Ear Trumpet – Bring on the Dirt LP

Back in the early pandemic days, I (and a few pals) started going through our collections with the sole intention of re-digitizing and improving digital copies of our records across the board. So many LPs and singles that exist out there ripped poorly with low bit rates, from back in the long long ago, when digital space was a premium and hearing the record by any means necessary was the one true goal. While we all can be grateful that those rips existed back then to give us a taste of unheard pleasures, now’s the time to improve things. You’ve likely seen me updating posts here and there over the last few years, and I’ve been doing a lot of work behind the scenes as well,  spending most of my free time (that isn’t taken up with child care, band responsibilities, and horror movies), sifting through gigabytes and gigabytes of rare records, meticulously separating tracks, de-clicking with the most careful of hands, ensuring that all the music remains intact at the best quality possible. It’s been a labor of love, and I probably have enough posts to keep me going another decade or two. That all said (getting to the damn point), back in 2020, someone asked me to make a new rip of this classic experimental record from UK project Ear Trumpet, and while I can’t remember who asked for it at this point, this post is for you…

Ear Trumpet were a supergroup of sorts, if one could call it that… Aside from two fellows named Neil and Gary, some of the more famliar players include The Banshees/The Glove’s Steve Severin (on organs/synths), Wire/Cupol/Dome’s Bruce Gilbert on guitar, and latter day Buzzcocks/Lack of Knowledge’s Tony Barber on bass, all of which lend their immense talents and knack for experimentation to this LP. This is their lone LP, released in 1987… and while on paper it could easily sound like a goth/punk hybrid by the numbers with these alumni on board (and I’d be perfectly happy with that, mind you), the results are actually quite unique – ethereal in spots, experimental art rock in others, with a solid post-punk bedrock coursing through its veins. I feel like this album is rather underrated in circles – not discussed nearly as much as other Banshees or Wire offshoots, to my knowledge. A blog back in 2008 spoke about it with similar affinity, but otherwise, I don’t see it discussed as much in music groups, forums, etc.

The project released a follow up in 1987, a three-track 12” that continues the story a bit, though I don’t believe Gilbert or Barber performed on that release. It’s been a minute since I’ve listened to the 12”, but I recall it being much heavier/less subtle and nuanced than the LP, hitting more like a Loop/Swans kind of thing. While I like those bands quite a bit, the second release doesn’t hit me quite the same way as the LP, but your mileage of course, may vary.

All that said, here’s the info for the debut LP.

Ear Trumpet – Bring on the Dirt LP
1. Acts Of Devotion
2. Whack
3. Ask My Mother
4. You Go On There
5. The Smell You Get From Old Books
6. Fall Back In Houses
7. No Spill Over
8. Bring On The Dirt
9. Fetch My Bag
10. Last Bus Fever

*download it here*

2 Responses to “Ear Trumpet – Bring on the Dirt LP”

  1. This is a great post. Never knew about it and the line up is quite special.
    Big thanks Frankie!!!

  2. robin0112358 Says:

    I have never owned this album, so if anyone can help me with the designer of the beautiful cover, I would be appreciative.

    I can donate the fact that Neil M. is Neil Mouat who was an artist and poet. I believe that Ear|Trumpet was his project.

    https://www.discogs.com/artist/314082-Moet-The-Poet

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