Steven Jones + Logan Sky Move The Goal Further Out On ‘Rotating Angels’ [part 1]

Jones + Sky in blue

L-R: Logan Sky + Steven Jones ©2019 Marlie Centawer

Has it really been ten months since the last album by restless analog duo Steven Jones + Logan Sky? It seems like we just had time to take in their last album when their VIP subscription service has now dropped three album projects, including this one, in just seven months. My head is spinning at such productivity. By now they have got this band humming along like a finely tuned machine with Jones’ delivery smoldering between his baritone singing and moodier voice over style. While Sky had his analog synth fetish to hold it all together stylishly. All the more reason for the duo to add some new and surprising flavors to their dark cocktail of tech noir synth rock.

Etrangers Musique | UK | CD-R | 2019

Steven Jones + Logan Sky: Rotating Angels UK CD-R [2019]

  1. Rotating Angels
  2. I Bind You
  3. Japanese Girl
  4. Dream: Scream
  5. Dark Projections
  6. Spider’s Kiss
  7. Toy
  8. Loveholic [dubholic]
  9. I Bind You [transmuted]
  10. Japanese Girl [Amboss rermix]
  11. Dark projections [MauSS Costume remix]
  12. Rotating Angels [Comsicomsa remix]

In a welcome addition to their sound, this album finds guitarist Jan Linton adding his vivid EBow guitar to the sounds and this could not please me more. We recently discovered the intriguing Mr. Linton and he’s definitely swimming in waters of my liking. When synth bands get settled, then it’s time to add guitars to the mix. Usually a bass might be the cautious first step a band take, but Jones + Sky didn’t draw the line at “interesting” and went straight for “incredible” by using Linton’s EBow guitar instead.

The cover lets us in on the theme straight away. These were dark, brooding songs of emotional dominance. Inasmuch as last year Mr. Jones declared that Liselotte was not an object, things were different this year. The title track was built on somber piano chords and spartan, slow-tempo Japan-inflected beats [think “Sons Of Pioneers”] that set the stage for him to declare that his love was “visual” and that his “gift” was “mine to unwrap.” A dusky paean to a scopophiliac’s obsession. Linton’s EBow added feline mystery at the song’s halfway point to show that this band had left synthpop behind them for something altogether more sophisticated.

Nimble 808 programming propelled the karmically driven “I Bind You” with its refrain of “all the harm you do, comes back to you.” Linton’s fiery solo in the song’s climax was an immediate payoff for the conceit of getting him into this project. Then it was time for the dark heart of the album. “Japanese Girl” was formed from EBow drones and tribal beats cut with crystalline synth notes as the arrangement drifted like smoke across the soundfield.

The album was revealing a new elegance and intricacy to the band’s vibe. Sure, sure. There were a few night prowlers [they’re always fun] that we’ll get to later, but right now I’m just too blown away by a track like “Dream:Scream.” The delicate piano and flute like synths of Mr. Sky were emotional and subtle. A dreamlike foundation for the pensive vibe here. The rhythms here were particularly adroit, and the whipcrack synth patch percussion on the off beats were the sort of rhythmic fillips that I find absolutely scintillating. Meanwhile the blend of Linton’s EBow and the vocal melodies of Mr. Jones formed a kind of doleful beauty that was entrancing in ways new to the band’s toolkit.

Next: …Remix/Remodel

 

Posted in Record Review, Want List | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Stump: “A Fierce Pancake” Is There When It’s Time For A Mental Palate Cleansing [part 2]

Stump – in their indie days

[…continued from last post]

From the opening of “Living It Down” things only got stranger. “In The Green” was almost a boozy love song to filthy lucre itself, with the verses proffering abject devotion while the choruses cast a colder eye on the dynamics of such a relationship. “Roll the Bodies Over” featured kaleidoscopic wordplay from Mick Lynch that fit together like a tightly cut puzzle on the verses, while the chorus consisted of expansive melodies that actually began to soar above the nervous, chaotic music. For the first time, really. The middle eight was perverse in the extreme as the song ground to a halt to deliver the following burst of lyrics below. Say it just how it looks for a real sense of how it was.

