Length : 3:13 (7"/single version), 7:58 (12" version)
Label : Mute
Producer : Depeche Mode and Daniel Miller

Get the Balance Right! is the seventh single by Depeche Mode, originally released on 31 January 1983. It is the first Depeche Mode single with Alan Wilder as an official band member, and the first with a song written by both Martin Gore and Wilder ("The Great Outdoors!").
Get the Balance Right! was not included on the following album Construction Time Again, but does appear on the American compilation People Are People and the compilation The Singles 81-85.

Tracks

Studio Side
1. Get The Balance Right (Original Mix)
Live Side
1. My Secret Garden
2. See You
3. Satellite
4. Tora! Tora! Tora!


download

Depeche Mode - Strangelove

Depeche Mode - Speak & Spell


Released : 5 October 1981
Recorded : December 1980–August 1981, Blackwing Studios, London
Genre : Synthpop
Length : 44:58
Label : Mute, Sire (US/Canada)
Producer : Depeche Mode, Daniel Miller

Though probably nobody fully appreciated it at the time -- perhaps least of all the band! -- Depeche Mode's debut is at once both a conservative, functional pop record and a groundbreaking release. While various synth pioneers had come before -- Gary Numan, early Human League, late-'70s Euro-disco, and above all Kraftwerk all had clear influence on Speak & Spell -- Depeche became the undisputed founder of straight-up synth pop with the album's 11 songs, light, hooky, and danceable numbers about love, life, and clubs. For all the claims about "dated" '80s sounds from rock purists, it should be noted that the basic guitar/bass/drums lineup of rock is almost 25 years older than the catchy keyboard lines and electronic drums making the music here. That such a sound would eventually become ubiquitous during the Reagan years, spawning lots of crud along the way, means the band should no more be held to blame for that than Motown and the Beatles for inspiring lots of bad stuff in the '60s. Credit for the album's success has to go to main songwriter Vince Clarke, who would extend and arguably perfect the synth pop formula with Yazoo and Erasure; the classic early singles "New Life," "Dreaming of Me," and "Just Can't Get Enough," along with numbers ranging from the slyly homoerotic "Pretty Boy" to the moody thumper "Photographic," keep everything moving throughout. David Gahan undersings about half the album, and Martin Gore's two numbers lack the distinctiveness of his later work, but Speak & Spell remains an undiluted joy.

Tracks

1. New Life
2. I Sometimes Wish I Was Dead
3. Puppets
4. Boys Say Go!
5. Nodisco
6. What's Your Name?
7. Photographic
8. Tora! Tora! Tora!
9. Big Muff
10.Any Second Now (Voices)
11.Just Can't Get Enough


download

Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Pale Fountains - Pacific Street

Released : 1984
Genre : New Wave
Label : Virgin
Producer : Howard Gray, The Pale Fountains

The bounciness of the Pale Fountains went penalized in the days of Echo and the Bunnymen and the Smiths. "Optimism -- yuck." Michael Head's stylistic hopscotch and wide-eyed sunnyness might have translated better in the late ‘90s, had he stuck with that program for his later band, Shack. If the band had set their sights on one or two areas of their record collections for inspiration instead of darn near everything, Pacific Street might not have been so out of place when it was released. Bold indeed, the expanded version of Pacific Street (issued by Virgin with four bonus tracks) veers from every angle of ‘70s AM soft rock, stylish soul pop à la Orange Juice (but not as effective), Bacharach/David, and Brazilian jazz. You can imagine Dionne Warwick singing the chorus of "Abergele Next Time"; the non-album single "Palm of My Hand" veers dangerously close to muzak, and the steel drum-and-trumpet combos were more than enough to incite gagging from the pop underground. Too bad. Like the following From Across the Kitchen Table, Pacific Street wasn't able to succeed on the charts, so the too varied and too happy Pale Fountains were left in limbo. For all its faults, the band's debut isn't half bad, and it doesn't sound horribly outdated decades later.

Tracks

1. Reach
2. Something On My Mind
3. Unless
4. Southbound Excursion
5. Natural
6. Faithful Pillow (Part I)
7. You'll Start A War
8. Beyond Fridays Field
9. Abergele Next Time
10.Crazier
11.Faithful Pillow (Part II)


download

The Pale Fountains - ... From Across The Kitchen Table

Released : 1985
Genre : New Wave
Label : Virgin
Producer : Ian Broudie

The Pale Fountains' Ian Broudie-produced second record ditches a couple of the scatterbrained influences of the debut, so it makes for a slightly more consistent listen. Not all of the odd wrinkles are abandoned, though; they still sound as if they are trying too hard to distinguish themselves from the rest of the flock. The Fountains' strength lies in folksy pop, but on a few too many occasions, the incessant smoothness and inability to latch onto one style holds them back. Surprisingly, the title track is almost synth-pop, but a smattering of horns makes sure it isn't completely such. On "September Sting," they try their hands at Laurel Canyon country-rock and fall flat on their jumpers. When they want to, they can write finely tuned, sophisticated pop songs that are quite pleasant. Instrumentally, "Stole the Love" doesn't sound a great deal different from the Smiths. "Shelter" and "Jean's Not Happening" are fine strummers. Though a decent record and an improvement over the debut, Kitchen Table frustrates. They were too anxious to zig or zag when they could have stayed the course. After establishing themselves as a cult band, the Pale Fountains eventually broke up, with Michael Head forming the similarly cultish Shack.

