M+M/Martha + The Muffins: Danseparc/Mystery Walk US CD 
- Danseparc (Every Day It’s Tomorrow)
- World Without Borders
- Walking Into Walls
- Sins Of Children
- Several Styles Of Blonde Girls Dancing
- Boys In The Bushes
- What People Do For Fun
- Whatever Happened To Radio Valve Road?
- Black Stations / White Stations
- Cooling The Medium
- Come Out And Dance
- I Start To Stop
- Big Trees
- In Between Sleep And Reason
- Garden In The Sky
- Nation Of Followers
- Alibi Room
- Rhythm Of Life
This is a GREAT twofer on One Way featuring the 1983/1984 albums by Martha & The Muffins, which were Mark Gane and Martha Johnson in the process of mutating into M+M, having lost all of their original backing band from the first 3 albums. Talking Heads funk era inform these discs, so if you like angular new wave funk with dense polyrhythms you will be in heaven listening to these albums! They are the best of their breed next to Jerry Harrison’s 1981 “The Red & The Black” album. Mark Gane even lends his extremely caucasian, adenoidal presence to lead vocals on a few cuts [“Walking Into Walls” + “Nation Of Followers”] reminding the listener even more of Talking Heads.
I bought “Danseparc” when it came out in 1984 since I was already a Martha + The Muffins fan. The album was their first for RCA, and it was widely distributed and pretty easy to get. I’d seen the video for “Danseparc” [once] on MTV so I knew to move on that one. I had the group’s first two albums at the time and the move to art-funk surprised me at the time since I had not heard the transitional “This Is The Ice Age” album yet. The Eno-esque “Several Styles Of Blond Girls Dancing” hits an incredible T-heads stride with its multiple movement arrangement making its nearly six minutes pass quickly by. Fittingly enough, Eno-right-hand-man-to-be Daniel Lanois produced “Danseparc” [his sister Jocelyne played bass in the band at the time] and I can conceive of the Muffins work bringing Lanois to Eno’s attention on the strength of his work here.
“I am using you.
Am I amusing you?”
“What People Do For Fun” contains the amazing lyric above repeated tersely throughout the middle eight by vocalist Martha Johnson after she relates a play-by-play of a couple hooking up at a club for a one-night stand. “Sins Of Children” is a great oasis of calm reflection in the program of sometimes twitchy and discomfiting funk.
The following year’s “Mystery Walk” was heralded by the stellar “Black Stations/White Stations” single that manages to beat the Talking Heads at their own game. The thick, hot conga groove was aided strategically with Mark Gane’s grinding synthesizers; providing an incredible contrast of texture. Apart from that single, the music on this album is more calm and placid. “Mystery Walk” is the rural chillout following the neurotic urban vibe of “Danseparc.”
This disc has provided the only reissue thus far of “Mystery Walk” on CD. Three years ago, Cherry Red issued a deluxe RM of “Danseparc” that came complete with the A/B-side of the “Danseparc” 12″ single and a bonus live take of “Sins Of Children.” One more for the Monk’s list. At least I have this disc, since it’s OOP and hard to get. As an admirer of the luscious vibe of “Mystery Walk,” I’m happy to have that on the racks.
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