“JACKSPRATCOULDREADNOFACTHISWIFECOULDREADNOFICTION
ANDSOBETWEENTHETWOOFTHEMCREATEDCONTRADICTION” – “Roll The Bodies Over”

The eccentricity peaked with the arrhythmic, stuttering “Bone.” Tattoo bursts of drums managed to connect with some other elements every 13th bar or so to test just how doggedly the human brain seeks to find rhythms even in the most disparate of environments, where such niceties are not always present. The lyrics remind me of the Dawn Of Man segment in the film “2001: A Space Odyssey.” The bone in this case being a weapon similar to the use of such in the famous film.

The US edition of the album had a substitution of the band’s earlier song “Buffalo” from “Quirk Out” in the place of “Eager Bereaver.” I can sort of see why. “Buffalo” was a slurry funk that lyrically resembled Spinal Tap’s best song§, and featured flatulent fretless bass oozing out of the many spaces in the arangement as the guitar twangs gleefully bounced around like springs. Once heard, it’s etched into the mind for good. Especially if the listener made it to the psychotic middle eight where Lynch becomes unhinged raving about how much the fish and chips cost.

The mild-mannered intro of “Chaos” [an appropriate title if ever one heard one while listening to this album] was deceptively normal, proffering an Irish jig that only became something else once the creaking timbers of a ship began intruding on the reverie. The lyric was an alliterative dive into a seafaring bucket that painted the horrors of seafaring men with references to mutinies, keelhauling, and hangings. All delivered in a theatrical call and response manner by Lynch and the chorus of his massed voices. At the end it all resolved into several bars of happily ironic sea shanty before a steamboat’s engines brought it all to a quixotic conclusion. Mick Lynch had lobbied for this to be the first single, so it was. Not that it troubled the charts in the least.

Side two began with the most straightforward and musical song here. “Alcohol” was a sober look at the power of drink in a minor key setting that was nevertheless, the only 4/4 tempo on offer on this album. If there was a single song on “A Fierce Pancake” that could be covered by another band, this one was it. But there was another brush with more common sounds. “Doctor [A Visit To The]” began with a snaking surf rock beat and the peals of guitar riding that wave had the tone of Geordie Walker from Killing Joke. This gave the song a more rock-centric bearing thought the keyboards were as dissonant as ever with liquid reverb distorting them. This hemmed in the eccentricity somewhat to sound very Post-Punk.

Then the frantic screed of “Boggy Home” brought the evasive album to a nerve-wracking finish. Never has expressing the sentiment of returning home ever sounded so alarming and enervating. The tempo here was furious with Chris Salmon’s flanged picking upping the unsettling ante. I was amazed when the furiously paced song stopped for a split second cold for a man to mutter “mother of christ” under his breath. And pick right up a second later until the song ended with Mick Lynch screaming in possible agony as the song ended abruptly.

The production here was largely by Holger Hiller of Palais Schaumburg. Hugh Jones had produced the band’s successful indie mini-album, “Quirk Out” where the band had sold an impressive 50,000 copies. That Jones had produced Bauhaus had probably netted him the job. But bassist Kevin Hopper guided the band elsewhere for their full album. Intriguingly, sessions were held with NY electrodisco producer John Robie, who was behind some of the messier New Order single mixes. All that survived from those sessions was the top selling [#79] “Charlton Heston” single. This was both the band at their least off-putting as well as by far the strangest John Robie production ever. For a guy known for cut-up disco mixes for Cab Volt and New Order, “Charlton Heston” sounded close to folk music – save for the distinctive treefrog rhythms and happily daft lyrics.

