Gang Of Four ‘I Love A Man In A Uniform’ (Remix) US 12″ EP (Warner Brothers Records, 0-29907, 1982)

A desirable release back in the day for UK dwellers such as I, another tasty US 12″ EP that contains otherwise unavailable mixes and, in ‘Producer’, a track that was never issued this side of the ocean at all – and packaged up in a unique sleeve design as well, taking its styling cue from the ‘Songs Of The Free’ parent album.

Gang Of Four US 1982 'I Love A Man In A Uniform' (Remix) 12" EP front cover
^ Gang Of Four US 1982 ‘I Love A Man In A Uniform’ (Remix) 12″ EP front cover

Side One:

I Love A Man In A Uniform (Remix) (5:35)
Produced by Mike Howlett and with Jon King and Andrew Gill.
Remixed by Steve Sinclair with Hugo Burnham. Engineered by Randy Burns. Executive Producer David Rostamo.

Side Two:

Producer (2:33)
Produced by Mike Howlett and with Jon King and Andrew Gill.

I Love A Man In A Uniform (Dub Version) (4:48)
Produced by Mike Howlett and with Jon King and Andrew Gill.
Remixed by Steve Sinclair. Engineered by Randy Burns. Executive Producer David Rostamo.

Gang Of Four US 1982 'I Love A Man In A Uniform' (Remix) 12" EP rear cover
^ Gang Of Four US 1982 ‘I Love A Man In A Uniform’ (Remix) 12″ EP rear cover

I don’t know what the back story as to how it came to be that new mixes were commissioned, these versions of ‘I Love A Man In A Uniform’ differ from what was issued in the UK (which got the 4′ 07″ LP mix, 4′ 30″ 12″ mix and a 3’37” 7″ edit) but I’d guess it was a Warner Brothers Records initiative. These two mixes of the track on the 12″ are not massively different from the UK versions, but tighten the beat up, sliced and diced in the edit suite to enhance the funkiness.

Gang Of Four US 1982 'I Love A Man In A Uniform' (Remix) 12" EP label side 1
^ Gang Of Four US 1982 ‘I Love A Man In A Uniform’ (Remix) 12″ EP label side 1

The B side features ‘Producer’, presumably an outtake from the ‘Songs Of The Free’ sessions, judging by the production credits, never did see a UK release at all. Lyrically, this is from a similar stable of critical record company reportage much like Wire’s ‘Go Ahead’ had been back in 1979… which was also had EMI Records in its sights… perhaps no coincidence there was no UK release…? “A man from EMI wears a suit and smiles, I don’t hear hits, he says, just sound…” It’s a good bit snappier sounding than much of the LP, it’s much more like the sound of the first two albums – perhaps it was judged to not sit well enough with the album as a whole?

Gang Of Four US 1982 'I Love A Man In A Uniform' (Remix) 12" EP label side 2
^ Gang Of Four US 1982 ‘I Love A Man In A Uniform’ (Remix) 12″ EP label side 2

On CD, the tracks from this 12″ have eventually appeared, though not easy to track down these days. The first of the tracks to make an appearance on CD was the second track on the 12″ B side, the Dub Version of ‘I Love A Man In A Uniform’ – included as one of two bonus tracks on the 1996 US re-issue of ‘Songs Of The Free’ (Infinite Zero / American Records, 9 43067-2), the other bonus track being the only CD outing so far for the UK B side track ‘The World At Fault’. It’s a pretty hard to find CD nowadays this one – another CD release for the Dub Version was in 2004 various artists compilation CD, ’80’s Underground Clubbing’ (Belgium, Bang! Music, 313003).

Gang Of Four 'Songs Of The Free' US Infinite Zero/American Records edition front cover design
^ Gang Of Four ‘Songs Of The Free’ US Infinite Zero/American Records edition front cover design
Gang Of Four 'Songs Of The Free' US Infinite Zero/American Records edition rear case design
^ Gang Of Four ‘Songs Of The Free’ US Infinite Zero/American Records edition rear case design

The A side remix and the first track from the B side, ‘Producer’, were eventually issued on the US Gang Of Four compilation ‘100 Flowers Bloom’ in 1998 (Rhino Records, R2 75479), a far more adventurous compilation of all kinds of versions gathered up than the earlier ‘A Brief History Of The Twentieth Century’.

Gang Of Four '100 Flowers Bloom' US compilation CD front pack design
^ Gang Of Four ‘100 Flowers Bloom’ US compilation CD front pack design
Gang Of Four '100 Flowers Bloom' US compilation CD rear pack design
^ Gang Of Four ‘100 Flowers Bloom’ US compilation CD rear pack design
Gang Of Four '100 Flowers Bloom' US compilation CDs and booklet
^ Gang Of Four ‘100 Flowers Bloom’ US compilation CDs and booklet

‘Songs Of The Free’ has long had a poor history on CD and this year’s ’77-81′ box set doesn’t give it much love either, leaving it out in the cold of what’s considered the cool stuff – which is harsh.It’s a great album in its own sound, which is a good but different from that found across the band’s first two albums. Perhaps there is still time for a re-release of the album that also gathers up the B sides and multiple mixes of ‘I Love A Man In A Uniform’ yet…?

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