Justin and Jesika are Alder And Elius. The 2 songs on this 7" are electonica instrumentals with samples used in a subtle way (lo-fi electro w/found vocal sounds). I do not know anything about this duo. The Skam web site has no written text at all. It has braille text and sounds. I have heard that this single is very hard to find, so I'd say you'd be best to either shell out for it at Twisted Village (the only place I've seen it) or listen to WZBC and tape it at home!
September 26, 2000
After just receiving the Mercury Prize in the UK for his 'Hour Of The Bewilderbeast" record, Damon Gough is truly becoming the hot property everyone proclaimed his to be early this summer. These two CD singles are the second set from that record. Backing on the original version of "Disillusion" is by another Manchester band, The Doves. This CD1 of the set has two new songs on it as well. "A Bottle Of Tears" is a three minute country bopping tune with an acoustic guitar center, full vocals throughout, and an old time sound that reminds me of the heyday of the Boston band The Lune. Check The Lune's 'On the Cutting Room Floor' on Aesthetics Records. "Wrecking The Stage" is an electric instrumental that cooks out in it's 2:10 length.
CD2 of this set has the original version of "Disillusion" (as CD1 does). It also features 2 mixes of that song by newcomers that have been highly touted by many who are already familiar with them. Blue States just released their 'Nothing Changes Under The Sun' full length on Memphis Industries. Blue States is Londoner Andy Dragazis. After the Broadcast and Fridge remixes of the last Badly Drawn Boy I was a bit underwhelmed by the mixes on this single, but I have come to really like them with listening. The second mix is by Black Lodge, the band named after theplace in (David Lynch's)Twin Peaks. Black Lodge have out a 7" and a 10" on Acu-Recs (Acupuncture Records). Niether of these releases contain any info on the artist or sleeves with images, and I haven't been able to find any info on them on the web. All I know is that Sandra Barrett identified one of the songs on Black Lodge's 7" as somewhat of a version of the Disney song "Elephants On Parade". Black Lodge's mix has the percussive cut n' paste sound of a Chic record like they have on their own tracks on their singles. Both Blue State's and Black Lodge's mixes leave the vocals in and keep the song much more intact than Broadcast and Fridge did on their mixes last single. Badly Drawn Boy have a great looking site where you can hear all these songs for yourself.
3 new songs that sound just like you expect them to. Helen Love are from Swansea in Wales, but they sound nothing like the other Welsh bands you know. Helen Love eternally sound like a female vocaled casiopop version of The Ramones. The thing is that their sound really works, and their enthusiasm brings you right in on it. New this time is that The Cuban Boys co-wrote "Atomic Beat Boy", and that "Big Pink Candyfloss Haircut" is basically an electronic instrumental with just a bit of vocodered vocals tucked in the back. I don't think Helen Love have even done an instrumental before. Pretty soon Helen Love are set to release their debut LP. They already have two records out, but those are just compilations of their 7"s. The A-side of this single is really great. With songs like this I will not get tired of them for the forseeable future. Really fine!
I may have gotten burned with the GFSU full length last week (WZBC DJ Pip added it to the playlist from a serviced copy), but I know I am safe with this single. The feature of this 7" that has me adding it to WZBC is the great B-side it contains. "Boy" is extremely distinctive and may be better than many of the tracks I like best on the full length. It has a really cool percussion sound and neat background vocals. It is the first song since the LP which is not mixed by Alex Empire. Lolita Storm may seem as one dimensional as Helen Love, but just like Helen Love they manage to suck you in with the vitality of their singular vision. Both songs are great. Check out the LP as well!
Mellow are a great band from Paris that I had read a lot about but had never gotten to hear till recently. This single has three drastically different takes on the same song. They are only recognizable as kin by the merest threads. First is the original 3:18 version of the song. Remember the recent Tahiti 80? They are another French band who have a vocalist who sounds amazingly like Colin Blunstone of The Zombies. Mellow mix that sound with The Beatles and The Gentle People to come up with a pretty unique take on music. Next up we have the Nick McCabe mix. Nick McCabe was the guitarist in Verve. He gives a six and a half minute instrumental mix that sounds like something which might have been on the Foundry Records compilation 'Will Our Children Thank Us'. The last song is a six and a half minute instrumental Andy Votel mix. Andy Votel is half owner of Twisted Nerve records along with Damon Gough. He releases 12"s on Manchester's Grand Central and Fat City Records, and does not have a full length of his own yet. Andy Votel has done the best mixes on Badly Drawn Boy songs and has a great ear for sound. His mix here is downtempo somewhere between France's Kid Loco and Wash DC's Thievery Corporation.
Metamatics is Lee Anthony Jude Norris. At WZBC we have his 1997 "a metamatics production" CD on Clear Records and his "Neo Ouija" full length on Hydrogen Dukebox. This is his second LP for that label. In the liner of his first CD he sent respects to Can, Eno, Zawinul, Holger Czukay, Depeche Mode, David Sylvian (Japan), John Foxx, The Human League, Kraftwerk, and Frippatronics. A pretty strong list of grandparents for an electronic music artist. Spook Tinsel Shoal is a very likable disc. It sooths in a thoroughly modern way. The sound is clean and warm. His sound is the professional production answer to the bedroom electonica aesthetic.
I was sad to miss The Adventures in Stereo, Chamber Strings, and Waxwings show in Boston last month, and sad to miss seeing Bobsled's Bob Salerno. I am glad though that Adventures in Stereo (on Bobsled here in the US) and Noonday Underground seem to have gotten over the bickering that had taken away from both of their appeals (The leader of Noonday Underground was a member of an early Adventures in Stereo and they had trouble with a seperating line after he left). This US released single is Noonday Undergrounds first domestic record. It shows that Noonday Underground have tons of power and confidence. The single is the second really nice colored vinyl one this week (the Alder Andelius 7" has a really attractive grey speckled wax, this Noonday Underground single is purple). I know colored wax should be no big thing, but combined with great music and a nice sleeve it makes you feel like you got something special for your money. "When You Leave" has really strong soulful female vocals and "The Hooded Claw" is an instrumental that is half 'Blow Up' and half The Come Ons.
(From the GSL site) "Straddling the line somewhere between the flash of the New York Dolls and the trash of The Gories, Starlite Desperation injects a heavy dose of old-school rock 'n' roll charisma into its swaggering live show. Adrian is the epitome of the skinny-legged, Jagger-esque frontman, and bassist Yasmine Smith, a go-go dancing wildgirl off-stage, resembles an impossibly bored Suzi Quatro onstage. Drummer Jeff Lepard, able to quaff a cold one with one hand and ride the hi-hat with the other, rounds it off with some perfect, sticks-in-the-air, rock-god kitsch". Guest Reviewer Martin: "I'm sure Make-Up fans have caught on to what has just grabbed my attention. Two tunes wet my whistle and get my foot-a-tappin'. Not very complex, and not the most original band you've heard, but I promise you won't be disappointed and future releases are looking even brighter. Rock Blues a go-go served on your favorite spastic format. "It's not brainless," my girlfriend says. That's good right?" And as for Sunshine, they are a Czech group which play a sound influenced by Hanoi Rocks and Jon Spencer. The songs by both bands are pretty good. I'll bet they'd be great bands live.