Hopper has written that the band didn’t care for Hiller’s production but that was where Hopper’s head was at the time. He was already alienating his bandmates for caring more about samplers [as primitive as they were back then] than playing bass guitar so the producer of “Oben Im Eck” and his anti-rock tirades in the control room was balm for Hopper’s ears. Hiller did manage to help make an album that sounds often alien at times with noises of clattering sounds of destruction woven into the mix that I can’t tell are drums, bass, guitars, or samples.

I do have to say that after disappearing down the Stump rabbit hole for days at a time, none of it sounds particularly as alien to me as it did on the first run through. Given a few plays, my mind was responding to the thoroughly deconstructed music with some extreme time signatures as if it were just more pop music, so if anyone reading this has been quick to write Stump off, this is definitely music that needs a chance or two to begin emitting rewards. Sadly, the band were not on the receiving end of any rewards, having helmed a successful indie release only to relatively flop on their first major label outing. The band broke up afterward and save for odds and ends recorded afterward by one or more members included in their 2007 3xCD “The Complete Anthology” CD, that was all we got.

– 30 –

§ “Big Bottom,” of course!

Posted in Record Review | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Stump: “A Fierce Pancake” Is There When It’s Time For A Mental Palate Cleansing [part 1]

Chrysalis ‎| US | CD | 1988 | VK 41641

Stump: A Fierce Pancake US CD [1988]

  1. Living It Down
  2. In The Green
  3. Roll The Bodies Over
  4. Bone
  5. Buffalo
  6. Chaos
  7. Alcohol
  8. Charlton Heston
  9. Heartache
  10. Doctor (A Visit To The)
  11. A Fierce Pancake
  12. Boggy Home

I first heard Cork’s amazing Stump when The Tube was imported to a monthly MTV slot in  the mid-80s. The band performed a song entitled “Censorship Stripper” and I kept the tape. Interesting. I thought that was a great title for a song, but little did I know at the time that it was Channel Four nixing the actual title of the song; “Tupperware Stripper.” In England you couldn’t use a brand name in a song as constituted advertising. Of course, I only found this out ages later. I next encountered the band when I happened to catch their arresting video for the song “Charlton Heston” on MTV’s 120 Minutes.

I thought at the time that the song was highly eccentric, but that was before I heard the whole album! “Charlton Heston” was a deliberately odd song; built upon tree frog samples and a percussion block with a touch of jazzy bass for rhythm. It almost had the kind of skewed sound that “Time Me Kangaroo Down, Sport” had! Mick Lynch carried the vocals and his freeform lyrics adapted references from the film “The Ten Commandments” into a gleeful, if irreverent, rubber biscuit of a song. If that makes any sense…

The instrumentation was almost folk music with a thin, twangy hoedown guitar and light shadings of organ chords. On the face of it, it was not all that eccentric… except for that tree frog rhythm that the entire song was built upon. The Tim Pope directed video, was of course, ideally suited to the sounds. With Lynch emoting grandly, the rest of the band kept things toned down. Very down as I recall that some of the band members sported theatrical looking age makeup. Duran Duran, this most definitely was not. Still, the almost novelty aspect of the song warned me off as much as I was drawn to it. I can’t honestly say that I recall seeing it in stores of the time, but suffice to say that I did not run out and buy the album.

< insert twenty year span…>

It was in 2008 that I was in Victoria, British Columbia visiting with chasinvictoria and his wife. Of course, we went music shopping! It was at a great store called Lyle’s Place, that I ran across the CD of “A Fierce Pancake.” Naturally, I snapped it up without hesitation when I saw it in the used bins for C$10.00. What greeted me on playback was a lot more challenging than “Charlton Heston.”

The opening salvo, “Living It Down” dumped the listener in the deep end right up front so that there was no sidestepping the issue. This was almost berserk sounding music that featured the various instruments playing to their own, odd meters; coalescing in ways that made early DEVO really sound like The Rolling Stones in comparison. The guitar was twanged and plucked with what might have been odd, acrobatic fingering. Was that the alien uptwang of a musical saw I noticed? The notes sounded pitch bent as often as not. Stuttering rhythmic tattoos of the drums would intermittently interject sometimes motorik energy while around them and the vocals, the music bed sounded as if it had been ripped apart and stapled back together.

