Archive for May, 2013

Dropopop- Knuste Drømmer 7”

Posted in 1980s, 1982, coldwave, dropopop, goth, goth-rock, norweigan, post-punk with tags on May 23, 2013 by Frankie Teardrop

This 7” was a recent discovery (on Youtube of all places), and it’s as cold as the night is long.  This one-off single from Norway was released in 1982 and bears a strong resemblance to the usual suspects, including heavy influence by Joy Division and early Cure, as well as sharing similar sonic territory with bands like the Dutch Neon, The Opposition’s amazing first record, and the U 137 single I just posted a few days ago.

The A-side is a recent obsession of mine with heavy drums and haunting melodies, but the two tracks on the flip are equally commanding, dark and intense listens.  The band have three more other songs spread across two different cassette comps. but I haven’t heard them.

As always, little to be found about the band.  It appears they were from Skien, a large shipping town in the Southeast of Norway. A four piece by defintion, there were two additional musicians on this single, one playing string synths and the other credited with additional drum work.  Their label, Uncle Remus Records, also released a 7” and LP by fellow Norweigans band Øresus, which you can grab here if you want some excellent anthemic punk a la Generation X or the KBD comps.  But I know you guys, you like it cold and dark…

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Dropopop- Knuste Drømmer 7”
1. Knuste Drømmer
2. Frykt
3. Giftige Lepper

*download it here*

Luxus- Smiling Daughters 7”

Posted in 1980s, 1982, luxus, minimal, minimal synth, new wave, ohio, synth, US with tags on May 21, 2013 by Frankie Teardrop

Here’s a 7” recommended highly by a few collectors out there.  This one hails from 1982 and features a dirgey, drum heavy minimal synth sound very similar to Pink Industry (with vocals that sound like a pitched down/drugged out Bowie or John Foxx) on the a-side.  The B-side is a little more new wave-y by definition, but still a great listen.  Fans of Fallout Club may like this one as well.

This is the band’s second single on Stork Records.   I only have the A-side of that at 128, but if someone has this one and can rip both sides, feel free to chime in!  EDIT: Soul brotha Nick over at Crispy Nuggets just exhumed the first 7”, so head on over there to grab it.

Chuck from the band chimed in recently and had this to say about this excellent slice of synth goodness:

Recorded in a basement on a Dokordor Open Reel 4 track on the east side of Cleveland, Ohio. I know this because I played bass, some keys, and audio manipulations. Smiling Daughters took months to record, I’m So Confused(I’m A Mess) took a weekend.

You heard it from the source, kids!

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Luxus- Bent to Scale 7”
1. Smiling Daughters
2. I’m So Confused (I’m In A Mess)

*download it here*

U 137- Härifrån Till Evigheten 7”

Posted in 1980s, 1982, coldwave, post-punk, Stulna Begär, swedish, Total Musak, U 137 on May 10, 2013 by Frankie Teardrop

U 137 were a Swedish band, also featuring Mats Larsson (alias Tage Jesus) of Stulna Begär. They took their name from a Russian submarine that hit a rock in Swedish international waters in 1981, causing further speculation of Soviet influence on Sweden.  It’s a very interesting incident, which you can read more about here.

It seems like this was a collaborative project of three like-minded Swedish musicians, who swapped instruments for each track. Vocalist Michael Andersson would go on to form Sacrilege, a death/black metal band in the 90s.  Andersson and Anders Nilsson (aka Nisse) also released a few singles as Andra Sidan in the late 1980s.  Most notably, all three members were involved in Total Musak, with a similar cold/post-punk style and a female singer.   Total Musak further explored the Cold War sentiment covered here, and are just as good.  BONUS: you can hear all their recordings (though sadly only at 128 kbps) here.  Awesome! 

Not sure how many copies of this exist in total (rough guess is 500), but the first 300 copies were pressed on blue vinyl with no center label. This is the version I have.

Both sides here have something different to offer, likely a product of Larsson and Nilsson swapping string synth/drum duties for each track. Fans of bands like Peyr, Killing Joke, and the Red Rain Coat 7” will dig the energy of “En Som Faller,” (A Falling) while those who prefer the the cold Seventeen Seconds, Names/Factory sound should go nuts for “Baksidan Av Ditt Öga” (The Back of Your Eye).  There is rumored to be an English version of “En Som Faller” on a compilation, re-titled “Trip and Die” but not sure where you can hear that version.  For now, here’s a fresh rip of this excellent 7”! 

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U 137- Härifrån Till Evigheten 7”
1. Baksidan Av Ditt Öga
2. En Som Faller

*download it here*

Thanks to the excellent B-Sound website for filling in the gaps of this otherwise mysterious 7”!

Language From Memory- Fortune 7”

Posted in 1980s, 1981, language from memory, minimal synth, nick head, post-punk, uk on May 3, 2013 by Frankie Teardrop

England was ripe with excellent DIY post-punk and minimal synth gems, bands inspired by Factory Records, early Cure singles, etc.  Some of my favorite 7”s (Obscure By Degrees, Persons Unknown etc.) were birthed from this era with the same aesthetic.  So with that in mind, here’s another obscure gem from Towerbell Records, released in 1981.  This is the one and only single from Language From Memory, who disappeared into the ether soon after recording this 7”.  It’s a shame, as the a-side here truly kicks ass, one of the best undiscovered gems I’ve stumbled upon in recent times.  Incisive guitars, Sad Lovers and Giants-esque string synths, and catchy, fist-pumping hooks abound.  Power pop lovers will also enjoy the flip.

The band were from northern London, and played out quite often in the early 80s.  As for their disappearance, I believe they changed names and continued on together.  A fan who knew the band back then states that Nick Head played rhythm guitar on this single.  The name may be familiar to some, as he also acted as producer/engineer for KMFDM and Exit 13.

This single is also proof that not all obscurities are out of budget, as there are tons of copies out there to be had for relatively cheap, even by discogs standards.   Towerbell seemed to have some backing behind it, and a decently stacked roster, which was formed out of the disco era and included Shirley Bassey and Justin Hayward (Moody Blues) as well as a series of popular TV series compilations.  I haven’t heard of much else from the label, so perhaps this single is an anomaly, but either way, aspiring collectors should have no problem finding a copy for themselves…

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Language From Memory- Fortune 7”
1. Fortune
2. The Coat

*download it here*