Archive for the post-punk Category

The Bell Jar- Beginnings of Ends 12”

Posted in 1980s, 1986, indie, post-punk, US on September 16, 2016 by Frankie Teardrop

I have this ritual where I occasionally parse my shelves and purge a dozen or so records every now and then to make room for all the new things coming in. Quality over quantity in a city where every square foot is key. Sometimes, I’ve purged records I’ve re-bought later down the line, misjudging them, or changing my mind in a very expensive manner. In this case, this one made the latest pile of purges, but after listening one last time, I realized it’s actually better than I remembered!

That all said, this is the first 12” from The Bell Jar, a post-punk/indie band based from California who take their name from the Sylvia Plath novel. This record was released in 1986 on Out There Records, with a full length LP appearing a year later. I haven’t heard that one just yet. As for the sound, this one definitely fits in with a lot of the C86 things happening at the time, falling right in line with the Mighty Lemon Drops (especially in the vocals), Echo and the Bunnymen, Railyway Children, Icicle Works, etc. It also reminds me of a less bleak version of the Black Sea LP. I could do without the Dylan-esque “Kid Talk,” but “Walking Through Fire” is wonderful, and the prominent synths in “Where To From Here” are equally excellent.

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1. Walking Through The Fire
2. Kid Talk
3. Where To From Here
4. Jimmy’s Cold December
5. Water

*download it here*

The Lucy Show- Extended Play 12”

Posted in 12'', 1980s, 1984, canadian, new wave, post-punk, the lucy show on August 26, 2016 by Frankie Teardrop

I’ve covered The Lucy Show here a few times before, and even after all these years, they remain an absolute favorite of the era, a band whose records I cherish deeply and would never leave home without. They’ve never been the rarest band on these pages, with most of their releases in mass production and easily found in used bins across the states, but it’s never really about the rareness, is it? Note for note, The Lucy Show deliver, and this EP is of no exception, featuring three exclusive tracks and what appears to be a slightly different and darker version of the “Resistance,” one of many highlights from their debut album Undone.

It’s hard to tell without exact release dates, but this EP appears to predate both the Electric Dreams 7” as well as their first LP, which might explain the more club-friendly sound from Leonardo Da Vinci still intact here. The lead-off track is a forever favorite, and appears in nearly all my post-punk focused DJ sets these days, though it’s always hard to pick just one from this band.

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The Lucy Show- Extended Play 12”
1. The Price of Love
2. Resistance
3. See It Goes
4. Is It

*download it here*

The Blessed- Taboo 12”

Posted in 1980s, 1985, goth, post-punk, the blessed, US on August 23, 2016 by Frankie Teardrop

I was out last night with a few pals, digging through my favorite NYC record store bin when I came across this one. At first glance, the cover piqued my interest, and after a ten-second preview at the listening station (I am often quick to judge), I was sold. This particular slice of wax is the second release from The Blessed, a US-based post-punk band. Their first 7”, a more traditional punk affair, fetches obscene prices, but this particular record can be found for just a few bucks. The stylistic change makes sense given the gap between releases (six years), as this record definitely adds a darker approach to an already incisive guitar palate.

As for the songs- I could do without the first track’s lyrics and vocal melodies (though I do enjoy the prominent synth stabs), but the following tracks definitely have a fair amount of bite to them, a welcome addition to the mid-80s goth/post-punk cannon. Hope you enjoy!

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The Blessed- Taboo 12”
1. Rubbernecking
2. Rags to Riches
3. Potter’s Field

*download it here*

Various Artists- Unexpected Silenzio 12”

Posted in 12'', 1980s, 1986, ambient, canadian, compilations, dark ambient, moonlight society, odds, post-punk, silent sound on August 8, 2016 by Frankie Teardrop

I picked up this particular 12” on a more recent carpet bombing of a NYC shop, and I’ve been meaning to share it for some time. Released in Canada on Bad Zoo Records in 1986, this collection features three vastly different bands and two styles that don’t seem to go together on paper, but make for a very enjoyable compilation EP.

