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Archive for the ‘1980s’ Category

Wah! – The Story of the Blues (1982)

October 12, 2017 Leave a comment

Can’t believe I hadn’t posted this before!

Pete Wylie was a “member” of the “crucial three” in Liverpool in the late 1970s. Also present were Julian Cope (Teardrop Explodes) and Duke McCool AKA Ian McCulloch of Echo and the Bunnymen.

Pete Wylie recorded under a variety of names: Wah! Heat; Wah!; The Mighty Wah! Shambeko! Say Wah!, etc. There’s a theme there I feel.

The early Wah! singles will definitely need inclusion on this blog – “Better Scream”, “Seven Minutes To Midnight”, “Don’t Step On The Cracks”, etc.

However, this was their one moment in the commercial spotlight – and what a moment. The seven inch version, “Part 1” was the Top Of The Pops pleaser; Part 2 “Talking Blues” is a 3 minute polemic that explains the philosophy underpinning Wah! and much of early 80s anti-Thatcherite indie music – it”s stirring stuff!

The 7 inch single and then the 8+ minute magnum opus

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The Chameleons – Intrigue In Tangiers (1985)

October 12, 2017 Leave a comment

From Ethiopia to Morocco (no, really …)

I loved The Chameleons while living in Manchester in 1984-1985. My other half and I saw them live at their home town gig at the Ritz in Manchester around this time and they stood out from most bands of the period with their rare combination of aggression and contemplation.

I’ve previously posted their debut single “In Shreds” here (what a stupendous song that is!)

“Intrigue in Tangiers” is taken from The Chameleons second LP What Does Anything Mean? Basically.

The LP version, the Peel Session and then a spine-tingling live performance from 1984! The somewhat muted reaction of the audience probably a consequence of the track not having been released yet!

 

Soul Brothers – Sebenzubuye (1989)

October 8, 2017 Leave a comment

Kings of the South African township jive who started back in the 1970s and whose sound underpinned so many of the records released on the wonderful Earthworks label during the 1980s.

They released so many great tracks but why not start here? Melancholic and uplifting in equal measure, “Sebenzubuye” featured on the Impimpi LP released in 1989 and its only fault is that it isn’t twice as long. At least.

Perfection!

Laraaji – The Dance #2 and #3 (1980)

October 8, 2017 Leave a comment

Over the last few weeks, I’ve been re-reading a number of books by David Toop (Ocean of Sound, Haunted Weather, etc) and listening to all the wonderful CDs in the “Ambient” series on Virgin Records associated with those books.

Plenty of gems to post but why not start here?

Produced by Brian Eno, Laraaji was responsible for the Ambient 3 (Day of Radiance) LP released in 1980 on EG Records. Part of a series of stunning releases featuring Eno, these two tracks, in particular, are mesmeric.

Immersive, gamelan-esque, percussive, perfection.

Deutsch Amerikanische Freundschaft – Der Mussolini (1981)

June 24, 2017 Leave a comment

Just combing through this month’s Mojo magazine and one of their recommended tracks to check out was a new Giorgio Moroder remix of Deutsch Amerikanische Freundschaft’s classic track Der Mussolini.

I had a listen but, frankly, it’s a bit insipid compared to the relentless brutality and tunelessness of the original!

Formed in Dusseldorf in 1978, D.A.F. were staples on the John Peel Show in the latest 70s and early 80s. A different take on synth-pop compared to Kraftwerk but another great German record.

Altogether now:

Geh’ in die Knie
Und klatsch’ in die Hände
Beweg’ deine Hüften
Und tanz’ den Mussolini
Tanz’ den Mussolini
Tanz’ den Mussolini

Reese – Just Want Another Chance (1988)

June 18, 2017 Leave a comment

Timeless Detroit techno from one of the founding fathers, Kevin Saunderson; this time operating under his Reese moniker. Although he has also released great stuff as E-Dancer, he is probably most famous for his work with classic Detroit house/techno titans Inner City who he co-founded in 1988.

I stumbled upon this when walking 3 miles back to the pub where I left my car after a great meal last night. Had the iPod (oh, yes!) on random rotation and this came on and mesmerised me.

The bass is relentless, the percussion hardly exists, the synths drop in and out fitfully and Kevin mutters sweet nothings over the top. What’s not to like? A perfect record!

Here are the three versions from the 12″ single. All good, but the first is the killer!

 

 

 

 

This Mortal Coil – Meniscus (1986)

Beautiful, short, guitar and synth instrumental from the band that brought you the defining cover version of Tim Buckley’s extraordinary “Song to the Siren”.

This is taken from their second LP Filigree & Shadow which was released in 1986 on 4AD records.

As Discogs tell us:

This Mortal Coil was a 4AD “supergroup” of sorts that recorded three albums and a few other tracks between 1983 and 1991.

The only official members of the project were 4AD label head Ivo Watts-Russell and well-known producer John Fryer, but many other vocalists and musicians from 4AD (and non-4AD) groups such as Dead Can Dance, Cocteau Twins, Dif Juz, Colourbox, The Wolfgang Press, Cindytalk, Breathless and more were involved at various points in the project’s lifespan.

Two and a half minutes of perfection. If only it were longer!

 

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