Saturday, August 18, 2012

songs from nineties band that sound a lot better heard randomly on the car radio today than they did at the time







Time, the great colander, sifting through the shite

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

always forget how disappointing Be Bop Deluxe are

over the decades tried several separate occasions to get into them

fooled by:

great name

cool LP and song itles (Futurama, Drastic Plastic, Live! In the Air Age, "Jet Silver and the Dolls Of Venus" / Teenage Archangel" / Between the Worlds" / "Kiss of Light" / "Hot Valves EP" / "Futurist Manifesto" / "Electrical Language" / "Surreal Estate")

cool or at least kinda-cool covers

great set of influences and reference points - Bowie-Roxy-Crimson-Floyd-Hammill-Zappa; glam meets prog; science fiction

Bill Nelson went on to do Red Noise, his pretty-cool New Wave self-make-over, and then, interesting-ish solo stuff also in a New Wave/synthpop vein

it seems so promising

but the reality music really is "exquisite nothing" (P.Morley)

not even that exquisite












here's a few from Bill N's New Wave days



haven't felt the urge to listen to Prince in almost twenty years

but for no apparent reason i'm "on it" again, big time



i did not know that "Pop Life" was actually a hit in America (it was a conspicuous failure in the UK)...  can u imagine this playing on the radio?  wild!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Sonja Kristina of Curved Air fits in this category of female vocalist i once blogged about as That Voice...  a type exemplified by Grace Slick, Dorothy Moskowitz of The United States of America, and Lynn Carey who did the lead voice for the Carrie Nations songs on the film soundtrack of Beyond the Valley of the Dolls, but for the actual soundtrack album itself was replaced by another female singer who wasn't quite as powerful



"That Voice" meaning a vocal style that was white and strong (or maybe strident is the word) ... clear, sustained, piercing...   not obviously influenced by rhythm-and-blues or soul or jazz, but more like a mixture of folk and show tunes that adds up to something else altogether.... a hint of witchy mystery...  feminine but forbidding...

Sonja K was a folky sort of singer but she'd also been in Hair

(when i was reading old music papers researching Rip It Up, i remember a swipe at Siouxsie and the Banshees saying that they were just Curved Air with a different hair cut -- but that seems like a cheap and also inaccurate shot)



the Continent is probably full of That Voice candidates -- Mariska Veres of Shocking Blue (especially on "Love Buzz")...   Edna Béjarano of The Rattles as in "The Witch"...  Annisette Hansen in Savage Rose










Nico would be That Voice but her voice isn't strong enough in pure power terms.... there has to be a sense of formidable and imposing and a little bit intimidating, even...

Stevie Nicks is almost in the zone but a  tad too husky, too rock'n'roll gritty..

More Sonja K!





The lead singer in Heart approaches it, via a transgendering of the already epicene Robert Plant

Here's some further thoughts I had on this subject on blissblog back in the day, duplicating some of the very same points made above! if nothing else the way my brain works is a consistent process...

varied pedigree, this Francis Monkman

Curved Air, 801 (the Manzanera-Eno-et al supergroup), library records galore, Sky...

and this great soundtrack



but Sky was his biggest success, another supergroup, this tune got to number 5 UK


always wanted to get into Curved Air but have never quite managed it


i wanna hear FM's solo album Energism which contains this as used in various tv programs for theme reasons



and then there's all the library stuff











another demo synth thing with FM


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Sunday, August 5, 2012

under-rated band, Missing Persons




great vocalist, Dale Bozzio, like an American Clare Grogan almost





another New Wave American outfit that made no impression whatsoever in the U.K. (well, not until they stopped being New Wave in this case and did a horrible, huge-hit power ballad AOR type thingy whose title escapes me) was Berlin... like Missing Persons, they're on the radio still, a lot, usually with this tune ...



unlike Missing Persons (an obviously proficient and seasoned rock band who'd gone Noo Wave... indeed some of them supposedly played with Zappa!), Berlin were fully-fledged synth-pop...  indeed one of the few American examples that can really rank with the U.K. and European outfits of the time (I mean, Our Daughter's Wedding, gimme a break... and as for early Ministry...)

on "The Metro", Berlin are a bit like an American Visage...   vapid Europhilia at its most alluring



this


led me to this, for some reason



did either do anything else as good?




they did a great, or maybe simply enjoyably unlikely, cover version of Stranglers's "Toiler on the Sea", for a John Peel session, this was their pre-pop period i think....








something about driving away from home reminds me of 



or rather something about 'ballad of bobby pyn' always reminded me of 'driving away from home'

members of it's immaterial were formerly in echt-New Wave group The Yachts, who i somehow never heard at the time. (and one of them went on to be in the Christians, am I right)