Tracks

1. Shelter
2. Stole The Love
3. Jean's Not Happening
4. Bicycle Thieves
5. Limit
6. 27 Ways To Get Back Home
7. Bruised Arcade
8. These Are The Things
9. It's Only Hard
10.... From Across The Kitchen Table
11.Hey
12.September Sting


download

The Pale Fountains - Longshot For Your Love

Released : 1998
Genre : New Wave
Label : Marina Records
Producer : Dave Dade

Collected and released when Head was on the verge of a new level of appreciation via Shack, Longshot for Your Love -- compiling radio sessions, unreleased tracks, and various other obscurities -- made for an appreciative peek back at his early-'80s days with the Pale Fountains. The opening liner notes in the booklet from Yasuharu Konishi of Pizzicato Five are perfectly appropriate. There's a clear sense throughout this enjoyable disc how Head's first outfit provided a bridge between swinging '60s pop and the efforts of a later generation, not merely with Pizzicato Five but Belle & Sebastian or any number of Burt Bacharach-loving acts of the '90s. Head's singing has a rich but clear resonance, calling to mind the exquisite team of Robert Forster and Grant McLennan, while his band's preference for non-feedback-producing guitars ("Love Situation" the notable exception!) and inventive percussion and string arrangements works wonderfully. About the only band remotely like it in the U.K. would have been the earliest incarnation of Pulp, but the Pale Fountains have a sunnier, fuller feeling to their songs, helped in large part by the inspired inclusion of trumpeter Diagram. Those who know him best from his work with James or Spaceheads will enjoy his delicate leads and gentle backing on songs like both takes of "Just a Girl" and a peppy cover of the James Bond movie theme "We Have All the Time in the World." The two BBC sessions presented -- the first a four-song John Peel effort, the second a three-song turn on The Old Grey Whistle Test -- are the heart of the album, and deservedly so, including wonderful takes on the title track, "Benoit's Christmas," and a cover of Deniece Williams' "Free." Detailed essays on the group and a slew of often amusing photographs fill out this excellent CD.

Tracks

1. Just A Girl
2. (There's Always) Something On My Mind
3. Lavinia's Dream
4. Longshot For Your Love
5. Thank You
6. The Norfolk Broads
7. Benoit's Christmas
8. Hey There Fred
9. Palm Of My Hand
10.Free
11.We Have All The Time In The World
12.Just A Girl
13.Love Situation


download

The Pale Fountains - Thank You

Friday, October 7, 2011

China Crisis – Working With Fire And Steel 12"


Released : 1983
Recorded : Track 1,2 Recorded at Amazon and The Manor,  track 3 Recorded at Amazon 16 track, track 4 Recorded in Eddie's bedroom.
Genre : New Wave, Synthpop
Producer : Mike Howlett (track 1, 2), Eddie (track 3), Garry, Gil Norton (track 3, 4)

Utterly hypnotic synths, and the unintelligible pseudo-Commie lyrics ('Fashion play your part/to be workers of Red'---huh???) seal the deal.

Tracks

1. Working With Fire And Steel
2. Fire And Steel (Mix)
3. Dockland
4. Forever I And I


download

China Crisis – Black Man Ray 12"


Released : 1985
Genre : New Wave, Synthpop
Label : Virgin
Producer :  Walter Becker, China Crisis

Tracks

A nice title track and the real bonus of the 12 inch is Its Never Too Late, far to good a track to buried on a limited edition disc.

1. Black Man Ray
2. It's Never Too Late
3. Animalistic (A Day At The Zoo Mix)


download

http://www.mediafire.com/?t55wgsy1a2gg4de

China Crisis – Wishful Thinking 12"


Released : 1984
Format : 7" vinyl, 12" vinyl
Recorded : 1983
Genre : New Wave, Synthpop
Length : 4:08 (7" single edit), 4:40 (12" single / album version)
Label : Virgin
Producer : Mike Howlett

Wishful Thinking is a song by English pop group China Crisis, released as the third single of their 1983 album Working with Fire and Steel – Possible Pop Songs Volume Two. It reached #9 in the UK charts in early 1984, becoming their only top 10 hit single in that country. The song is included on numerous compilation albums.

Tracks

1. Wishful Thinking
2. Some People I Know To Lead Fantastic Lives
3. This Occupation (Extended Mix)
4. Some People I Know To Lead Fantastic Lives (Extended Mix)


download

http://www.mediafire.com/?c64gi125gaqqlgz

China Crisis - Wishful Thinking

China Crisis - Hanna Hanna (Extended Mix)


Released : 1984
Recorded : January 31, 1984 at Reading University (live)
Genre : New Wave, Synthpop
Label : Virgin
Producer : Mike Howlett (track 1)

Fantastic live versions of both 'Raincloud' with it's fade-in start and 'African' and white with it's crashing drum start and perhaps the only acceptable drum solo of the eighties.

Tracks

1. Hanna Hanna (Extended Mix)
2. Here Come A Raincloud (Live)
3. African And White (Live)


download

http://www.mediafire.com/?tird021l1l7d8uk