Issued in 1982 by Gary Numan’s then US label, Atco, this 12″ promo single features a unique remix of ‘White Boys and Heroes’ which has still never been released on CD to date, despite the numerous re-issue campaigns that Beggars Banquet have had for Numan’s back catalogue.
The remix of ‘White Boys and Heroes’ is by Chris Nelson and clocks in at 8 minutes and 20 seconds. ‘We Take Mystery’ on side two of the promo 12″ (which is referred to as a ‘Promotional 12″ EP’ despite only having two songs) is the 7 minutes 42 seconds version as per the standard 12″. It comes in a plain white card sleeve with a large sticker on the front cover only.
‘White Boys and Heroes’ is interesting because it is not just an edit – it has additional overdubs (mostly keyboards and fretless bass), different vocals in places and a lot less saxophone than the regular mixes (it sneaks in only towards the end).
To my ears, it is a great mix and it is a real pity that despite the umpteen CD issues for its parent album, ‘I, Assassin’, it has never surfaced on any of them. Perhaps the master tape has been lost? Record company politics (this was on Atco only, not Beggars Banquet) – who knows? It would be great to see it re-issued in digital format some day. What’s great about it is that it has extra keyboards at the start (which give it a more ‘Music For Chameleons’ similarity), some fairly extended fretless bass interludes and very little saxophone (which I’ve never been keen on for this track).
If you want to hear the track, check out the Audio Principle page of the North American Gary Numan Fan Club (NAGNFC) pages maintained by Jim Napier.