Archive for January, 2012

The Alphabet- This Strange Love 7”

Posted in minimal synth, new wave, the alphabet, uk on January 30, 2012 by Frankie Teardrop

Here’s an extremely rare and rather unknown 7” from the UK. Judging from the cover, you’d expect some dark post-punk, aggro hardcore sort of thing, but instead we’re treated to two emotive minimal synth gems. I had to triple check the record to make sure it wasn’t some mixup!

I know very little about this one. The band hails from the UK and this is their only release, despite some misinformation over at their discogs page (the split listed with Invisible Hands is a newer release from the US, band with the same name, apparently). As for this release, it’s private press and doesn’t have a year listed on it anywhere, though I did come across 2 reduced price coupons for a hometown gig the band played back in the day, included in my copy. No year listed on those either. Perhaps someone out there knows the real story about this one- don’t be shy.

Otherwise, as I mentioned, there are two great minimal synth/new wave tracks here, the standout being the B-side, at least to my ears. A little acoustic guitar tossed in there, with some comparisons to Psychedelic Furs at times but with a ton of catchy electronics. Check it out:

The Alphabet- This Strange Love 7”
1. This Strange Love
2. The Handsome Beast

*download it here*

EDIT: I have some reason to believe that these guys are connected to the second lineup of Zero Le Creche, judging from their discogs entry. Seems like both Richard Thorne and vocalist Jamie Lord were involved with both projects, which sounds likely given the vocal similarties between the two. With that in mind, that probably puts this around 1983-4, from my humble guessing.

Taugadeildin- Taugadeildin 7” & Live Recordings

Posted in 1980s, 1981, icelandic, post-punk, q4u on January 24, 2012 by Frankie Teardrop

This post was brought to my attention by Josh of Dark Entries (if you don’t know the label yet, what the hell are you doing, man? Get over there and get shopping!). Thanks for the info and the head’s up, man!

Some amazingly catchy and dark Icelandic post-punk offered here. The band was apparently slated to appear in the infamous Rokk í Reykjavík documentary, but split prematurely. After the band split, Kommi joined an early incarnation of Q4U and soon brought Árni Daníel Júlíusson into the mix, who switched from bass to synth. The remaining lineup of Taugadeildin included Óskar Þórinsson and Egill Larússon on vocals, Þorsteinn Hallgrímsson on synth and Ódinn Guðbrandsson on guitar.

If you’ve got three grand or so lying around, you can get your very own copy of their self-titled 7”. Otherwise, the band has been kind enough to upload a rip to their site, at 128kpbs. You can find these tracks here as well, along with five live recordings!

Taugadeildin– Taugadeildin 7”
1. Her Longing
2. Taugadeildin
3. Guðir Hins Nýja Tíma
4. Hvítar Grafir

Live Recordings
1. Vetur
2. Sveitó
3. Space Queen
4. Íslandi allt
5. Stóð í glugga

*download it here*

You can also get a higher bitrate copy of “Her Longing” from Pheonix Hairpins post on The Northern Lights Playhouse LP, which featured the track as well.

Otherwise, stay tuned for some rather exciting Dark Entries releases to follow this year. Next up is Sic- Thought Noises and Buzz- See You Sioux, but you can also expect a Q4U release to appear on vinyl in the near future! For those who want more, there’s a new Q4U best of compilation out on Wave Records. Click here for more info!

BALTIMORE GRAB BAG: Immortal- Paradigm 12” & Mission- When Thunder Comes LP

Posted in 1980s, 1986, 1988, baltimore, goth, goth-rock, new wave, post-punk, synth, US on January 24, 2012 by Frankie Teardrop

I’ve been hearing some rumblings about Mediafire as well, and though various articles claim that Mediafire won’t be changing its service plan, I’ve heard some contradictory reports and have seen some accounts deleted over the past few days. So with that in mind, I’m going to post a few things over the next few days to get them off my chest just in case something goes down between now and then. Call me paranoid, but why hoard this stuff!

Here we have two post-punk records from Baltimore, Maryland.

First up, we have an immaculate rip of Immortal’s Paradigm 12” from 1988, previously featured on the always excellent Return to the East blog. Very Danse Society/Killing Joke-esque tribal post-punk here, with plenty of ghosty hooks that make it an essential listen. Not to be confused with the Dutch band of the same name.

Immortal- Paradigm 12” (1988)
1. Scale
2. Solvent
3. Print
4. Morning

Secondly, here’s an LP that’s flown under the radar over the years, and is still rather affordable for those interested in acquiring a copy. I recently included the title track from this LP on Systems of Romance vol. 5, plucked from the 8 Essential Attitudes compilation, but I’ve since tracked down the LP of the same name, and it’s more impressive than I expected. Almost a more new wave/pop take on Bauhaus, or if that analogy doesn’t work for you, a harder-hitting version of the VHF album. You can get their first LP here, if the link is still up and running. Not to be confused with the post-Sisters of Mercy band of the same name! Apparently, the band changed its name to When Thunder Comes to avoid confusion with those guys, and are still active to date, with a more heavy sound. You can read more about that here.