Bassist Kevin Hopper was also responsible for samples and much of this music was so dense with alien sounds that it formed a sonic miasma where little was discernible as one instrument or another. It could sound like a crate of furniture being dumped down a stairwell, in all honesty. That said, it did reach out and grab me by the lapels; stopping short of delivering a head-butt.

Next:  …Into The Rabbit Hole

Posted in Record Review | Tagged , , | 10 Comments

Wang Chung Cheekily Revisit Their Biggest Hit

As we mentioned last April, Wang Chung were the latest band to take the orchestral plunge that label August Day offered. The album has since been released in two formats, the ten track album and the boxed set version. Their new video above offers a cheeky update of their most iconic video. Were those masked string players a “Magical Mystery Tour” reference or did I just fall down The Rutles rabbit hole? As usual, we’re all about the boxed set of god version here @ PPM. It’s just what we do! Let’s have a look.

August Day ‎| UK | 6xCD | | 2019 | WCBOXSET1

Wang Chung: Orchesography Boxed Set – UK – 6xCD [2019]

Disc One – Orchesography

  1. Dance Hall Days
  2. Let’s Go
  3. Everybody Have Fun Tonight
  4. To Live And Die In LA
  5. Overwhelming Feeling
  6. Hypnotize Me
  7. Space Junk
  8. Electric Days
  9. The World In Which We Live
  10. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Reprise)

Disc Two – Orchesography (Orchestra And Vocal Versions)

  1. Hypnotize Me (Orchestra And Vocal Version)
  2. Let’s Go (Orchestra And Vocal Version)
  3. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Orchestra And Vocal Version)
  4. To Live And Die In LA (Orchestra And Vocal Version)
  5. Overwhelming Feeling (Orchestra And Vocal Version)
  6. Dance Hall Days (Orchestra And Vocal Version)
  7. Space Junk (Orchestra And Vocal Version)
  8. The World In Which We Live (Orchestra And Vocal Version)
  9. Electric Days (Orchestra And Vocal Version)
  10. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Reprise) (Orchestra And Vocal Version)

Disc Three – Full Orchestral Versions

  1. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Orcapella)
  2. Hypnotize Me (Orcapella)
  3. To Live And Die In LA (Orcapella)
  4. Dance Hall Days (Orcapella)
  5. Let’s Go (Orcapella)
  6. Overwhelming Feeling (Orcapella)
  7. Space Junk (Orcapella)
  8. Electric Days (Orcapella)
  9. The World In Which We Live (Orcapella)
  10. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Reprise) (Orcapella)

Disc Four – Remixes

  1. Hypnotize Me (One Era Remix) 6:05
  2. Let’s Go (Soda Pimps Remix) 4:42
  3. To Live And Die In LA (Skintologists Love And Dub In LA) 5:16
  4. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Reprise) (Aimes Remix) 5:22
  5. Dance Hall Days (Kim And Buran 80s Boogie Remix) 5:10
  6. The World In Which We Live (Sands Of Rio Remix) 6:11
  7. Overwhelming Feeling (Domestic Technology Spring And Bass Remix) 3:59
  8. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Beats Remix) 5:11
  9. Space Junk (Chris Coco Balearic Dub) 9:02
  10. Electric Days (Extended Mix) 5:10

Disc Five – Dance Hall Days CD5

  1. Dance Hall Days (Orchestral Version) 4:24
  2. Dance Hall Days (Daniele Baldelli & DJ Rocca Vocal Remix) 5:29
  3. Dance Hall Days (Kim & Buran Disco Mix) 6:15
  4. Dance Hall Days (Psychmagik Remix) 4:04
  5. Dance Hall Days (Orcapella) 4:06

