Archive for the ‘Missing in action’ Category

Side by side: Hard Corps – ‘Metal and Flesh’ album versions

Thursday, May 14th, 2020

This post will look at the various releases of the Hard Corps compilation album, ‘Metal and Flesh’ and its multiple mixes and selections across a small but surprisingly varied releases. I have posted about Hard Corps before, they remain, even after all these years, a favourite. At a time when bands were increasingly content to rely on the clean gleam of the new digital instrumentation wave, Hard Corps were synthesising their own sounds from a variety of elements. In the rhythm department in particular, none of the obvious go-to sources of the era, save for a Roland  TR-808 to provide a basic chassis in early stages of a track’s development, swapped out as they progressed for their urgent, hard, insistent pure electronic beats driving the music. Whether in the more in your face and up tempo signature pieces as ‘Metal and Flesh’, ‘Dirty’ or ‘Desolation Land’, or on the slower, more melancholic works such as ‘The Bell’ or ‘Respirer’. My goodness, how well did Regine Fetete’s abstractions describe in fragments such bittersweet worlds to marry with the music produced by Hugh Ashton, Robert Doran and Clive Pierce.

Hard Corps ‘Metal and Flesh’ 1990 CD

The CD was the first version of the album to appear, I received my copy by mail order on 19th September 1990 (having ordered it from an advert for Beat Route mail order back in August). The entry gives an earlier release date of 18th June 1990 though. I don’t know the background to the album and how it came to be. Seems to gather together earlier, harder and more melancholic tracks along with later period ones where the sound has softened a little over time. I have no idea if it is really as clear cut as that, but a I wonder if there was some kind of change, perhaps related to the period where the band’s period with Polydor must have soured and led to be a barren period of activity. 1986 in particular saw, for example, little if any live activity.

Hard Corps 'Metal and Flesh' 1990 CD - front cover design

^ Hard Corps ‘Metal and Flesh’ 1990 CD – front cover design


Matthew Seligman, 1955-2020

Saturday, April 18th, 2020

Very sad news indeed today to read of the death of Matthew Seligman. Bass player par excellence, so many great records in my collection that he plays on – Thomas Dolby, Peter Murphy, Snail and many more – and of course, The Soft Boys. Sadly, a victim of COVID-19, the disease that the current sham of a UK government seem incapable of managing without putting so many in harms way.

If you are not familiar with Matthew there is fine obituary on Slicing Up Eyeballs.

The photo below is one I took back in 2005 on a hot August night in a cramped rehearsal studio for his then band Snail (Matthew, Jon Klein, Chris Bell)during a video shoot.

Such a sad loss, RIP Matthew.

Matthew Seligman and Snail, Shepherds Bush Rehearsal Studio, August 2005

^ Matthew Seligman and Snail, Shepherds Bush Rehearsal Studio, August 2005.

The Passions – ‘Sanctuary’ US CD (Rubellan Remasters, RUBY08CD, 2019)

Thursday, November 28th, 2019

The wonderful ongoing series of releases from Rubellan Remasters continues in fine style with a long hoped for first time to CD edition of the third and final album from The Passions, ‘Sanctuary’. Truth be told, I had long given up hope of this extremely fine album by the band ever seeing light of day again – so, I was well pleased when I heard the news it was to be released at long last. And being a Rubellan Remaster, quality is a given, from the audio remastering by Scott Davies, through to the selection of tracks the release includes.

The Passions - Sanctuary CD front cover design

^ The Passions – Sanctuary CD front cover design


Steve Strange, 1959-2015

Thursday, February 12th, 2015

For some reason, I’ve never posted anything about Visage on this blog, despite having a fair few of their records. The return of the band in recent years has been a most welcome surprise, with a strong album that tapped into the original style of the band and a string of fine singles (and accompanying remixes, the latter something of a rarity). This on top of their classic era material, particularly the first two albums. So, it is with sadness that I have just read about the passing of Steve Strange. RIP, Steve.

Remake, remodel: Wire ‘Change Becomes Us’ and Karl Bartos ‘Off The Record’

Sunday, March 31st, 2013

Arriving within a short period of one another, two releases which both delve back into the history books in order to refashion roughs into polished new shapes. Wire have taken a selection of material that previously saw release only as live versions (on 1981’s ‘Document and Eyewitness’ live set and, later, the ‘Turns and Strokes’ compilation gathering together remaining waifs and strays of the period) – so, mostly familiar to long-time Wire fans. Bartos meanwhile has looked back to private musical sketches to bring something new to the world.

Wire 'Changes Becomes Us' limited edition and and Karl Bartos 'Off The Record' CDs

^ Wire 'Changes Becomes Us' limited edition and and Karl Bartos 'Off The Record' CDs