Tunes From Oz And Beyond – Part 23 (Mid 80’s)


Men At Work ‎– Everything I Need (US 12″)

A late release from the Men from 1985. Produced by Bob Clearmountain,  it gets a short remix by Thompson & Barbiero. By the time of the 3rd album the end was in sight. Three original members remained with Strykert leaving right after the release of ‘Two Hearts’, leaving just two (Hay and Ham). Although pretty decent by all counts it was overproduced and uneven compared to the first two (which are all time classics) – maybe blame Bob.

The remix adds vocoder (?!) in the intro, onto loud drums and the chugging guitar. It still retains the melancholic atmosphere of a band coming to an end.

Columbia ‎– 44 05216 folder

A Everything I Need (Extended Version) 4:35
B Everything I Need (Single Version) 3:35


Models ‎– Cold Fever (US 12″)

The mid 80’s saw Models in full “seize America” mode. Where they Australian or American ?

A 4 tracker the 12″ contains a live version of previous hit “Out Of Mind Out Of Sight”  recorded live at Melbourne Concert Hall.

The main track is given a remix by Julian Mendelsohn. Love that sequencer running alongside the bass line. I like the shivery drum break.

“I Hear Motion” is also here in its rare, extended form. Mixed by Nick Launey, it has that synth bass hook throughout. An exclusive mix for the US.

Bonus track is the short, rocky “Preacher From The Black Lagoon.” A live favourite, it has synth horns and a riffy hook.

Geffen Records ‎– 0-20494 SAM_2407

A1 Cold Fever (Extended Mix) 6:39
A2 Out Of Mind Out Of Sight (“Live” Version) 4:00
B1 I Hear Motion (Extended Mix) 6:27
B2 Preacher From The Black Lagoon 2:57


Martin Plaza ‎– Plaza Suite (UK Vinyl LP)

More Mid-80’s and more artists with M in. The debut album from the voice of Mental As Anything, Martin Plaza; using plenty of synths over his distinctive croon.

Multi instrumentalist Plaza deals with most of the instruments but also playing on the album was Aussie keyboard and synth Rick Chadwick, David Jones adding some precussion and Tony “Spoons” Buchanan adding saxophone.

It does go into the style of Mental As Anything in places but there is a lot of catchy songs, “Best Foot Forwards” blends rock and tech quite well. “Chalk And Cheese” has tight drum machines and an XTC groove. It does gets a bit Country Rock towards the end, a bit weird with all the synths in the background.

Epic ‎– EPC 57005 SAM_0419

A1 Pit Stop
A2 I Could Be So Good
A3 Concrete & Clay
A4 Out The Door
A5 Best Foot Forward
B1 Miss You Like Mad
B2 Chalk & Cheese
B3 Use Me All Over
B4 Rollerina
B5 Bats & Balls


Boom Crash Opera ‎– Boom Crash Opera (US Vinyl LP)

Melbourne New Wave band Boom Crash Opera released this debut LP in 1987. The line-up was; Drums, Vocals – Peter Maslen, Guitar, Bass, Vocals – Richard Pleasance, Guitar, Vocals – Peter Farnan, Keyboards – Greg O’Connor and Lead Vocals – Dale Ryder.

So the sound reminds me a bit like King via Tears For Fears, with a studio crew of Alex Sadkin, Steve Brown and Will Gosling giving it a bit of a Funk Rock edge with a “live” feel. All hooky chorus with plenty of singalong chants, e.g. “Great Wall”

Highlights include the moody “Her Charity” and the acoustic strum of “Caught Between Two Towns” (TFF all over this) It can get a bit INXS in places, not a bad thing.

Warner Bros. Records ‎– 1-25636 SAM_8154

A1 Gap That Opened 4:00
A2 Hands Up In The Air 3:52
A3 Love Me To Death 4:25
A4 City Flat 4:06
A5 Her Charity 4:58
B1 Sleeping Time 4:22
B2 Great Wall 3:49
B3 Bombshell 3:47
B4 Caught Between Two Towns 3:27
B5 Too Hot To Think 5:24


Models ‎– Models’ Media (Aussie Vinyl LP)

Their last album that only got an Australian release in 1986. The final line-up was ; Bass, Vocals – James Freud, Drums, Percussion – Barton Price, Guitar, Vocals – Sean Kelly, Keyboards, Vocals – Roger Mason, Saxophone – James Valentine and GuestVocals – Wendy Matthews.

Produced by Mark Opitz and Julian Mendelsohn it shines in that mid 80’s production. A bit of a forgotten LP, it has some great track. Love the drama of “Hold On” and the Beatle-eque “Bitter Years” and the epic closer “Ghostworld”

Mushroom ‎– RML 53216 SAM_9283

A1 Evolution 4:02
A2 Let’s Kiss 3:31
A3 Hold On 4:27
A4 Beast O’ Mine 4:01
A5 Shootin’ Train 4:06
B1 Build It Up 3:45
B2 Bitter Years 3:39
B3 Sky Went Grey 3:22
B4 I Had A Premonition 4:36
B5 Ghostworld 5:41

Oops left out from previous Oz post


Moving Pictures – Matinee (Aussie Vinyl LP)

Another couple of M’s. From 1983 and the polished AOR sound of Moving Picture. Guitars wail and piano is put to the front of the mix.

Going into near Meatloaf territory (“Where They Belong”) and Genesis (“Marianne”)

Great stuff!

Wheatley Records ‎– WRLP-1007 SAM_7266

A1 Back To The Streets 3:27
A2 Judo Intellectuals 4:04
A3 Goldrush 3:30
A4 Pleasure And Pain 3:06
A5 Walk Tall 4:04
B1 Where They Belong 3:48
B2 Marianne 3:41
B3 We Share Our Love 2:54
B4 Sisters Of Mercy 5:21
B5 Back To Blues And Booze 3:11

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