Another obscure American New Wave band to get your ears around. From 1988 and from the same musical school as Animotion. (if you listen to this A-side) Their last single release from a recording career spanning back to 1982, it was off the album “Vermillion”. The American New Wave rock elements are still there but it has been electrified up and released on Prince’s Paisley Park record label. Again, the song was written by Lightning Seeds, Ian Broudie. (it appeared as a Lightning Seeds track on their debut album) The UK connection continues with it being produced by Ian Ritchie and mixed by Paul Brown (Both respected session musicians) The mixes certainly add a few synths to enhance the texture but I think I prefer the more straight new wave jangle of the B-side “Time Is Slower.”
Paisley Park – 0-20957
|A||Love Explosion (Eruptus Mix)||6:22|
|B1||Love Explosion (Interruptus Mix)||3:51|
|B2||Love Explosion (Dubious Mix)||5:43|
|B3||Time’s Going Slower (LP Version)||3:19|
Riding the wave of success, particularly in Japan. They ploughed onwards keeping to their formula and getting their 3rd hit in a row with their third UK release.
Sigue Sigue Sputnik – Sex Bomb Boogie (German 12″)
So ahead of the game and using opera and classical music samples. Wow, how to use a sequence in a punk way and the guitar harks back to the Billy Idol led Generation X.
Parlophone – 1C K 060-20 1565 6
|A||Sex Bomb Boogie (Magic Flute)||5:44|
|B||Sex Bomb Dance||4:21|
Sci-Fi Sex Stars – Rockit Miss USA / Teenage Thunder (LTD Edition 12″)
Rare and originally only available from the Tour merchandise. This 4 tracker contains 2 alternative album mixes plus a stonky live track, “Suicide.” The mixes contain some really interesting samples, the Iran War even gets a soundbite. The Best 12″ so far.
Written on the back of the naughty sleeve was this…. (sorry it’s the uncensored one!)
NO MUSICIANS ● RECORDED BY POP STARS ● TECHNOLOGICALLY ENHANCED
MMM, THE SPUTNIKS CHANGED MY LIFE – SEREENA SCI-FI ●
MUSIC BOX ■ TOP ■ ROBO-TECH ■ MARC RICH, A MAN OF WEALTH AND TASTE ▲ FLAUNT IT!!
● A SCI-FI SEX CORP. DESIGN
Who M I? – WM 1001
|A1||Rockit Miss USA (Death Wish IV)||5:25|
|AA1||Teenage Thunder (Sputstyle)||5:12|
Sigue Sigue Sputniiiiiik – Success! (Acid Remixes) (UK 12″)
So the follow up album was called was called “Dress For Excess” and saw them go from punky electronica to full blown club tracks. Their fifth release is a dabble into the lasted Acid House scene, it was 1988. This was their last hit, reaching Number 35. The second track tries to be a proper Acid House anthem but we have PWL behind the production with Phil Harding mixing so then it was hardly underground! The “Balearacidic” is probably the best of the bunch, slightly edgier and keeping the vocals in.
Normal service resumes on “Frankenstein Cha-Cha” guitars are plugged in and that sequencer gets charged up. The Ramones go Techno.
Parlophone – 12 SSSX 3
|A1||Success (Acid Mix #1) (Vox)||4:20|
|A2||Success (Acid Mix # 2) (Inst)||5:03|
|B2||Success (Balearacidic 12 Inch)||6:04|
Sigue Sigue Sputnik – Success! (US 12″)
So another myriad of mixes appear on the US release (all from PWL and Phil Harding with Neil X from the band getting a look in) Less dance orientated and much more poppier than the UK previous to this,it even goes down the Frankie Goes To Hollywood route. So as well as the FGTH main mix, you get a “Funky Mix” darkish house mix, with some great Anti-greed soundbites and American comedy film samples. The “Micro-Dot Dub” is another quite hard Acid House mix until the vocals kick in, but good for 1988. The “Metal Hammer Mix” does what it says on the tin, guitar riff heaven and a bit like their “old” sound. (Nearly ZZ Top!!!)