Disc Six – Everybody Have Fun Tonight CD5

  1. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Orchestral Extended Remix) 8:40
  2. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Rikky Disco Club Edit) 3:46
  3. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Orchestral Version) 4:32
  4. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Beats Remix) 5:11
  5. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Rikky Disco Remix) 4:02
  6. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Diskette Remix) 3:59
  7. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Brassapella) 4:15
  8. Everybody Have Fun Tonight (Orchestral Extended Instrumental) 8:38

That’s a pretty interesting selection on the main album. They managed to squeak in a track [“Overwhelming Feeling”]  from their excellent last album “Tazer Up” that you basically had to buy from their merch table or iTunes! And the loose tracks “Space Junk” that they recorded for their 90s greatest hits album after being apart for some years. The track that is most interesting to me is “The World In Which We Live,” for my money the best song they ever wrote.  I have to say that with the full orchestra behind it, giving it a warm power alien to the more brittle mid-80s version, it has never sounded better. It’s actually spine tingling, now. If I miss on this box, then at the very least, I will be getting the CD of the “Orchesography” album.

Of course, the box has three discs only available in that configuration. The voice and orchestra disc [number two] is the one of most interest to me. If one is going to engage an orchestra, why not go all the way with it? There is also an orchestral instrumental disc and a disc of remixes. I have liked Kim + Buran and Skintologists mixes before, so they may be fun. Then they wrapped up the box with the two CD singles out commercially on DL/CD5 format. Topping it off with a artist-signed card insert, of course! What’s the outlay for six CDs? A decent $56.95, but these won’t last forever. Right now I don’t have the cash for this but we’ll see what happens down the line. Orders made here.

– 30 –

Posted in BSOG, Want List | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments

More Mott The Hoople On American Soil Again This Fall

Mott rocking in Cleveland earlier this year ©2019 Ms. Monk

Gloryoski! We just got the word that a second leg of Mott ’74 US tour dates has been announced for this fall with another ten dates taking the band down the East Coast, through the Southwest, and up the West Coast in October-November. As earlier, the emphasis will be on the 1974 setlist, with “The Hoople” album figuring prominently along with as many Mott classics as they can fit into a comfy 1:45 show. It’s a real treat having the band share this legacy of excellent rock music with us 45 years after their last US tour of 1974.

I tend to devalue “rock music,” but Ian Hunter has always been a writer at the head of the pack with both a surplus of empathy and an incisive artistic vision that has not dated. I was unexpectedly moved by the strains of hearing “All The Way To Memphis” live and that’s not even my favorite Mott song. Though Ian turned 80 on June 3rd, he’s still fully capable of holding a rock show in the palm of his hand. If you’ve ever enjoyed Mott The Hoople, by all means make the effort. I guarantee it won’t be happening again in another 45 years.

MOTT THE HOOPLE | Mott The Hoople ’74 | US Tour 2019 – Leg 2

21 Oct — Port Chester, NY @ Capitol Theatre
22 Oct — Washington DC @ Warner Theatre
24 Oct — Atlanta @ Coca Cola Roxy Theatre
26 Oct — Nashville @ War Memorial Auditorium
28 Oct — Dallas @ Majestic Theatre
29 Oct — Austin @ ACL Live at The Moody Theater
31 Oct — Scottsdale, AZ @ Talking Stick Resort Ballroom
01 Nov — Los Angeles @ Orpheum Theatre
03 Nov — Oakland @ Fox Theater
05 Nov — Portland @ Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
06 Nov — Seattle @ Moore Theatre

– 30 –

Posted in Tourdates | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Midge Ure Celebrates Over 40 Years Of Music With His Most Expansive Compilation Yet

Midge Ure can look back an a supremely varied career

Last Friday, I got separate comments from both negative1ne and Mr. Ware regarding the upcoming Midge Ure compilation due in early September. So I thank my commenters for keeping me on my toes. Because I don’t get out of the Record Cell all that much. But the world has a lot of Midge Ure compilations. Six, as Discogs tells it. I’ve already got two of them. What makes this one a bit different is that it dips its net into by far the widest waters of his  storied career yet. Taking us from 1978 and the Rich Kids album, up to the present. They could have thrown Slik on there as well, but there are limits to what may be considered right and proper. Readers of this blog may have more successfully argued for inclusion of the lost PVC2 single, but that’s probably mired down in rights issues. Lets see what Chrysalis has in store for us this time.

