Pardon the technical difficulties- it seems as if both the Troubled Gardens and the Chrisma files were corrupt at some point. Troubled Gardens was reuploaded immediately on Friday, so track 1 (“Voice Carryovers”) should now be intact. The Chrisma discography issue has just been brought to my attention today, and it has been reuploaded. With 200+ downloads before a single complaint, I’m surprised no one mentioned it sooner!
Hopefully, the problem has been rectified- but do chime in and let me know if not.
Just found a sealed (!) copy of this killer 12” for super cheap, so figured I’d share it for you all. I can’t seem to find a ton of information about Troubled Gardens, but expect some bass-heavy and driving post-punk/coldwave sort of vibe here, hailing from the United States. Three of the songs here are vocal ragers, while the other three are more dub-inspired jams.
This 12” was released in 1985 by Fountain of Youth records, home to bands like The Crippled Pilgrims, Government Issue, and The Velvet Monkeys. This is one of their final releases. Here’s the information:
Troubled Gardens- Eden Revisited 12” 1. Voice Carryovers 2. Incredible Changing Dub 3. Silent City 4. Domination Dub 5. Hour Of The Sun 6. Spy Dub
Here’s one of two posts lined up to get you through the weekend. First, we have what I believe to be the complete discography of Italian band Chrisma, a synthpunk outfit active in the late 1970s. The band combined a Marlene Dietrich kind of vibe with krautrock, Chrome-esque guitar lines, disco rhythms, and primitive synthesizers for a futuristic and incredibly eclectic sound. Very ahead of their time, as far as I’m concerned, especially when you hear the drastic jump in styles between the first 7” and the debut LP.
The band takes its name from combining the first names of members Christina Moser and Maurizio Arcieri. Their earliest recordings were made in Vangelis’ home studio, which more than likely explains their futuristic sound. There’s even a rumor kicking around that Vangelis himself performed on Chinese Restaurant, but he is not listed in the album credits.
While the band was formed in Italy, they sang the majority of their songs in English, which helped earn the band a few fans stateside. You can still hear “Black Silk Stockings” (IMO, the band’s best track) in various clubs to date. In 1980, the band changed their name to Krisma and took a more synthpop turn, releasing five LPs and a slew of singles. Perhaps I’ll cover them someday in the future, but otherwise, here’s the full Chrisma output- two LPs and two 7” records. I didn’t include a few of the other 7”s, as the band would double up on album cuts for b-sides. Here’s the rundown:
Chrisma- Amore 7” (1976) 1. Amore 2. Sweet Baby Sue
Chrisma- Chinese Restaurant LP (1977) 1. Thank You 2. Black Silk Stocking 3. Lola 4. C-Rock 5. What For 6. Wanderlust 7. Lycee 8. Mandoia 9. Thank You
Chrisma- U 12” (1977) 1. U Part I 2. U Part II
Chrisma- Hibernation LP (1979) 1. Calling 2. Aurora B. 3. Rush ’79 4. Hibernated Nazi 5. Gott Gott Electron 6. We R. 7. So You Don’t 8. Lover 9. Vera Platz
In case you’re not sold on downloading this discography, peep a performance of “Black Silk Stocking/Lola” here, complete with a latter day interview with the band, for those fluent in Italian. Awesome.
If you dig on these records, feel free to purchase the excellent reissues from Medical Records!
Hey kids, I’m back! Got a few treats lined up over the next few days, but first we have the entire discography from UK band Home Service.
There’s an unfortunate discrepancy in the band’s discogs bio, which claims they have roots in the UK folk rock scene, but I believe there may have been more than one band masquerading with that name. However, a little digging has revealed that this particular project consists of only two members, David Motion and David Fraser. Many may be more familiar with David Motion’s work as both a film/jingle composer and the producer for Strawberry Switchblade from 1984-1991. Behind the scenes, he was responsible for some of the band’s best tracks, including “Since Yesterday” and “Little River.”
That said, Home Service’s own music was a bit of a curious anomaly in the new wave spectrum. The band mostly toys with a more quirky sound, seen more famously in bands like Units and Devo, but instead featuring a more detached and minimal approach. Their first two singles were released on Motion’s own Crystal Groove records, while their final 12” was picked up by Situation Two/Beggar’s Banquet. There’s a definite progression in style between the three singles (starting with more guitars and changing over to a mostly synth-based sound), all unified by the band’s unique voice. My favorite of the lot is easily “Only Men Fall In Love,” an uptempo track that you can still hear in the occasional club to date.
Systems of Romance was created in mid-2007 to serve as a dumping grounds for all great things coldwave, minimal synth, post-punk, synthpunk, industrial, synthpop, and various other combinations of these styles. Feel free to make requests, noodle around, and discuss all you like...
Otherwise, this blog is dedicated to showcasing material that has long since been out of print. If you are aware of any of these items being readily available from the artist or label, or take issue with these tracks being uploaded, please let me know so I can amend the post or remove the links.