Mission- When Thunder Comes LP (1986)
1. When Thunder Comes
2. Broken Promises
3. Underground
4. River
5. Long Way Back
6. Lost Religion
7. The Bell Tolls
8. We Were There
9. This Train
10. Make The Man

*download BOTH records here*

Stay tuned for more over the next few days!

Various Artists- I’d Rather Be In Philadelphia LP

Posted in 1980s, 1983, bunnydrums, compilations, new wave, philadelphia, post-punk, pretty poison, synth on January 23, 2012 by Frankie Teardrop

Well, with megaupload’s recent demise, it’s no shock that the blog world is currently reeling. My condolences to those whose hard work was flushed down the drain in one fell swoop. Not sure if mediafire, my preferred hosting of choice, will be targeted in the near future, but with this in mind, I’d say now’s a good time to catch up on the archives of this blog and others, while the getting’s good! Also, lemme know if any of the zshare archives are outdated, and I’ll reupload as I can. I’d like to keep a tight ship here for as long as possible.

That said, I’m sure you’ve all noticed that there’s been some overlap posts here as of late. While I’m still dead set on unearthing long lost gems, the wantlist dwindles by the day. With that in mind, I’ve been acquiring copies of some all time favorites for the DJ bag and re-ripping them at solid bitrates and de-popping them as best as I can before playing them out. I’ve also passed a few clean rips over to A Viable Commercial (1, 2, and 3) and more shall be appearing throughout the blogosphere. I’ve also been revisiting some of my own posts from the past, the most recent being the first Sanity Plexus 12”, which I’ve cleaned up to the best of my ability (it’s still a rather poor pressing, so there’s only so much one can do). I’ll update at the end of new posts with any archival developments in lieu of making a new post. Don’t get me wrong, new and unheard material will still appear here as I get my hands on it, but I hope you guys enjoy the higher fidelity posts as well.

Ok, so all that aside, here’s another record that’s been shared before, though it appears to be offline at the moment. Here we have an elusive comp from 1983, featuring artists the Philadelphia area. Fantod’s original post hints at a poor quality pressing of this record, and while I had in my hands what appeared to be a near-mint copy, the same flaws existed. There’s a long-standing crackle throughout the entire record, very difficult to remove through standard means. I tried noise removal as per usual, but I was left with little audio to work with on the second track, even at lower settings, so I kept an even hand and did my best. I did go through and attempt a click-by-click removal, but I was only able to remove the major and isolated offenses before losing my mind completely. Also, it seems like some of the tracks were poorly recorded to begin with, most noticeable on the Sensory Fix track, which sounds foggy right off the needle.

Despite these flaws, this record is still surprisingly rare and worth checking out, as it features early and exclusive contributions from some of Philly’s finest. Pretty Poison appears here, in their earlier and more abrasive incarnation, and offer one of the best tracks on the comp. There’s also a transitional Book of Love track about dye, recorded soon after their stint as Head Cheese. It’s a curious track, nowhere near the synthpop smash of their debut LP, but more in line with the no wave-influenced Jungle Jam tracks. Another standout is Bunnydrums, the psychedelic post-punk band that’s been covered many times in the past, and who I believe are still active to date. While “Sleeping” also appeared on the PKD LP (same version for both releases), it’s one of their finest tracks. We also have a cut from Executive Slacks, who I presume need no introduction.

As with any compilation, there are a few tracks that aren’t too interesting to me, but your mileage may vary. For me, the real diamond on this comp. is the smoldering Girls Downstairs cut, an unsuspectingly nightmarish track with female vocals and steady percussion. Sadly, it appears to be the only thing they ever recorded. Story of my life.

I feel like I had more to say about this one, but since this is likely my longest post to date (tl;dr), I’ll end it here and offer up the tunes for anyone still with me. Here’s the info for this comp:

Various Artists- I’d Rather Be In Philadelphia LP
1. Bunnydrums- Sleeping
2. Pretty Poison- Secrets
3. Sensory Fix- Last Match
4. Impossible Years- Flower Girl
5. Mother May I- When Children Play
6. Book of Love- Henna
7. Red Buckets- Something Else Again
8. Stickmen- Duraflame Dog
9. Girls Downstairs- Steam Rises Off the Jungle Floor
10. Executive Slacks- Sexual Witchcraft

*download it here*

Kevin O’Neill- Omega 8 & A Hostage to Fortune CD-Rs

Posted in 1980s, 1990s, ambient, dark ambient, kevin o'neill, remote viewing, synth, uk on January 18, 2012 by Frankie Teardrop

Here’s some goodies from the Remote Viewing files. Here we have two CD-Rs from Kevin O’Neill, one of the more prolific artists from the compilation. Kevin was also the man behind Network 23, the label who released both volumes of Remote Viewing. I’ll let John Costello’s own words tell a bit of Kevin’s story:

Kevin founded N23 and as well as creating his own music he worked hard to promote independent electronic music in the UK. He played live at the UK Electronica in London in 1988 and organised this successful concert in his home city on March 18th the following year. The full billing was Kevin, Steve & Linda Hillman, myself and Greg Truckell. I’ll always be grateful to Kevin for liking my music enough to include it, as it’s a bit different from most synthambient and sequencer/progressive N23 artists.