EMI USA – V-56130
|A1||Success (12″ Dance Mix)||6:45|
|A2||Success (7″ Dance Mix)||3:00|
|A3||Success (Funky Mix)||5:27|
|B1||Success (Balaeracidic Mix)||6:04|
|B2||Success (Micro-Dot Dub)||6:30|
|B3||Success (Metal Hammer Mix)||4:44|
I keep forgetting they were a synth pop group from the UK (and a Manchester band ) Another single from their self titled debut album and released in 1988. It sounds very heavily influenced by Heaven 17 with a bubbling synth bassline but some of the sounds are quite dated. Produced by Richard James Burgess with remixes by Nellee Hooper. The normal 12″ shows the song in its best light. The “Seize Her Mix” is very commercial and classic synthpop.
Virgin Records America, Inc. – DMD 1319
|A1||Sight Of Your Tears (12″ Version)||6:01|
|A2||Sight Of Your Tears (Dub Version)||4:50|
|B1||Sight Of Your Tears (Seize Her Mix)||6:35|
|B2||Sight Of Your Tears (Dub With Percussion)||3:40|
|B3||Sight Of Your Tears (7″ Mix)||3:20|
So Part 1 of a look back at one of the most enigmatic and weirdest bands of the 80’s. Using samples and studio trickery, punk ethos and just plain good marketing of both product and image. This was Sci-Fi Rock and Roll, out doing KLF by a good few years in terms of duping the record buying public and coming ten years after the Sex Pistols managed it.
The band was formed by Tony James, who had just left the band Gen X, and Neal X (Whitmore), who recruited “post-punk drag queen” Martin Degville. Degville was a clothes designer and supplied the band’s wardrobe, and YaYa, the store where he worked, became the band’s base.
Sigue Sigue Sputnik – Love Missile F1-11 (US 12″)
Quite different to the UK version with different samples (the movie samples in particular) and sounds. So simple but so effective, a homage to Suicide. Unbelievable but people forgot it was produced by Giorgio Moroder. Went absolutely massive worldwide.
Manhattan Records – V-56021
|A||Love Missile F1-11 (Extended Version)||6:52|
|B1||Love Missile F1-11 (Dance Version)||4:31|
|B2||Love Missile F1-11 (Single Version)||3:45|
Sigue Sigue Sputnik – Love Missile F1-11 (Bangkok Remix) (Spanish 12″)
Another variation on a theme but with a shed load of samples, classical orchestra, gunshots and a very loud drum machine plastered over the top. So this limited edition version has another Dance Mix as well as “Hack-Attack” (Dub Version) (a more rock and roll influenced track but still using that bass sequence and very heavy use of a sampler on Degvilles vocals)
Parlophone – 12-SSS-1
|A||Love Missile F1-11 (Bangkok Remix)||6:27|
|B1||Love Missile F1-11 (Dance Mix)||4:26|
|B2||Hack-Attack (Dub Version)||3:52|
Sigue Sigue Sputnik – 21 st Century Boy (12″)
Second single “21 st Century Boy” was nearly exactly the same tempo and just as minimal but with plenty of samples, when I first heard a clip I thought it was the same as their debut! My favourite by them, the normal 12″ is about as inventive as you were to get for 1986. B-side is again a parting shot at the other labels that tried to sign them. The rumour at the time was they were signed for a million pounds!! (it turned out to be a not untidy £350,000)
Parlophone – 12 SSS 2
|A||21st Century Boy (T.V. Mix)||6:09|
|B||Buy EMI (£4,000,000 Mix)||7:24|
Sigue Sigue Sputnik – Massive Retaliation (US 12″)
The next release was only released in America, to push sales of the album , “Flaunt It”. A change of sound and tempo, more of a hip-hop tempo and a more complex layering of sounds, amazing for 1986 and probably wanting to emulate Art Of Noise. Again Moroder is producing and co-writing, the mixes are provided by sound wizard, Brian Reeves. B-side “Teenage Thunder” see’s the band return to their Rock ‘n Roll roots and a cut from the album, not sure about that tinny bass and organ percussion though. Degville does his best punk vocals.
