Cabaret Voltaire: Here To Go UK CD5 
- Here To Go [Extended Mix]
- Here To Go [Space Dub]
- Here To Go [Single Mix]
It was an exciting time back in 1987. Sure, sure. The Mid-80s Malaise® was at full gallop, but the CD format was beginning to make inroads down the pathway of singles after a tentative year of floating trial balloons. Surely that must have counted for something? I had bought both 12″ singles of Cab Volt’s “Don’t Argue” earlier on, and “Here To Go” was the second single from their “Code” album that saw them finally signed to EMI and the Big Time after a flirtation with Some Bizzare/Virgin that saw the cult act reaching their imperial phase with an indisputable run of cut-up-electro funk singles that kept me in their thrall. I was thrilled to see this ingle on CD5 format. I think I bought this at a record show in Tampa for probably $12-15, which was still a premium for import CD singles at that time.
Following a lo-fi [but exciting] album of 8-bit sampling power in 1985’s “The Covenant, The Sword, And the Arm Of the Lord,” that had dialed back the slickness of their breakthrough 12″, “Sensoria” while simultaneously jamming its foot on the accelerator pedal, the EMI era was all about hitting closer to their powerful but sleek sound of 1984. The title came from a famous quote from Brion Gysin, one of the luminaries who spurred the Sheffield onward from the start. The lyrics were rife with paradoxical couplets setting up the full spectrum of possible response between the poles they defined.
Lighten up/Get serious
Stick with it/Sit back
Live with it/Commit yourself” – “Here To Go”
The “Code” album from whence this came had been produced by Adrian Sherwood and the band so it sounded powerful, if more streamlined to Sherwood’s more dub-heavy On-U Sound ideals. The extended version of the song also had John Robie overdubs and ultimately a remix by François Kevorkian, giving this single a trio of heavy talent in the dance music realm. Did it become a top heavy disaster?
Not really. The fact that Sherwood was producing with EMI holding the whip gave it a sense of restraint to begin with. Robie upped the synth lines with his overdubs and brought in some female backing vocals as he had on “Don’t Argue.” But I would, uh, argue, that S.D. Clarke and Julie Roberts on this single didn’t go over the top into soul queen histrionics as did Dolette McDonald and Tessa Niles [whom Gary Numan fans will recall from this period] on “Don’t Argue.”
Elsewhere the atypically funky guitar from…Bill Nelson [!] added tied into more traditional funk forms that CV always admired. I’d love to ask Nelson how he managed to end up playing with Cab Volt for this album, as his performance sounded like nothing else I’d ever heard from him. The pre-litigious samples were also a bit of fun as what sounded like a sample of The Human Beat Box® Darren Robinson from The Fat Boys was put to use as percussive detail that might have been a Roland 808 cowbell otherwise. So we had the instance of a human being imitating a machine, being sampled and controlled by a machine! Meta enough for you?
The Space Dub was closer to what we would have gotten from an unfettered Sherwood with dropouts and manipulation, though Kevorkian favored a denser sonic space. The 7″ mix was an edit from the extended version, so it was the radio mix, not the LP cut of similar length. This was the better of the two singles form “Code” in that it had less soul added to the mix ex post facto. While sonically clean, it remembered to be hard. Which is why we listened to Cabaret Voltaire in the first place. Unfortunately, that was a lesson that they threw out the window of their toolbox on their next album outing.
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