I’m particularly wild about the first track, “People Walk on By” from Moonlight Society, a band who dominates the a-side with their Chameleons-inspired post-punk. Lots of guitar interplay with some chirpy synths for good measure across both tracks. I really wish they had more songs out there, because I’m a sucker for this kind of sound, through and through. Meanwhile, the flip features two dark ambient tracks by two separate bands, both of which are sprawling in comparison to the a-side’s immediacy. Both are excellent, however, and like the flip, neither band was heard from again, though Silent Sound features a synth credit from David Kristian, who joined Psyche a few years later…

All in all, an excellent, if unknown little compilation that’s still rather cheap to pick up (for the time being, ha ha!). Hope you enjoy!

unexpected

Various Artists- Unexpected Silenzio 12”
1. Moonlight Society- People Walk On By
2. Moonlight Society- I’ll Live
3. Silent Sound- Skin of Sorrow, Soul Without End
4. Odds- Hyaloide Hypercycle

*download it here*

One Life- The Crowning 12”

Posted in 12'', 1980s, 1988, boston, goth, goth-rock, post-punk, US on June 2, 2016 by Frankie Teardrop

Quick and dirty- both this post and the sound of this record. Released on Beautiful Sounds and based in the Boston area, One Life put out but one 12” of raw, incisive post-punk in 1988, and were never heard from again. Definitely recommended for fans of the first Choir Invisible LP, The Blessing, and The Bolshoi. As for larger touchstones, some major Psychedelic Furs overtones- as if Richard Butler lived in LA in 1985 as far as the title track is concerned. Funny though, as the vocals are a bit less monotone on the other tracks.

Your mileage may vary with the extended remix that kicks off this 12”, but otherwise, I can’t recommend this one enough! Many thanks to Goutroy and Glenn for turning me on to this one.

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One Life- The Crowning 12”
1. The Crowning (Extended Mix)
2. The Crowning
3. Never Sleep Again
4. Fate
5. Holy Grace

*download it here*

Various Artists- 041 Compilation K7

Posted in 1980s, 1989, goth, goth-rock, post-punk, punk, yugoslavian on March 16, 2016 by Frankie Teardrop

Wow, been a spot of time, ladies and gents. Sorry about that! To make up for it, here’s an incredibly obscure compilation I just recently picked up on cassette, featuring a slew of European post-punk and goth tracks. The tape was released in 1989 by FV Založba, the Yugoslavian label run by members of Borghesia. While there are a handful of excellent exclusive releases (case in point), the label often released unofficial copies of alternative classics, including Sonic Youth, Pere Ubu, Nick Cave, and the like.

That all said, there’s plenty to love on this compilation. Nearly every track is a winner, from the opening cover of The Beatles’ “The Fool On the Hill” by Endymion, Lepra’s “Soba” (which reminds me quite a bit of Paralisis Permanente), and several excellent contributions from the female fronted Nemesis, who run the gamut from trashy post-punk and indie across four tracks. There isn’t a slew of information about any of these bands, as none of them survived the late 80s underground.

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Various Artists- 041 Compilation
1. Endymion- The Fool On the Hill
2. Nemesis- Silent War
3. Nemesis- Stranger
4. Nezaboravan San O…- Hladni Simboli
5. Lepra- Soba
6. Jozo Oko Gospa- Reci Omm
7. Lepra- Bol
8. Nemesis- Icarus
9. Nemesis- The Autumn Song

*download it here*

Pop Stress- So Good To Be In Love 7”

Posted in 1980s, 1981, canadian, montreal, pop stress, post-punk on November 19, 2015 by Frankie Teardrop

Here’s an excellent two track 7” from Montreal’s Pop Stress, a generous gift from Megon at Only Death Is Fatal. This single, the only release by Pop Stress, was released in 1981 on Micatube Records. At first glance, the band seems heavily inspired by Magazine’s first two pioneering records. The A-side is a nervous pop song with bouncy organ synths and rock ‘n’ roll rhythms. It’s perfectly enjoyable in its own right, but the real gem here is the flip; a dark, tom-heavy, claustrophobic number that really gets under my skin. The song was allegedly inspired by Janov’s Primal Scream.