Chrysalis | UK | 2xCD+DVD | 2019

Midge Ure: Soundtrack 1978-2019 UK 2xCD+DVD [2019]

CD One

  1. Call of The Wild [7” Version]
  2. Answers To Nothing [7” Version]
  3. Dancing With Tears In My Eyes [7” Version] – Ultravox
  4. The Gift
  5. Wastelands [7” Version]
  6. After A Fashion [7” Version] – Midge Ure & Mick Karn
  7. Remembrance Day
  8. No Regrets [7” Version]
  9. Marching Men – Rich Kids
  10. If I Was [7” Version]
  11. Fade To Grey [2017 Version] – Band Electronica
  12. Dear God [7” Version]
  13. The Man Who Sold the World
  14. That Certain Smile [7” Version]
  15. Sister & Brother (feat. Kate Bush) [Alt. 7” Version]
  16. All In One Day [7” Version] (Ultravox)

CD Two

  1. Become
  2. Touching Hearts And Skies
  3. Glorious [2019 Single Mix] – Midge Ure & Rusty Egan
  4. Star Crossed
  5. You Move Me [Radio Edit]
  6. I Survived [Single Edit]
  7. Personal Heaven – Midge Ure & Glenn Gregory
  8. Beneath A Spielberg Sky [7” Version]
  9. Breathe [7” Version]
  10. Nevermore
  11. Cold, Cold Heart [7” Version]
  12. Let Me Go
  13. I See Hope (In The Morning Light) [7” Version]
  14. Let It Rise – Schiller feat. Midge Ure
  15. Dark Dark Night [2019 Remix] – Midge Ure feat. Moby
  16. Vienna [Orchestrated Version]

DVD – Promotional Videos +
[Audio Commentary on Promotional Videos by Midge Ure]

  1. Marching Men – Rich Kids
  2. No Regrets
  3. After A Fashion – Midge Ure & Mick Karn
  4. If I Was
  5. That Certain Smile
  6. Call of The Wild
  7. Answers To Nothing
  8. Dear God
  9. Cold Cold Heart
  10. I See Hope (In The Morning Light)
  11. Breathe
  12. You Move Me
  13. Beneath A Spielberg Sky
  14. Become
  15. Let It Rise [Live 2014] (Schiller feat. Midge Ure)
  16. Breathe [Orchestrated Version]
  17. Band Electronica [11mins]:
  18. Yellow Pearl/Passing Strangers [Live 2017]
  19. Fade To Grey [Live 2017]
  20. Orchestrated Promo Videos [11mins]
  21. Vienna [Orchestrated Version]
  22. Dancing With Tears In My Eyes [Orchestrated Version]
  23. A Portrait of [‘The Gift’ EPK 1985] [17mins]
  24. Answers: A Musical Biography [Documentary 1990] [49mins]
  25. Orchestrated [The Making of EPK] [9mins]

It looked like the cover was designed by the same person who did the recent Ultravox Extended compilation. The washed out swatch tints on white are not my go-to look but at least the photo of Midge is a recent portrait. It must be dispiriting for artists to see their old images of youth being used to sell their wares. The pair of CDs rehash most of the program familiar to other Ure comps, but feature a trio of cuts that were previously unreleased. It’s a familiar collection of 7″ mixes, a few deep cuts, and more interestingly, about a third of the program consists of loose tracks of the new millennium that would fall by the wayside if it were not for eventual compiling as in this case. Collaborative cuts and guest appearances. I’m most interested in the Glenn Gregory duet. I told Mr. Ure the last time I saw him that he really should think about an album together with his good friend.

