A simple joy of physical format products – the ability to pinpoint precise times and places associated with them. For me, Brian Eno’s 1997 album release ‘The Drop’, (All Saints, ASCD32), always takes me back to a summer morning on the ground floor of HMV’s flagship London Store on Oxford Street, on a brief city break, where I was loaded up with a shopping list of records to look out for across the many and varied record shops of the great city. New and exotic, second-hand and scarce – the list was long. This album had only just come out and was on that list…
We’ve visited Drinking Electricity once before, with their ‘Cruising Missiles’ 45, which was my introduction to the band and their work. I’d go on to buy the subsequent single releases on and off as they came out, where their own original synth pop sound would emerge. This single though was their own unique minimal synth rock’n’roll take with a cover version of the 1976 Flamin’ Groovies track, ‘Shake Some Action’. Like the band’s previous cover version of Johnny Kidd & the Pirates’ ‘Shakin’ All Over’, this was again a faster tempo, stripped down angular guitar thrashing and synth interpretation. Depending on how well you get on with late 70s/early 80s minimal synth pop and its production values versus the original, lushly produced power-pop take of the Flamin’ Groovies, this may well take a bit of getting used to. In the context of a produced-to-death, auto-tuned attention deficit get-to-the-chorus within a count of seconds not minutes of modern pop, this is beamed in from another world.
Flip it over and its a whole other galaxy of primitivism in comparison to the original – the ‘Cheapo’ demo version replaces drums with ticky-ticky drum box and even a prominent earth-hum buzzing in the background throughout. Nonetheless, it sparks away in its own exciting, cheapo way. Continue reading “Drinking Electricity ‘Shake Some Action’ UK 7″ single (Pop:Aural, POP 005, 1980)”
What is it? A one-sided 7″ single with a 3 minute 33 seconds edit of the ‘3-D’ re-recording of ‘Die Roboter’ given away exclusively with the German magazine MusikExpress in its August 2017 issue. The flipside, rather than completely blank, still has a red label design with the pixelated band members logo and has an etched artwork design on the vinyl, with ‘KRAFTWERK’ (top) and ‘12345678’ (bottom) in the familiar pixelated font so beloved of many a Kraftwerk release from 1981 onwards.
This is the first of what now appears to be something of a biennial series of 7″ releases for Kraftwerk in MusikExpress magazine. It was followed in 2019 with a new edit of ‘Autobahn’ on blue vinyl 7″, which was featured in a previous post. Continue reading “Kraftwerk – ‘Die Roboter’ MusikExpress magazine German 7″ single (Kling Klang/Parlophone, 2017)”
The Human Condition was a short-lived band featuring reunited PiL band-mates Jah Wobble on bass and Jim Walker on drums, the line-up rounded out with Animal (aka Dave Maltby) on guitar and also occasionally augmented by Annie Whitehead on saxophone. This ‘rush release’ is one of two live recordings released on limited run cassettes that were issued back in the day and document their fine instrumental workouts. The packaging was stripped down and minimal on both, having the air of bootleg issues, perhaps, despite being official output. As far as I am aware they have never been re-issued in any form. One of the tracks on here would appear in studio form on 1983’s ‘Snakecharmer’ release by Wobble, Czukay and The Edge. I’ve selected my favourite track from the cassette to sample via a YouTube upload, ‘Neon‘ – see what you reckon for yourself… if you like it, plenty more from the same account to check out.
Just when you thought there could be no more Bill Nelson box sets, here is this little curio, ‘7″ Bill Nelson Singles’ (aka ‘Assorted Nelsons’, as it was described on the merchandise sheet of the time. Released in the latter period of the ‘Acquitted by Mirrors’ fan club period, this box set gathers together a few stray singles and packages them up in a unique box. I would bet that this may well have been a way to bundle together bought back overstock of earlier Cocteau, Mercury and Portrait records era singles.
Whatever the reason, it was nice to get a couple of them again in minty mint condition, or which were otherwise different in some way. For example, I had the double-pack version of ‘Youth of Nation on Fire’. The box set cost the small sum of £4.75 plus 75p post and packing back in the day.
The singles included in the set are; Continue reading “Bill Nelson – ‘7″ Bill Nelson Singles’ Box Set (Cocteau Records, JEAN 6)”