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Pop Stress- So Good To Be In Love 7”.
1. So Good To Be In Love
2. Neurotic

*download it here*

It seems like I’m not the only one who prefers the b-side for this one, as a video for “Neurotic” was shot prior to the single’s release and premiered on a Canadian music program, with a short interview with the band’s vocalist at the end. Check it here:

Breathless- Waterland 7”

Posted in 1980s, 1984, breathless, dreampop, post-punk, uk on October 9, 2015 by Frankie Teardrop

We’ve discussed UK post-punk band Breathless here before in the past, and I can’t overstate their importance enough. They are, by and far, one of my all-time favorite bands- such beauty, brilliant songs, and one of the best male vocalists of all time. Also, unlike most of our artists here, they are still active, releasing the incredible Green to Blue LP in 2012.

Most of their catalog has since been reissued digitally for download/streaming. That said, a few of their earliest singles have yet to be compiled, perhaps a tape sourcing issue or oversight. Most absent from their digital catalog (outside of the cathartic “Bad Blood”) is their debut 7”, Waterland from 1984. With that in mind, I’ve finally picked up a copy and made a passable rip for you all to enjoy. A few words of warning- the pressing on this 7” was a bit dodgy, but a little cleanup went a long way with this one. More importantly, while the ingredients that make them such a compelling band are still on display here, these two tracks are more primitive- darker, heavier, much more intense than some of the material that would follow. There is heavy dub-inspired bass and buzzy synths on the excellent “Second Heaven”- the real standout for me on this single, though the powerful ending of “Waterland” is nothing to shake a stick at either. Either way, perfect sounds to kick off your Autumn. Enjoy!

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Breathless- Waterland 7”
1. Waterland
2. Second Heaven

*download it here*

PS- be sure to check out the lyrics for these tracks on the Tenor Vossa website!

Various Artists- Systems of Romance Vol. 7 & 8

Posted in 1980s, coldwave, compilations, Intro, mélopée, New deutsche welle, new wave, post-punk, synth, synthpop, systems of romance, uk, various artists, Vibø, wave on September 1, 2015 by Frankie Teardrop

I’ve been talking a big game about this Various Artists compilation series for a long time. So many allusions to the next installment of loose tracks have been made over the past few years, always saying the same thing. Stay tuned, etc. Well, it just occurred to me that it’s been THREE (3) years since the last installment, which is just pathetic on my part. That said, in order to atone for these missed opportunities and empty promises, I’ve assembled not ONE, but TWO compilations, just like the old days. Some of these tracks were passed on by friends and allies of the blog, others by band members themselves, and as always, quite a few come from the record shelves. Little writeups to follow below, but for now, let’s get to the tracklisting, shall we?

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Various Artists- Systems of Romance Vol. 7
1. Blood Brothers- Beyond The Nightmare
2. Unfamiliar Skies- Loveland
3. I Wish- The Name
4. 4711- New Holland
5. Glass Lady- Glass Lady
6. Lovers- Siam
7. Forever Till Never- When Kids Are Alone
8. Dancing On Your Own- Martin & Martin
9. Loss- Camouflage
10. Saison Fleurie- Cello
11. The Haunting Moon- Lyon in Winter
12. ふり返った男- Imitation Brain
13. Epics- Moravagine
14. Deutschland Brennt- D.U.R.
15. GG Man- Underjordiska Lyxorkestern
16. Pathetical Twat- Weaveworld
17. Ansassa- Tiistai
18. Symétrie (Live)- Pro Memoria
19. Zondagsplicht- Vibø
20. Pour Everyone- Irrelevant

sor8

Various Artists- Systems of Romance Vol. 8
1. The Tribute- Christophe Grelier
2. Sisters- Carter Burwell
3. Dancing to Kill- Almost Alone
4. Curtain of Love- Ce Soir
5. Ultraviolet- Fade to Black
6. L’Arbre- Mélopée
7. Frozen (Demo)- Yvonne
8. Uomini di Vetro- Sirtaki
9. Darkness- A Distant Echo
10. Clever Dancers- Paul Piacentini
11. Grey Day- Nick Haward
12. Nuclear Car- Chapter 13
13. Tornado- The Blue Law
14. In Your Window- Indians Fall In Love
15. Korea- European Toys
16. Grind- October Game
17. Stormy Weather- Systems of Romance
18. Apynee- Laughing Out Loud
19. Disunion- Baby Hotel Hunger
20. Is This the End?- Avo-8

