It feels like a couple of years ago when were were discussing that perfect Vicious Pink Phenomenon collection, and in the comments, our friend slur mentioned that the delightful Minimal Wave label was teasing a new 2xLP from the synthetic duo. But it was only scant months ago and that time to reveal all has already come up to bite my ankles. It looks like we’ll have a hefty chunk of material on our doorsteps as of next February 14th, of 2022. A more perfect Valentine’s Day present I can’t imagine. What will it entail?
Vicious Pink: West View 81-86 – US – 2xLP 
- Cccan’t You See
- My Private Tokyo 12″
- 8:15 To Nowhere
- Why Me
- My Man + Me
- Baby it’s Too Late
- Blue [A World Of Blue]
- Why Me [demo]
- 8:15 to Nowhere [demo]
- Fetish [demo]
- In The Swim [demo]
- Ask Me To Stay 12″
- Face Hugger [21st Century 80s]
- Eyes That Smile
All of the titles in bold are previously unreleased commercially. That’s a lot to love. Notice that a few known Vicious Pink Phenomena [Polydor] tracks are mixed in with Vicious Pink [EMI] tracks. I love it. We all know it was the same band even if lawyers would not recognize that fact. “Blue [Love Mix]” was on the Canadian 1986 LP and the Cherry Red CD, but I’ll bet that the version here will be a different mix.
The details of the LP are very nice. We get lots of “new” material for our ears on an LP of 999 pressings. Half of them are 160g pink as shown, with the rest in black. The glossy heavyweight sleeve has a 12 page booklet with the full story behind the band and lyrics and photos. I’m glad they haven’t fallen for the 180g syndrome. Orders made through the Minimal Wave webstore get a 5″ x 7″ postcard with an unpublished image as bait. But the best bait of all for me is the appearance of unheard Vicious Pink material decades later [there was never enough] and the price for which this unit is selling. A sensible $28.00 for the package and it helps me immeasurably as Minimal Wave is an American boutique label so I won’t have to lose a kidney for postage costs.
The Minimal Wave webstore currently has lovely preview samples of the entire album and let me assure you that the quality of the unheard material is equal to everything you [hopefully] have in your already extant Vicious Pink collections in your own private Record Cells.”Baby It’s Too Late” is an electro wonder of potent vitality. We may be getting new band favorites with this album. And the demo versions are hardly perfunctory.
“Fetish” has always been a juggernaut to my ears, but the demo pulls back from the massive 12″ we know and love to reveal a lean, minimal tech version that ends up sounding like a lost track from “Metamatic.” Wow! I want to order this right now. But I’m trying to cut back from music buying. But I really need to save my shekels and pre-order this soon. I’ll be kicking myself when the LP is $80 in the aftermarket in short order. This project is so fascinating and desirable that I’m not even going to complain that there’s no CD in these, the end times. I basically I will need to use this along with my collection [and those few discs which I still need to buy] to make my own Vicious Pink BSOG [boxed set of god] one day in my dotage. Hit that button. You know you can’t resist.
As welcome as this is, they never managed a real album which is a shame but otherwise pretty unique for a band / act that had commercial success. Postage will kill me for this one if no Euro distributor gets this for wholesale. I want some globalization back, buying from the UK is now a nightmare too.
Per coincidence Soft Cell’s 2nd proper revival album will be out in February too, with CD / MC / Vinyl options and physical singles with different tracklists.
slur – Maybe they had management issues or dramas that we can only guess about? Given the excesses of the era, it’s a miracle that any music was ever issued! I can’t imagine that there won’t be Euro distribution of some kind, since on the face of things, the aberration was in a US label even putting this put to begin with! That it happened is down to the taste of Minimal Wave. [I still need that JYL album while I can afford it – in theory]. Hopefully, I can buy both. Soft Cell is just fine, but this is the priority!
I know they had issues after splitting as a pair but they kept working. There was even a whole album recorded (‘Blue’) which Parlophone did’nt release due ‘too less guitars and hits’ and so it faded out according to Brian Moss and in 1987 they started another band “Love & Destruction” with no releases I know off.
I really wounder if Soft Cell asked them for their 40 (gasp) years of Non-Stop Erotic Cabaret Shows.
Hello. First time here and judging not only from the breadth and width of knowledge, but also the enthusiasm bordering upon reverence…I may have struck gold with stumbling onto this site. And I can obviously see that this site does NOT evolve/revolve around pyrite.
I am writing today to add an additional viewpoint for Vicious’ songs. As a DJ, it’s part of my job to educate my audience, but that is never to take the full driver’s seat (sorry) to ensuring that folks have a great time.
For closing tracks in clubs (started in early 80’s) up and down the western seabord (there’s a phrase you don’t see often enough)…I always would have to play two to get the crowds out. An upbeat number for the penultimate track before leaving was always an easy choice. VPP’s “8:15 to Nowhere”. The very fact that it’s an instrumental is enough that people would always ask ‘who is this’, while dancing madly (backwards). Which of course there’s nothing wrong with that. I’ve known scores of people who had zero idea about VPP, and those that did even admitted that 8:15 is kind of a sleeper track. Nobody expects it. Everybody loves it.
Anyway, I never could learn to be quiet, so I’ve taken up a bunch of time to post this. I do hope that you have as much interest (or even fun) reading it as I did writing it.
p.s. for those that are curious, the last track of the night would either be Tel Aviv from Duran Duran, Second Steps from Visage, or a freestyle pick.
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Scott Kathan – Welcome to the comments! Please don’t be shy with chiming in! That you were actually spinning the tunes we discuss [and revere] in PPM gives your thoughts a certain gravity that can’t be denied. Due to location, I wasn’t able to enjoy dancing to this music in clubs when it was current. I had to rely on the “Old Wave Night” phenomenon as it manifested by the late 80s, or at the very earliest, by club sets prior to a concert situation ca. 1986-1988. And many, many of my favorite bands never found any currency at all with the local club DJs. Heck, my main club was called “Visage!” Did I once hear that band played there on the hundreds of nights I spent there until closing on Old Wave Wednesdays? That would be a “no.” Sadly. And you would have been elected cult leader by my many DD fanatic friends for playing a deep cut like “Tel Aviv!”