Tag Archive for 'synth'

“Baby O Baby” by Martin Rev

rev.jpgMartin Rev is better known as the noisier half of the incredible NYC group Suicide. Though Suicide put out a few additional albums over the years (the latest in 1988), both Rev and partner Alan Vega put out some top-notch (and not-so-top-notch) solo records. The earlier ones are best, I’ve found.

This record is very reminiscent of was Suicide was doing– minimal, droney washes over speady beats– but you can tell Rev is using his freedom to really experiment with the additional synth tools he had at his disposal. It’s really good stuff, I think.

I’d say that the best thing the two ever did was the live Suicide album Zero Hour, which is comprised of two concerts from the late 70s in New York and Berlin.

Martin Rev, “Baby O Baby” from the Martin Rev LP on Infidelity records (1980)

Suicide, “Dream Baby Dream”:
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Relatedly, here’s a great video of Alan Vega’s “Jukebox Babe” from French TV.

“Telephon” and “Hundsgemein” by Ideal

ideal.jpgAnother European two-fer, this time from Klaus- Schulze- of- Tangerine- Dream- produced Ideal.

These tracks are from the aggressive new wave band’s 1980 debut. They went on to put out a couple of albums that I’ve not heard, but I love where this LP is going.

I think about this album most mornings when I tie my tie. Yes, I have to wear a tie to my job. Seventeen-year-old Patrick would kick my ass. I’d hate to see what he’d do when he saw the tights I do my winter running in.

Ideal, “Telephon” from the self-titled LP (1980)

Ideal, “Hundsgemein” from the self-titled LP (1980)

“Decollage” and “Fonce a Mort” by the Honeymoon Killers

honey.jpgA couple of great tracks from Belgium’s The Honeymoon Killers. I couldn’t settle for a single one, so here are my two faves from this disc. Actually, now that I’m looking around, I realize you can purchase pristine versions of the entire album from other’s digital download site. Go for it. Also, there’s a 2007 remix of “Decollage” Prins Thomas’s 2007 release Cosmo Galactic Prism 2CD, which you can and should by at other music.

An uncited Wikipedia quote sez:

Live on stage The Honeymoon Killers often used pre-recorded drum machine loops which were played from cassette, over this they put guitar, bass, drums, trashy percussion, cheap-sounding organ, with Vromman and Vincent taking turns on singing. Some of their songs were extended to 20 minutes with their own brand of dub echo effects.

Sounds like fun, huh? I once posted that I purchased this album, and someone emailed me offering like $50 for it. Here’s a little for free. The CD/digital re-release of it are well worth tracking down.

The Honeymoon Killers, “Decollage” from the Les Tueres de la Lune de Miel” LP (1981)

The Honeymoon Killers, “Fonce a Mort” from the Les Tueres de la Lune de Miel” LP (1981)

Mutant Sounds has a super-rare album available (for free of course!) of the group that eventually released this disc in 1981, named, like this album, Les Tueures de la Lune de Miel. Go grab it and thank them!

Also, the always-terrific MissingToof.com featured them earlier this year on a New Wave Tuesday post; a couple tracks available there, including their full-blast version of Serge Gainsbourg’s “Laisse Tomber Les Filles”. 

Here’s a somewhat-tame live taste, from Dutch TV in 1983:[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/HZrDJvXyKBY" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

Update: The Walrus Music Blog has what sounds like a higher-quality version of “Decollage” as well as the song performed above.

“Show Business” by Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson

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I love any song that reminds me of the circus. This is from one of Gil Scott-Heron‘s strong, funky post “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised“-fame late 70s LPs with Brian Jackson.

This music is so polished and tight; the keys and beat in it sound like they came right out of a computer to me. Madison Avenue is my other jam from this album. I prefer his groovier, more singy music, which I feel often out-politics his spoken word work because the verses are so well-crafted and succinct. I’ll probably end up sharing a lot more in this vein.

Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson, “Show Business” from the Secrets LP on Arista Records (1978)

The Bottle:
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Hold On:[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/uTCQSk2l8bc" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

“Compulsion X-TRA Beats” by Time Traveler

timet.jpgIs this actually the official sound of 1988? I think it might be. This is a great little instrumental moment from a kinda throw-away 12″ I have from Roll Records.

I know almost nothing about the artist, Time Traveler (or do we attribute this to ISH, the producer?), except that his/her name is incredibly accurate. All of the sudden, there I am, in the late 80s, swimming in synthetic cowbells and handclaps. Short and sweet.

The stamp on the sleeve says “Property of Gerald the Whirl.”

Time Traveler, “Compulsion X-TRA Beats” from the Compulsion 12″ on Roll Records (1988)

“Henry’s In Love,” by Henry Badowski

I recently ripped my LP of Henry Badowski’s Life is a Grand for our friends over at dualtrack, so it’s been turning up on my iPod all the time lately. While I like all of the dense and poppy tracks, I find myself repeating this one over and over again. The lyrics fit together really well, I think.
Henry Badowski, “Henry’s In Love” from the Life is a Grand LP (1981)

If you like this track, go get the whole album zip– James from dualtrack was kind enough to post it on rapid share.

& please, if anyone has any requests of things you’d like me to post, let me know. I know I’m likely to continue in my own directions until someone requests I try a new one.

“Lean Meat,” by Lonnie Smith

lonnie.jpgSuspenseful near-disco funk number with almost no resolution. A great tranistional track, I’ve always thought.

Not to be confused with Lonnie Liston Smith (of “with the Cosmic Echoes” fame), this track comes from jazz organist Dr. Lonnie Smith. So many Lonnie Smiths, so little time.

This was released in 1976, but didn’t appear on an album until 1980′s When the Night Is Right, one of Lonnie’s many awesomely named albums. Many of these items are still in print and for sale, and all of them are funky, as far as I know. Please purchase some. From both Lonnies.

Lonnie Smith’s website says it all, so I won’t waste any more of your time. DO NOT SKIP INTRO.

Lonnie Smith, “Lean Meat,” from the Groove Merchant 45 (1976)

“Sound Alarm,” by Polyrock

poly.jpgGreat new wave from NYC. I really love the use of warm, light keys in all of this band’s music. This album was produced in part by Phillip Glass, which may be why it sounds so fresh still.

I just found out that this album, as well as their album Changing Hearts were re-released by Wounded Bird this year. I think I’ve picked up all of their discs in the dollar bin, but I urge you to get the cds. That way you don’t have to deal with any surface noise. & check out Wounded Bird’s tons of other great 60s, 70s, and 80s re-releases while you’re at it.

One of the things I love about this record sleeve beyond the awesome colors and typography, is the portraits on the back… it seriously looks like 5 of the 6 are the same person in different clothes and poses:

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Now that’s a look. Find more tracks on their myspace page.

Polyrock, “Sound Alarm,” from the Polyrock LP (1980)

“Get A Little,” by Patrick Cowley

This is from Buffalo Native, San Francisco electro pioneer Patrick Cowley’s 1981 album, Megatron Man. I first became a fan of Cowley when I picked up his second album, Mind Warp, based solely on the cover art. I eventually was able to track down this disc, which represents, in my opinion, his best work. Though it’s firmly rooted in the trappings of late 70s Hi-NRG/club music, there are traces of post-punk and kitsch that remind me of the Cramps and the Pop Group, as well as, (big surprise!) the Athens, GA bands from that time.

Patrick Cowley, “Get A Little”, from Megatron Man (1981)

More Patrick Cowley tracks are available for download on his posthumous MySpace, discography here. Looks like there was a 2007 re-release of his Donna Summer Remix that you can buy here in you are rich. Or you can buy this collection from Amazon, which has some awesome “Customers also bought…” suggestions.

“Menergy” on Youtube, with a slide show of Cowley Imagery.
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