*download both compilations here*

Vol. 7 credits:
1. French band, released in the mid 90s, early 2000s. Also known as Beyond the Nightmare About Claudia.
2. Rare compilation appearance from these US-based synthpop greats, responsible for this trashy 12”. This track was released in 1993 on the American Independence- The New York Underground compilation. They were never heard from again.
3. Another track with virtually no information to be found out in the ether. Welcoming any tips on this one!
4. Incredible post-punk with cold synths from the Netherlands. They have a wealth of unreleased material, all available on Youtube.
5. Sleazy italo disco vibes from the UK, This is their lone single, the flip being an instrumental dub version.
6. Not related to the Israeli band of the same name, but instead the second project from Jacqui Brookes, aka Shox and Intro, respectively. This is the b-side of their Catrix 7”, a much better song than the intended single.
7. The a-side from a killer post-punk/wave 7” from the US, released in 1985.
8. An old Wierd party favorite, donated by a friend some time ago. Has seen many a play on the NYC dancefloors, but I’ll be damned if I can tell you anything about this otherwise italo/synthpop smash.
9. Not related to the German synthpop titans, but instead the centerpiece of this Swedish wave band’s second record, released in 1986.
10. Neoclassical darkwave vibes from Portugal, released the mid-90s. This track hails from their third record.
11. Gloomy new wave track from a lone US 12”, released in 1986.
12. Japanese a-side, also from 1986.
13. Early Martial Canterel demo, recorded under the Moravagine alias and released on a 6 track cd-r of similarly early demos.
14. The A-side from a 1982 NDW single, released on Zenzor.
15. The standout track from this Swedish band’s lone LP from 1982. The rest of the album is a mixed bag of new wave/prog tracks, but this one is a cold gem.
16. Four piece UK band featuring frequent members and collaborators of The Chameleons, The Sun & The Moon, Black Swan Lane, etc. Features the same trademark sound as all three of these bands. Also appears in demo form under the name Music For Aborigines.
17. Standout track from this Finnish band’s debut LP, released in 1987.
18. Unreleased live track from this otherwise amazing French coldwave project, with heavy similarities to Cocteau Twins. Get their first demo tape here.
19. Unreleased demo track from these Belgian darkwave greats, whose 12” appears on these back pages as well.
20. Unreleased demo from Philippe Planchon’s post-Asylum Party project.

Vol. 8 credits:
1. Neoclassical track from the mid-90s, released on the Cantara I compilation. Christophe was mostly active in No Words.
2. Plucked from the Psycho 3 soundtrack and featuring Stanton Miranda, yet another killer collaboration between the pair that brought you Thick Pigeon and the killer Wheels Over Indian Trails 12” on Factory Benelux. This is Carter’s first soundtrack work, a world where he is still active today.
3. Unreleased demo from this UK synthpop duo.
4. Flip side from a Scandanavian synthpop single from 1983. This is the first of three singles by Ce Soir. The A-side is nice, but this is the real standout of the two.
5. Lone compilation appearance from these US goth greats. It’s by far my favorite track of theirs, with a menacing edge and a slightly questionable organ line. Released on an otherwise mixed bag compilation. Miller High Life wave?
6. Centerpiece of this French coldwave band’s CD release from 1995. Get their earlier material here.
7. Demo track from mid-90s Sweden.
8. I couldn’t tell you a thing about this one!
9. The only released track from this Belgian synth band, released on the Blitz Pop 2 compilation in 1983.
10. Standout from the 1985 Out of the Box LP, recorded in one continuous take. Another Wierd party favorite.
11. The a-side from an extremely rare UK minimal synth single, released in 1983.
12. The b-side from a US-based 7” from 1982.
13. Gloomy, standout new wave track from a lone US 12”, released in 1988. If I recall, this is the only track that sounds anything like this.
14. Unreleased track from this UK-based post-punk/goth band, originally featured on the band’s Myspace page. This one goes out to Michael B. Wood from Return of the East, who passed away recently, but not before sharing this obscure band with the world.
15. Title track from this rickety UK post-punk band’s second release from 1984.
16. Probably the most well-known band on here, if only because it features a young, pre-Nettwerk Sarah McLachlan on vocals. Originally released in 1986 on the Out of the Fog (The Halifax Underground 1986) compilation.
17. US-based 12”, named after this blog just kidding, but still a nice slice of excellent new wave from 1983.
18. Another one I know virtually nothing about, and welcome any further information!
19. AKA Hotel Hunger, a Danish post-punk band. This track hails from their first 12”, released in 1986.
20. UK-based indie-rock/pop in the style of Shop Assistants, Flying Nun records, etc. This is the title track from their 1987 12” of the same name. Thanks to Goutroy for passing on an extra copy!