It’s fairly expansive with Rich Kids getting added for the first time on a collection of his. No Ultravox this time, apart from his recent orchestrated version of “Vienna,” but I have to think that a chance here was lost that they did not include the hit 7″ remix of Phil Lynott’s excellent “Yellow Pearl.” I have the original LP and first 7″ remix on a Phil Lynott compilation, and I have the 12″ mix on vinyl, but the hit 7″ 2:53 version that had the great Midge Ure directed music video, was not used here. And I still need a copy. I get it. Phil Lynott sang the lead, but they put it on the 1993 “If I Was: The Best of Midge Ure + Ultravox” compilation. The playing and production on that cut was basically half of Visage with Rusty Egan and Billy Currie joining Ure on the awesome track. It was eventually used as the early 80s theme for Top Of The Pops. Here is a brief clip on the making of that iconic title sequence below as Midge Ure discusses the creation of the song and the designer of the titles talks about how it was done before After Effects in the gritty early 80s.

I have this PAL VHS but it’s compromised in terms of program

Speaking of video, the real Monk-Bait® in this package was the included DVD [NTSC], that with the exception of the already lamented “Yellow Pearl” video, stands to right some long standing wrongs on the Midge Ure music video front. With the exception of “Yellow Pearl,” it looks like any clip that should be here was included! I got the first video to feature Ure solo and Ultravox clips together when “If I Was: The Best of Midge Ure + Ultravox” was released [PAL VHS] in 1993.  Back then, it seemed that the stunning clip for “No Regrets” and the semi-legendary Egyptian travelogue that was “After A Fashion” could not be sourced for the production, so they were not included. I did have a copy of “No Regrets” from MTV. It’s on my videotape number 2 [out of about 700, eventually], recorded on ßeta in 1982 and I guarantee that it is unplayable currently without extensive time-base correction. Happily, those clips are on the new DVD and reason for me to buy, right there!

This 1990 biofilm neatly summarized Ure’s career

This collects all of Ure’s solo clips and has a generous program of bonus materials, including recent live footage, Electronic Press Kit videos, and something I’m most interested in seeing/hearing; Ure’s secondary audio commentary on every one of the music videos! I’ve only ever seen this done once before with the Kemp Brothers giving commentary on a Spandau Ballet concert video but as a music geek, this is what I want more of! Better yet, the 1990 home video of “Answers; A Music Biography” was also included! I have the JPN laserdisc of this title, and it’s been an enjoyable career summary to watch over the years. Taking the Midge Ure story from Slik [with clip excerpts] all the way through Rich Kids, Thin Lizzy, Visage, Ultravox, Band Aid, and his solo efforts. With friends and cohorts like Kenny Hyslop, Chris Cross, and Rusty Egan all chiming in. Any Midge Ure fan who has not seen this will love it.

So besides the well-considered DVD, the reason to buy this doubled when taking the asking price into consideration. The 2xCD+DVD will set you back $19.99. That’s easy to love. There is also a clear vinyl LP [750 made] with only ten tracks for $27.99, as well as various bundles for the fans so inclined. I can pass on the vinyl and t-shirts. But the CD/DVD package looks like something I want in house. Preorders can click here.

– 30 –

Posted in Core Collection, New Romantic, Scots Rock, Want List | Tagged , , , | 11 Comments

Scooped! When Personal CD Projects Get Superseded By Real Labels [part 4]

[…continued from last past]

So the brief here was to discuss CDs I have made through great effort for my simulated label, that eventually actually get made by real labels. This was a weird phenomenon where there are no easy attitudes to take. Even though i usually set my sights on a target that I feel is obscure, yet beloved enough to justify the investment of my time and energy, sometimes the marketplace shocks me.


