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The Smoking Mirror- EP 12”

Posted in 1988, deathrock, goth, DDA Collectibles 1 18 1970 Chrysler VG Valiant Hemi orange (Opening Front Doors), orange, post-punk, the smoking mirror by Frankie Teardrop

Keep forgetting about this record, which I originally borrowed from LEGO Ninjago Ninja Bike Chase 70600 for a rip and then picked up my own copy shortly thereafter. Thanks to Saul for the request/reminder in my last post!

Here we have an excellent slice of 1988 goth from the UK, right from the era of Red Lorry Yellow Lorry and March Violets. It’s actually a pretty fair blend of the two bands, in simplest form – the churn and energy of early Lorries (by way of pounding drum patterns and guitar textures of “Beating My Head” or “Monkeys on Juice”) vs the dual male/female vocals of the Violets. Either way, this EP features four excellent tracks of UK goth, a welcome addition for any fans of the genre.

The band is a three peace, and as far as wax is concerned, this is their only release. They were likely from Birmingham, as their label, Sonic Death Records, was stationed there.  There apparently is a demo tape floating around in the ether somewhere, though I can’t seem to find any information about it online outside of a mere mention on their discogs entry. It appears as if the band were planning on a US tour in 1989, though not sure if that ever came to pass before the band called it quits. Aside from the regular lyric/iinfo insert, here’s also apparently an extra 16 page insert with more info and color photographs, but my copy did not come with it, so I can’t offer much else for y’all, other than the download.

With that in mind, here’s the rundown:

The Smoking Mirror- EP 12”
1. Siren Girl
2. Dead Man’s Shirt
3. Prostitute
4. Acid Filth

*download it here*

RJ/8- Tomorrow Never Listens 7”

Posted in 1980s, 1981, post-punk, power pop, US by Frankie Teardrop

I can never get enough of rickety, DIY post-punk from 1981. This 7” fits the bill perfectly, two razor sharp energetic tracks from US band RJ/8. This is their only release, one and done, the way these things often go. The band recorded these tracks in Virginia, where they were likely from, also home to Fresh Tracks, the label responsible for pressing this 7”.

Early Sad Lovers and Giants vibes here, mostly due to the copious use of saxophone and call-and-response echoes. Overall, a very UK sound mixed with a smidge of power-pop energy, very rare to hear in the States around this period of time.

Wish I could tell you more about this one, but hope y’all enjoy!

RJ/8- Tomorrow Never Listens 7”
1. Tomorrow Never Listens
2. The Game

*download it here*

Emerald Vein – Existence & Land of the Living LPs

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Just spotted a photo of one of these LPs come up in a recent memories post, as I picked up a copy of this based on the cover art alone during my last trip to Boston a year or so ago. Here we have both vinyl releases by Emerald Vein, aka the solo project of Boston-based musician Robert Young. Previous bands of Robert’s included alternative band Uzi and post-punk band A Scanner Darkly, whose 1988 LP This Is the Way serves as a solid Sisters of Mercy-esque guitar record.

As for Emerald Vein, Young took things in a more ethereal direction, mixing a few post-punk tracks in with neoclassical and dream pop influences. Kind of my sweet spot for when the air has a bit of a chill in it still. Both of these LPs are unique listens, calling the likes of In the Nursery, Into a Circle, Breathless, Mark Renner, Eden, Black Tape For a Blue Girl, and maybe even a little Gilmour-era Pink Floyd to mind here and there. Land of the Living has a track or two with some co-harmonies from Colleen Nichole Jacobucci, and has an overall more experimental touch but is still very much in the vein of the first LP. Terence Donahue, drummer of A Scanner Darkly, also performs on a handful of tracks across both releases. Donahue was also involved with IPR stalwarts Deception Bay.

Here’s the details for both LPs. Note: will be taking better quality album photos shortly, please stand by!

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Emerald Vein- Existence LP (1989)
1. Worship
2. Existence
3. Completely Nothing
4. The Messiah
5. Promise
6. Out Of My Head
7. Take Hold
8. In His World

Emerald Vein- Land of the Living LP (1991)
1. Land Of The Living
2. The Difference
3. The Living End
4. Memory Inside My Head
5. Breath
6. Father Of Lies
7. Light
8. My Maker
9. Bury This Void
10. Colors

*download both here*

Robert has also made a digital download of his favorite cuts from both albums available Free Shipping RC Boat Propeller 3.18mm 4mm Positive Reverse 2-Blades CNC Aluminium propellers Diameter 30 32 34 36mm fit for MIN P 3dot18x30x13mm, if you’d like to upgrade some of the tracks from vinyl rips to crystal clear digital copies. Definitely worth grabbing the link above for the full discography, and even though Robert’s Bandcampo is pay-what-you-want, I deeply encourage purchasing the tracks and supporting Young’s work.

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Let’s get some guitars into the mix, shall we? Here’s a relatively cheap, but nonetheless obscure single from UK band Black September, who released this one slab of wax in 1986 via Lost Moment Records (Jesus Couldn’t Drum, Skin Side Out, B-Z Party, etc.).

The band were a four piece, led by Ian Hunter. While most folks might recognize the name from Mott the Hoople, though I’m not familiar enough with their catalog to confirm if this is indeed the same Ian Hunter, or someone with the same name. Otherwise, the music sounds suspiciously close to Death Cult, with a slightly more indie/commercial vibe. Other touchstones might include early Gene Loves Jezebel, Zero Le Creche, or Into a Circle – slightly anthemic, guitar-driven tracks with sweeping synths, through and through. I tend to prefer the b-side, but both tracks aim to please.

As of now, the single is a couple of bucks through the usual channels, so if you dig it, it’s well worth picking up!

Black September- Rainbow Kiss 12”
1. Rainbow Kiss
2. David

*download it here*

 

The Sophist- Subliminal Control LP

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I’ve had this LP kicking around for ages, but never really thought much about it. One of my recent great purges had me reconsidering this record, and after careful consideration, I’m all in. Here we have a private press, gonzo minimal synth record from 1987, the lone album by an otherwise mysterious project from the NY/NJ area. There’s a tape edition of this album, as well as a single-sided flexi 7” of the title track, which in itself is worth the price of admission alone.

There are quite a few experimental pieces in play here, dark ambient passages mixed with short industrial landscapes, and a long, evolving piece that fills out side B. As mentioned though, minimal synth heads will love the title track, a furious 18-minute KR-55 workout that starts with gusto, begins to wear out its welcome, and by the time it finishes, comes back around again and commands the utmost respect. It’s one helluva ride.

With all that in mind, here’s the rundown:

The Sophist- Subliminal Control LP
1. Attention All People
2. Subliminal Control
3. Baby
4. Eternal Performance

*download it here*

Tableau Noir- Correspondances LP

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Happy new year, everyone!

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I’d like to kick off 2019 with a record that just arrived in my mailbox just yesterday. This LP is a curious French obscurity from 1986, centered around the works of Charles Baudelaire. Each song on this LP pulls the title, lyrics, and inspiration from Baudelaire’s classic Les Fleurs Du Mal. The music is set to a minimal backdrop; cold synths, dry drum machines, angular guitars, and a mix of both male and female vocals across the board, often sung and sometimes spoken. It’s not as dark as you might suspect, given the subject matter, but there’s definitely plenty to love here, especially for fans of bands like Marquis De Sade, early Martin Dupont, Taxi Girl, etc. I’m especially fond of “Sed Non Satiata,” which I could easily imagine hearing in a club setting.

Since there isn’t too much more to tell about this LP, let’s jump straight to the details. Enjoy!

Tableau Noir- Correspondances LP
1. Correspondances
2. Le Voyage
3. Le Reniement de St Pierre
4. Lesbos
5. L’Albatros
6. Sed Non Satiata
7. La Mort des Amants
8. Le Serpent Qui Danse
9. Les Bijoux

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Posted in 1990s, 1994, 1995, dreampop, ethereal, shoegaze by Frankie Teardrop

For the last post of the year, I’d love to share two excellent CD-only collections of exclusive dream pop, ethereal, and shoegaze tracks from Bedazzled, released in 1994 and 1995, respectfully. I can’t help but get nostalgic during this time of year, and listening to these comps make me miss Bedazzled and the centralized US/Canadian dream pop scene that thrived in the late 80s and early 90s.