Various Artists- 13 CD & L’Appel de la Muse LP

Posted in asylum party, coldwave, compilations, ellysgarden, france, french, goth, goth-rock, little nemo, lively art, post-punk on May 13, 2015 by Frankie Teardrop

Here’s a two for Tuesday post- two indispensable French compilations that you may have seen around before over the years, but both of these may serve as upgraded versions of what’s available in the ether.

Let’s start with 13, a near-perfect sampler of the Lively Art roster released in 1990, just as the label was hitting its peak. Just one glance at the artists gives the impression that Lively Art was truly on par with Factory Records, if nowhere near as well known outside of France and Belgium. It’s easy to forget that And Also the Trees had several releases on Lively Art, since they stick out like a sore thumb amidst a slew of French coldwave bands. That said, they certainly share the label’s aesthetic, in many ways a touchstone for La Vague Froide. Otherwise, you have classic tracks by Asylum Party, Museum of Devotion, and arguably Little Nemo’s best song… Not too shabby! The CD version provided here features three additional bonus tracks, to boot- bringing the total number of tracks to…well…….

While 13 is incredibly strong, L’Appel de la Muse is an all-time favorite. Track after track of dark French perfection. This is the first of five comps bearing this title, this series was perfect for showcasing new, underground French post-punk acts, oftentimes broadening their geographical horizons over the years. This first installment was the only release on vinyl, and kicked things off for the Alea Jacta Est in 1989. Alea Jacta Est would go on to release most of Lucie Cries’ discography, as well as Ellysgarden‘s debut release. Meanwhile, there are several repeat offenders across both of these compilations. Little Nemo’s “Alan’s Waiting” appears in re-recorded form here, and this version has never been compiled elsewhere. You also have killer exclusives from Excès Nocturne, Message, and a delightfully bizarre, yet satisfying track from Medikao, just to name a few. All in all, a flawless compilation, and part of a perfect pair. Enjoy!

13

Various Artists- 13
1. Tribes Are Meeting- Teepee
2. Love or Madness- Asylum Party
3. This Place- Data-Bank-A
4. Lover Pot Pie- Sky Cries Mary
5. Stiff- Numb
6. City Lights- Little Nemo
7. The Party- Mary Goes Round
8. Quimbi Come Home- Museum of Devotion
9, Istante (Live)- Club De Rome
10. Anton’s Mind’s Getting Blind- Collection d’Arnell~Andréa
11. The Subject Animal- Anechoic Chamber
12. (In the) Name of Surival- Circle Confusion
13. Wallpaper Dying- And Also the Trees

l'appel

Various Artists- L’Appel de la Muse
1. The Muse’s Calling- Lucie Cries
2. Froh- Clair Obscur
3. Les Enfants- L’An III
4. Sex Gore- Medikao
5. Alan’s Waiting (2nd Version)- Little Nemo
6. Excès Nocturne
7. Anastoria- Tuatha De Danann
8. The Nightmare (1st Version)- Mary Goes Round
9. The Grave- Message
10. Dreaming- Asylum Party

*download both here*