BERLIN BLONDES – Berlin Blondes [REVO 046] 2009

I waited almost 20 years to buy this album. It took that long to find a [single] copy. Then I waited another ten years to play it! Sick, I know. I’m working on that. BONUS TRACKS: I had the 12″ single of “Framework” and included both sides. I knew that there were the “Science” and “Marseilles” singles as well, but didn’t want to wait any more years to hear this album on a CD! It was just early last year when I found a dealer in the US [?!] with both the “Marseilles” and “Science” 7″ singles, so I ordered them with an eye on remastering the album and adding more bonus tracks.

Strike Force Entertainment ‎| UK | CD | WSFE 074

No sooner had I received the two 7″ singles, than word came down that Strike Force Entertainment [a division of Cherry Red – shock!]  had already created the ultimate Berlin Blondes CD. With even the 7″ remix of “Framework” as well as the impossibly scarce Australian 7″ remix of “Science” that was beyond crazy hard to source. I tip my Aztec Energy Dome when perfection is achieved, so that 2018 Berlin Blondes CD is definitely on my dance card. one of these days, I suppose. I’m just glad that the Cherry red email I get monthly hipped me to this before I actually started on re-mastering my project! Bad enough that I bought records that I won’t need going forward, but the time spent is much more valuable.


DEVO – New Traditionalists Live In Sesattle [REVO 071] 2012

I was happy to hear the 2xLP of their 1981 tour that DEVO released for Record Store Day in 2012. For once, I ripped right into this and remastered the brand new LP to digital the same weekend that I had bought the LP. It was a decent pressing and the pops to remove were scant indeed. BONUS TRACKS: I had two DEVO flexi-discs in the Record Cell that, as far as I knew, had never moved beyond the flimsy sheets of plastic. The “Flimsy Wrap” disc came with the UK picture disc LP of “Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are DEVO and “Bushwacked” was bundled into an issue of Reflex Magazine, who tried to be the 90s equivalent of “Trouser Press.”

Booji Boy Records | US | CD | 2013 | BOOJI-001

As if to teach me a lesson about my hubris, the band themselves issued the album on CD the very next year! And they added two more bonus tracks to the playlist that were not on the cassette that they mastered the album from. “Beautiful World” and “Working In A Coal Mine” to complete the set list for that convert. I have several live albums by DEVO but this album period was a favorite of mine from them, so it’s likely that I will eventually get the manufactured CD of this. I may or may not keep the vinyl, depending on the resale value. I should keep any released by this seminal band, but I feel a little burned about buying the exclusive RSD release only to have a CD issued the following year!


EMI ‎| UK | CD | 2008 | 50999 2 13091 2 0

Sometimes, the wheel turns in the opposite direction!

I saw in 2008 that the two Virgin Records compilations issued in ’81/’82 buy Virgin Records at Ross Stapleton’s instigation, were given a CD release! These were filled with Virgin 12″ remixes from the label’s peak period! Some of the tracks on the CD came from the cassette versions of these albums, which had different material than I was familiar with from the LPs. It was beyond fantastic to finally have tracks like the godlike “Secret Life Of Arabia [dub mix]” by B.E.F./Billy MacKenzie on actual CD!! In all honesty, I shelled out for a mail order copy strictly on that cut alone. And yet…

VARIOUS – Methods Of Dance Vol. 1 [REVO 076] 2015

VARIOUS – Methods Of Dance Vol. 2 [REVO 077] 2015

These albums were so beloved by me that the notion of a single CD getting a smattering of all of the material across two LPs and cassettes, was only partial satisfaction where I was standing! I came to treasure these LPs in 1982 after chasinvictoria sent me highlights from Vol. 2 on a tape letter. I ran right out and hit the import cutout bins at Record City and purchased a copy of Vol. 1 for my own. Several years later, I finally managed to buy a copy of Vol. 2. So I got down to business making fully loaded CDs that contained all of the LP tracks and the CD tracks that differed! Because I had to.


There was one more instance where a CD I made was almost immediately issued for “real” by an actual label, but I’ve already blogged about that one here. So this thread is complete for another few years, at least!

– 30 –

Posted in Core Collection, Remastering, Scots Rock | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment