For this evenings batch it’s a trio of female fronted bands and tracks from 1988.
First up is the 60’s obsessed Voice Of The Beehive. From the debut album “Let It Bee” we get the characteristic duel vocals of sisters Tracey Bryn and Melissa Brooke Belland belting out an early hit. I never knew, before researching this, that the band contained both bassist and drummer from Madness, Mark Bedford and Daniel M Woodgate respectively. Joining them was two guitarists, Mike Jones and Martin Brett to complete the line-up.
So on chugs the bouncy “I Walk The Earth” with the riff of Temple Of Love by the Sisters on it (I kid you not!)
On the B-side we get the West Coast, upbeat strum of “This Weak.” Lastly we get a decent Lou Reed/ Velvet Underground cover of “Jesus…” (Ah, the 80’s twelve home of the obscure cover version) suitably psychedelically warped.
London Records – LONX 169
|A||I Walk The Earth|
Even more from Mike (and something I do have on vinyl and was nice hearing it again and I get to post the mad video) The Swiss duo again display their cutting edge and invite the likes of Junior Vasquez and Zeo to remix the track from the album “Flag.” So Yello bring on the heavy guitar of Chico Hablas on their “In Gear” version, fast and frantic and fun. Zeo, really crunches the sound and chops up the vocals. Not sure about the drums but it furiously stomps about like a spoilt child.
Vasquez, likewise, slows it down and grooves it up, especially the longer, “Africa” mix which he makes his own. Plenty of House samples going on.
Mercury – PRO 768-1
|A1||Tied Up (In Gear)||3:58|
|A2||Tied Up (In Fantasia)||6:50|
|B1||Tied Up (In Africa) Edit||3:40|
|B2||Tied Up (In Africa) Part II||6:28|
New to me and coming on like they woke up a few years too late in 1988 thinking it was 1984 and still quite New Romantic. British but signed to the Chrysalis US label, so expect a guitar solo 🙂 A duo of David Luckhurst and Peter Parsons they even released 3 albums (the first 2 were self financed) dating back to the early 80’s, hence that sound. Here they have Steve Nye (Japan) on production and engineer Kevin Moloney. The “Generic mix” takes a while for the vocals to kick in but is quite a fun listen. The “Genetic” bounces along with more dub effects and vocals.For 80’s guilty pleasurists (I like the samples!) Nothing about them on the web!
Chrysalis – VAS-2766
|A||Burning Rain (Album Version)||3:40|
|B1||Burning Rain (Generic Mix)||6:39|
|B2||Burning Rain (Genetic Mix)||7:17|
More Mike B stuff as he brings us some quite rare Blow Monkeys stuff. (I can hear their fans rubbing their hands with glee over this) The limited edition of the “It Pays To Belong” release, remixed by their keyboardist Marius Vries (who went on to work with U2, Madonna and Björk) and from the original production of Stephen Hague. Bright horns, sweeping strings, a “State Of Independece” bassline, anti-Tory dance music and very apt at the moment!
Other tracks is a housed-up version of “This Is Your Life”, pioneering for 1988, some unbelievable sounds and effects on here (even Acid!). Phil Bodger helping Vries with the remix. Best dance track I’ve posted this year!!
Last is the Phil Harding remix of their BIG hit “Digging Your Scene,” synthing up the original but remain quite faithful with the brass section and strings.
NEW LINK 2016
RCA – PT 42232 R
|A||It Pays To Be Twelve||6:55|
|B1||This Is Your House||7:08|
|B2||Digging Your Remix||5:58|
So not sounding anything like early Aztec Camera, we have this sooooo 80’s sounding track, “Deep & Wide & Tall” with distinct voice of Roddy Frame and some obligatory acoustic guitar thrown in towards the end. The “Breakdown Mix” is a mastery display of computer aided restructure, I’m a bit of a fan of that. Remixed by Tom Lord Alge (from the Lord Alge production family) it see’s gentle acoustic guitar pitted up against some massive synths 🙂 A clockwork section and a guitar solo,much better than the 7″! B-side is”Bad Education”which has some organ, more strummed guitar and sounds more like the Aztec Camera of old, thank God! (But what’s with that clap-along “la-la-la” bit, ah well)
WEA – YZ 154RT
|A||Deep & Wide & Tall (Breakdown Mix)|
|B1||Deep & Wide & Tall|
Business as usual for Green Gartside, keeping the same style and sounds as he had on the successful “Cupid Psyche 85” album, all samplers and bright synths. This bounces along with latin percussion, almost with a retro feel for 1988. Mixed by Ray Bardani and with some backing vocals by B.J. Nelson and Fonzi Thornton, to supplement Green’s distinct vocals. More funk is induced on the B-side, “World Come Back To Life” but it is typical Scritti Politti and better than the A-side. David Gamson utilizing the Yamaha DX7 and Synclavier for full effect!
NEW LINK 2017
Virgin – VST 1082
|A||First Boy In This Town (Lovesick) (Extended Remix)|
|B1||First Boy In This Town (Lovesick) (Instrumental)|
|B2||World Come Back To Life|
From 1988 and re-released version from the previous year, a remix from Irish producer, Paul Staveley O’Duffy. (He just polished up the original production from Dave Bascombe) of the toe-tapper “Mary’s Prayer”. The band themselves were a trio of Dundee lads (Brothers Gary and Kit Clarke and Ged Grimes -who went on to do some work with Simple Minds) who were in a previous band “Spencer Tracy” but their were objections so they changed their name to Danny Wilson from a Frank Sinatra movie Meet Danny Wilson (1952). The B-side has a more jazz tinged, blue eyed soul demo track, co-produced by Dundee producer Allan McGlone. This has interesting lyrics and some accordian and superb, confident vocals from Gary Clarke, what a voice! As a bonus you get an excellent cover of Bowie’s “Kooks,” capturing the sentiment of the song brilliantly.
Virgin – VS 934-12
|A||Mary’s Prayer (Paul Staveley O’Duffy Remix)||3:50|
|B1||Monkey’s Shiny Day (Original Demo Version)||5:18|
Still, still in 1987 and this promo featuring the, then, DMC Mix Champion, CJ Mackintosh. A classic which I’ve split into the 4 tracks, it was supposed to play through both sides but the tracks are so different and worth separating into their component parts. “Fire” is funky and gives Cameo a run for its money. “Boops” needs no introduction, a classic with superb production by Bill Laswell, giving some extra dub and world music influences. The B-side involves some scratching with some now well known samples and plenty of James Brown, as it was the late 80’s.
4th & Broadway – BOOPS 1
|A1.2||Boops (Here To Go)|
Keeping the jazzy pop overtones this promo twelve from Dr. Robert and his Blow Monkeys. 80’s blue-eyed soul with great production from American jazz producer, Michael Baker and mixed by Bryan “Chuck” New. Of more interest is the B-sides with Mick Anker providing some great bass on the two “Grantham” tracks, cutting edge dance production for the time and guest appearance of “It Doesn’t Have To Be That Way”
RCA – MONKT 5DJ
|A||Out With Her|
|B1||The Grantham Grizzler|
|B2||The Grantham Groover|
From 1987 and a debut for this blog, I bring you Breathe!!! (Anyone remember the band Hurts ?) A boy band that played their own instruments and wrote their own stuff, comprising of David Glasper, (Vocals) Michael Delahunty, (Bass) Ian Spice (Drums) and Marcus Lillington (Guitar) plus a load of synths and an uncredited saxophone player.A big old smoochy ballad, reminds me of “It Used To Be My Playground” by Madonna. Produced by Bob Sargeant and mixed by Chris Porter it did really well in America and reached number 4 in the UK, it completely passed me back in the day! The Extended version is a different take for those who know the single mix and the B-side is a funky instrumental called “Life And Times.”
NEW LINK!!! 2016
Siren – SRNT 68
|A||Hands To Heaven (Extended Heaven)||6:23|
|B1||Hands To Heaven (Radio Mix)||4:18|
|B2||Life And Times||4:46|