Manhattan Records – V-56037
|A1||Massive Retaliation (The Super Massive UK Remix)||5:46|
|A2||Massive Retaliation (The Massive Edit)||3:52|
|B1||Massive Retaliation (Shut Up Dub Remix)||3:40|
With vocals reminding me of Billy Idol via Simple Minds. I have to admit I’d not really heard anything by this Irish band comprising of the duo of Pat O’Donnell (the lead vocalist and keyboardist; who went on to be in “The 4 Of Us” and “God Is An Astronaut”) and Steve Belton (Guitars; who went on to be “Cry Before Dawn”). A rocky New Wave sound produced by Brian Tench, with a synth sound from late Human league and screeching guitars, a weird mix for 1987. B-side is an album track, “Open Up”, very Simple Minds with a bit of Ultravox thrown in.
China Records – WOKX 7
|A||Feel It Now (Extended Mix)|
|B1||Feel It Now (7″ Version)|
The last of the Go West buses have now left Vinyl Central Station. This was released in 1986 and was the next 12″ single after Bangs & Crashes remix album. Same recipe/formula and slick synth-rock rather than synthpop. Comes with a quirky, instrumental B-side “XL5” which is the most electronic that I’ve heard him.
NEW LINK 2017!!!!
Chrysalis – GOWX 4
|A||True Colours (The Snake Charmer Mix)|
The original 1983 release of this dance floor, electro funk classic. I forgot how very synthetic it was, the remix by Lewis Hayes, strips it down to the basics with the synths really giving it some edge. Enough said.
Master Mix – 12 CHE 8401
|A||I Found Lovin’ (Remix)||7:10|
|B1||I Found Lovin’ (LP Version)|
|B2||I Found Lovin’ (Dub)|
Proper disco stuff now from 1979 and the classic UK funk band, Central Line. (“Walking Into Sunshine” and “Nature Boy”).
(Follower Disconob who has a blog here https://discosnob.com/ should love this!)
This was their debut release and features the fast and funky A-side with the slower, jazzier B-side “Summer Romance.”
Where’s my jumpsuit?
Mercury – MERX 4
|A||Sticks And Stones||5:31|
More obscure stuff with some Electric Boogaloo, tapping into the 1983 craze…. Hula-Hooping (I kid you not!) Originally a Flexi-Disc record which was given away to promote KP Hula Hoops crisps!!! Camp, electro funk with more than a tinge of disco on the B-side.
Form an orderly download queue.
Tivoli Records – TIVT 3
|A||Loop De Loop (With The Peppermint Hoop)||5:21|
|B||Running Around In Circles||3:56|
Another “Who Are These?” moment. Definitely for fans of INXS and Love & Rockets (probably why Mike bought it) and more in line with upsurge of psychedelic rock with the likes of bands like Jellyfish, Gene Loves Jezebel. From 1987 and mixing up dance beats and rock sensibilities these were a bit of a cult band in L.A, Rick Parker the singer is now a producer/ mixer . The “New York Mix” and “Heavy Mix” were provided by Justin Strauss and Murray Ellias. Steve Churchyard, (The Stranglers producer) provides the “Psycho Dance” mix, the best of the bunch.
B-side is a live track called ,”Beneath The Joke” goth rock and sounding like The Mission! Pioneering stuff from an underrated band.
EMI-Manhattan Records – V-19263
|A1||Contradiction (New York Mix)||6:38|
|A2||Contradiction (Psycho Dance Mix)||6:42|
|B1||Contradiction (Heavy Mix)||6:21|
|B2||Contradiction (Dub Mix)||6:05|
|B3||Beneath The Joke||4:03|