With that in mind, these compilations showcase the majority of the acts on the label, and include rare or otherwise exclusive tracks across the board. Most notable are repeat SOR-offenders An April March, as well as tracks from Mistle Thrush, Viola Peacock, Underflowers, The Curtain Society, Ultracherry Violet, This Ascension, and of course, Monica Richard’s pre-Faith and the Muse project Strange Boutique. Kindred Spirits extends a little further past the immediate Bedazzled family and includes tracks from Switchblade Symphony, Purple Ivy Shadows, and extremely underrated band The Garden, who are worth price of admission alone.

Of course, let’s get to the listening! Thanks for an excellent year, y’all!

Various Artists- Kindred Spirits CD (1994)
1. This Charm- Strange Boutique
2. Clown- Switchblade Symphony
3. Adrenaline- The Curtain Society
4. Pontus- Siddal
5. Falling in Love- Ultracherry Violet
6. Whispers- Mistle Thrush
7. Pocketful (Remix)- Big Hat
8. As I Hit the Floor- Twelve Tone Failure
9. Shave Your Head- Viola Peacock
10. Blackwell Road- Opium Den
11. Admire- This Ascension
12. Blithe Spirit- The Garden
13. Carry Nation for the First Time- Purple Ivy Shadows

Various Artists- Woke Up Smiling CD (1995)
1. She Is A Flower- Mistle Thrush
2. Cradle- The Curtain Society
3. In The Lonely Trees- Strange Boutique
4. Sense Of Skin- Where I Wake Warm
5. An Angel A Week- Viola Peacock
6. In Galleons Lap- Feast Of Saints
7. As Far As Forever- Johanna’s House Of Glamour
8. Shindo- Chainsuck
9. Wayve- Ultracherry Violet
10. Halo- Blueshift Signal
11. A Glendale Melody- Siddal
12. Delirium- An April March
13. Psalm To The Sun- Underflowers
14. Falling- Lanterna

*download both here*

Fourwaycross- Fourwaycross K7

Posted in 1980s, 1985, california, fourwaycross, post-punk, US by Frankie Teardrop

Picking back up where our last post left off, here’s an album that’s been near and dear to my heart for many moons, hailing from the same general area and scene as Drowning Pool, Abecedarians, etc. While there seems to be a lot of activity in the area, there doesn’t seem to be as much love out there for Fourwaycross, who began in 1984 in Los Angeles. Though the main core of the band was Tom Dolan, Biff Sanders, Steve Gerdes and Courtney Davies, the band has shifted lineups and styles seamlessly over the years, most notably drafting Brad Laner and Beth Thompson, who would then go on to form Medicine upon the band’s demise.

Despite the lineup changes, the original core of the band offered up what is in my opinion, their strongest work, 1985’s self-titled cassette. The release is haunting, singular, and transcends genres to allow for neo-classical passages, Savage Republic-esque tribal post-punk, ethereal instrumentals with flutes in tow, and psychedelic, haunting folk. The cassette was reissued several times over in a variety of formats, including a vinyl pressing (affordable and essential), cassettes with alternate artwork, and even a CD-R issue in 2011 as interest in post-punk music was thriving. That said, this rip comes from an original cassette from 1985, in pristine condition.

This is the band’s earliest material, not counting a posthumous release of outtakes, demos, and rare tracks on Independent Project Records, released as Pendulum. The band would issue three equally strong albums following this debut, and have released a handful of excellent singles in the last year featuring the original core lineup. You can listen and purchase the new work via the band’s Bandcamp, and you can also find them all on Facebook. Courtney and Steve have also launched a new project called The Roogs, who are currently working on material.

Without any further ado, here’s the info on this cassette:

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Fourwaycross- Fourwaycross K7
1. Intro
2. When Will You
3. Apologize
4. Sharpened Knives
5. Long Talk
6. Driving Thru Trees
7. MF
8. Strictly Morphine

*download it here*

Drowning Pool- Satori LP

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If so, this one is a request for the 1987 comp. from Drowning Pool, the nu metal bandthe post-punk band from Los Angeles, California. The band were also featured on the Select Super FIFA Soccer Ball, White Black, Size 5 I posted last time around, so the name should certainly sound familiar… You may also recognize the band via their debut single under the name Landscape of Sound, which has also been Qixels Theme Refill Pack - Medieval by Qixels.