Fans of the Remote Viewing cassette, Costello, and various synth-heavy ambient acts (Deca, Tangerine Dream, Carl Matthews, Black Tape For a Blue Girl, Klaus Schulze, Coil etc.) will certainly find lots and lots to love on these two CD-Rs, which were graciously donated by Kevin. Omega 8 is a collection of tracks from the 1988 Omega cassette, with the final two tracks missing. A bonus track, “Islands Suite” appears in its stead. “Islands Suite” originally appeared on the Islands K7, while an edited version appears on Remote Viewing Volume 1, released in 1986. The second CD-R collects all tracks from 1993′s A Hostage of Fortune K7, though the title track appears in edited form from its cassette counterpart.

All in all, there’s roughly an hour and a half’s worth of incredible ambient music contained within! Here’s the info:

Kevin O’Neill- Omega 8 CD-R
1. Another Morning
2. Eye Of The Storm
3. Guernica
4. Blodwen (The White Rose)
5. Speaker
6. Prometheus
7. Islands Suite

Kevin O’Neill- A Hostage to Fortune CD-R
1. Indefinite Divisibility
2. P-M H
3. Piano No. 4
4. Flutecho
5. Tetapi Itu Kesenian (For Leif & Rukmini)
6. Reminiscence (For Michael Neil)
7. Ghosts
8. The Massing Of The Shades (For Norman Jope)
9. A Hostage To Fortune Pts 3-6

*download both here*

Many thanks to Kevin for his blessing in posting these! I’ll leave you with some amazing video footage of Kevin’s performance of “Island Sweet,” sourced from the infamous Network 23 concert in Cardiff, 1989. Enjoy!

Epitaphe- Syndrome 12”

Posted in 1980s, 1983, coldwave, epitaphe, goth, goth-rock, norma loy, post-punk, resistance on January 10, 2012 by Frankie Teardrop

You may have seen this one posted in the past, but I’ve just purchased a great sounding copy and felt the need to re-rip it at 320kpbs for everyone’s listening pleasure.

This limited edition, 1983 mini-LP is a true coldwave masterpiece, brought to you by members of Norma Loy and Résistance, you can expect the same sort of brilliance here over the course of six tracks. My favorite is “La Joie,” but there really isn’t a weak track to be found on this 12”.

Obviously for fans of the French coldwave sound, as well as of early Modern English, Seventeen Seconds, Joy Division, etc. But why are you still reading this? Do yourself a favor and grab this one now now NOW!

Epitaphe- Syndrome 12”
1. L’Ecume De Mes Regrets
2. In The Castle
3. La Joie
4. Appear
5. Afraid To Die
6. Out Of Time

*download it here*

Plann- Elektra Elektra LP

Posted in 1980s, 1982, de press, holy toy, minimal synth, norweigan, plann, post-punk, synthpop on January 3, 2012 by Frankie Teardrop

Let’s kick off this year right, with a generous donation of a rare Norweigan synth pop record from 1982 from the duo of Kikkan Fossum and Lillie-Ane. The former’s credentials include The Cut, who appear on the excellent Maskindans compilation as well as on A Viable Commercial.

While these two are credited as the brainchildren of the band (errr, though I’m not sure who the third guy on the album cover is), there were quite a few notable (and also several unknown) contributors credited on the LP. Arne Lund of The Cut was one of three drummers who contributed to the LP, while Andrej Dziubek Nebb (De Press, Holy Toy) provides backing vocals on a few of the tracks. There were also three bassists and several other backing vocalists on the LP. In short, it seems like this two piece had a lot of help from their friends, and almost feels like a Norweigan supergroup of sorts.

The plethora of contributors on this LP leads to a diverse collection of songs, held together by the duo’s musical vision. This is one of the more interesting (and therefore, more satisfying) synth-based LPs I’ve heard in some time, where every track sounds different, yet all are enjoyable. Try it on for size and see for yourself:

Plann- Elektra Elektra LP
1. Cherokee
2. Lillie
3. Cabriolet
4. Er Virkelighet Drøm
5. Cûda Barracûda
6. Liv Liv
7. Sûg
8. Ato Signal
9. Hvit Løgn
10. Til Evig Tid

*download it here*