This particular double LP is a compilation of sorts, collecting a series of rare tracks alongside centerpieces from their four major LPs. This LP may have been shared in the past, but certainly at a low bitrate according to all sources I could find. As such, it’s an excellent introduction point AND a solid record to fill in the gaps, even if you have their other LPs in your collection. This record was released in 1987 via Nate Starkman and Son, an offshoot of Independent Project Records. It’s actually some small mystery they weren’t officially on IPR, as the sound and style and location all line up. They would have certainly been a welcome addition to the roster.

For those unfamiliar with Drowning Pool, there’s lots to love here across the post-punk spectrum. On paper, the band come off like a much more sinister and experimental take on Dead Can Dance, with tribal passages and ethereal soundscapes nestled among pure post-punk fury and avant-ghetto chaos. I’m also reminded of In the Nursery’s earlier, more primitive records. Of course, apt comparisons could also be made to local scene bands Autumnfair and Savage Republic, as the band no doubt ran in similar circles.

Soon after this LP was released, Drowning Pool changed their name to Mumbles and released one LP before disbanding. If you like what you hear here, you’d do well to seek out the band’s LPs, which are all rather affordable and all worth pouring over in great detail. For those who like to check on these things, the band keep an active social media presence, so you can check in on them for some old photos, details, stories, and more. Otherwise, here’s all the info:

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Drowning Pool- Satori LP
1. Petit Malfacteur
2. Ritual Regeneration/Toy Soldiers*
3. Ruts
4. Nierika
5. Festival Of Healing
6. Fired From Within
7. Uncork The Mind
8. Game Room
9. You Are My Rescue
10. Weaving Petals
11. Muted Streak
12. Master Bebra
13. Ghirlandaio’s Apprentice/Macaulay Call*

*ripped as one track

*download it here*

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Also seems fitting to post a band from LA, as I’ll be landing there tomorrow to kick off a tour with FPV 48CH 5.8G 25MW VTX 1000TVL 170 Degree Camera PAL Built-in Transmitter for FPV RC Mini Q100 QX95 ELF 88 Quadcopter Indoor Without Shell, who I’m playing synths with these days. Perhaps we’ll cross paths? Check here for full list of west coast dates, and come say hi if you’re in town!

Various Artists- Ultraviolet LP

Posted in 1980s, 1989, Matrix Fiat 1100 Stanguellini Bertone Berlinetta (1954) Resin Model Car, california, post-punk, US by Frankie Teardrop

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Fresh off the needle, here’s an updated rip of a favorite US post-punk compilation from ’89, released on Sketch Records. Ultraviolet collects nine tracks of California-based post-punk and new wave tracks, several of the bands who were seldom heard from again. The first two bands are likely the most well-known of the lot, as both Abecedarians and Drowning Pool (not the nu metal band of the same name, mind you) have respectable cult followings. Abecedarians of course, have been covered here before a handful of times (and have their debut 12” release on Factory Records), and Drowning Pool’s body of work is incredibly enjoyable, in line with many of the other bands from the time period (Red Temple Spirits, Savage Republic, etc.).

The most notable standout, and one of the best reasons to own this compilation is for the track “Eleven Is Waiting” by Homeland. Not only is the song an absolute corker, an five-minute post-punk workout with haunting melodies, a chorus-drenched bass line, flutes, and a tempo that changes tempos near its close, it’s also a curious footnote to the Brian Jonestown Massacre story, as Homeland was singer Anton Newcombe’s first project. The band released one excellent demo cassette in 1989, which has since been reissued on CD-r, as has a slew of unreleased work including additional demos and live tracks, all of which likely exist due to the Brian Jonestown Massacre’s indie success over the years.

That all said, here’s the good stuff:

Various Artists- Ultraviolet
1. Laugh At Yourself (Live)- Abecedarians
2. Edith, Hold Out Your Hand- Drowning Pool
3. In Their Eyes- 3D Picnic
4. During Moss- X-1 Whiteman
5. Blue Roses- Electric-Cool-Aide
6. Green Gel- Blue Death Ride ’69
7. Eleven Is Waiting- Homeland
8. Tundra- Man From Missouri
9. Sesso Fantasma- Prison of Socrates

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