Friday, October 24, 2008

Various Artists: Ears to the Grindstone, Back to the Grindstone, Turn of the Grindstone LPs

Well, here are THREE compilations to round out this week. They are the three records in the "Grindstone" series on K.O. City Studios. THe label was set up by Andrew Szava-Kovats of Data Bank, Domnion, and Parade of Sinners, the latter two of whom appear on these comps.
These records are primarily electronic, divided between industrial, ambient, noise, experimental EBM, and more. There are tracks by groups like Arms of Someone New, Gelatinous Citizen, Conrad Schnitzler (a collaboration piece), Nomuzik, and many, many, many more.
The Gelatinous Citizen songs were ripped by Mutant-Sounds a while back; if you enjoyed those songs, you should probably like most of the songs here. All three are excellent records.

Various Artists: Ears to the Grindstone LP
1987, KO City Studios

A1 Parade Of Sinners Cover Your Ears
A2 Gelatinous Citizen Big Sound For Happy Cows
A3 Fact-22 Motivation
A4 Dominion They Came In Hordes
A5 Arms Of Someone New, The Next Year In Jerusalem
B1 Ferd Gamma Globulin
B2 Nomuzic The Chief Smiles
B3 Mental Anguish Where Demons Dwell
B4 David Prescott The Dreamer
B5 If, Bwana Blatant Non-Attempt

Click here to download EARS TO THE GRINDSTONE.

Various Artists: Back to the Grindstone LP
1988, KO City Studios

A1 Gelatinous Citizen Lust For Larvae
A2 Nomuzic Pay The Robots
A3 Industrious Fleas I'm Walkin'
A4 Fact TwentyTwo Permanent Green
A5 New Law Nightmare Ballad Of Doug Dangerous
B1 Dominion Voodoo Visions
B2 Lewis Francis Permutations
B3 David Prescott Lefty Improv #2
B4 Mental Anguish Long Trip Through A Short Hole
B5 Alien Planetscapes The Pseudo-Intellectual Art-Damage Boogie

Click here to download BACK TO THE GRINDSTONE.

Various Artists: Turn of the Grindstone LP
1989, KO City Studios

A1 Parade Of Sinners Speech
A2 Gelatinous Citizen Fighting The World
A3 Lewis Francis Vast Listening Audience
A4 Compound Torture With The Best
A5 New Law Nightmare Sleeping Standing Up
B1 New Carrollton / S.G.B.C. Chantilly Stomp
B2 Mental Anguish / Nomuzic Keep Down
B3 Viktimized Karcass The Heat Is Gone
B4 Curious Voltage Media Hunt
B5 David Prescott / Gen Ken Montgomery / Conrad Schnitzler Triangle Prelude

Click here to download TURN OF THE GRINDSTONE.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Various Artists: Music Biz Showcase '83 LP

Here is an obscure compilation from the UK called Music Biz Showcase '83. Appropriately, it was released in 1983. It features nine songs by nine very different bands. I believe they were from London, as a few songs were recorded live at "The Fridge", which was a London venue. As far as I know, most bands never released anything else. Some of the highlights include "Vegetarians Don't Eat Meat", a minimalist female-sung post punk/new wave song in the vein of Au Pairs or perhaps The Raincoats; "Cut a Dash" by Academy, a very lo-fi synthpop song; "Eleanor Rigby" by Jeddah, a 100% earnest NWOBHM take on the Beatles classic; my favorite by far, however, is "Touch the Sky" by Life, a minimal electropop dancefloor killer. I played the song for my friend and he thought it sounded like a very early version of futurepop bands like VNV Nation, Beborn Beton, or Wolfsheim. So is it proto-futurepop? It's a great track, whatever it is. I don't know if this is the same "Life" that Andy Robinson (who would later become New Order's manager) was in, and who released a few singles on Factory Benelux. Can anyone compare the two "Life"s to give an answer?...

Various Artists: Music Biz Showcase LP
1983 Showcase Records
1. Cainers: Balloons
2. Football Results: Prophet of hate
3. Life: Touch the Sky
4. Bravura: Vegetarians Don't Eat Meat
5. Stolen Property: Imagination
6. Academy: Cut a Dash
7. Quiet Zone: Fragile Lives
8. Eclipse: An Obscure Love Song
9. Jeddah: Eleanor Rigby

Click here to download the album!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Various Artists: Paper Boats in Puddles LP

Here is a rarity that is desirable to collectors of indiepop, post punk, and Venus in Furs. It's a UK compilation from 1987 called Paper Boats in Puddles. It features quite a few bands that never released anything as well as a few more well-known artists. Girlie twee/indiepop band Queue Dance (who released a highly sought-after 7", I think) have two great songs here. There's a great Echo and the Bunnymen-inspired post punk song by the band This Colour. There's an exclusive track by quirky synthpop band Jesus Couldn't Drum. There are two dark songs by The Rev that sound like John Cooper Clarke reading poetry over synth and keyboards. And, most interestingly, there are two songs by the mysterious "The Little Legends", which was none other than Times, aka Venus in Furs! In fact, one song from this compilation (The Body Bank) later found its way onto a cd-r compilation of Venus in Furs rarities that Times self-released a few years ago. Also, the band Key Largo also featured Times and sounds like an instrumental Venus in Furs song as well... This is definitely a comp that's worth checking out!

Various Artists: Paper Boats in Puddles LP
1987, Whizz Records, UK
1. The Little Legends: Swamp Walk
2. The Rev: A Thin, Grey Space
3. Vava Voom: It's Because
4. Key Largo: New Arabian Nihts
5. Queue Dance: For a Moment
6. The Red Squares: Blue Peter
7. This Colour: In Sapphire Blue
8. Jennie Cruse: Don't You Think
9. The Little Legends: The Body Bank
10. The Rev: Tiny, Tinny Radio
11. Jesus Couldn't Drum: Captain Scarlet
12. Queue Dance: My Heart Belongs to Daddy

Click here to download the record!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Various Artists: First Cut: The Oxford Sound LP

Despite the fact that the cover image of this record makes it look like a compilation of bad 70s yacht rock, this is a record that has quite a few gems. The music is primarily synthpop and new wave. All bands were based in Oxford in the early 80s. Most of the bands are average to decent, but there are two standouts in my opinion: the excellent dancey Gang of Four-inspired new wave of the band Ears to the Ground (especially the song "Wash My Sins Away). Minimal synth fans will find both songs by Steve Zucker to be great - "Moving to Midnight" combines simple, pulsing synths with layers of ethereal female vocals, and "Walk Walk Away" is a melancholy underground analog synth classic with a crazy noisy synth freakout at the end. Yowza!

Various Artists: First Cut - The Oxford Sound
1983 Waterfront Records
1. Colour Me Pop: The Girl Who Shares My Shirts
2. Animal Grace: Truth
3. Ears to the Ground: Another Lonely Night With You
4. Love Attack: Open Up
5. Pressure: Leaving
6. Steve Zucker: Moving to Midnight
7. Animal Grace: She Cuts Me Up
8. Colour Me Pop: Lines
9. Love Attack: Love Attack
10. Pressure: Lifelike
11. Ears to the Ground: Wash My Sins Away
12. Steve Zucker: Walk, Walk Away

Click here to download the album!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Various Artists: 84 LP

Well, it's been a little while since I last shared an album here. But I'll make it up by sharing at least one album per day this week - all of them obscure, unknown, or rare compilations. Starting things off is a Yugoslavian compilation called "84". It was released in... drum roll... 1984. This record is most interesting for the inclusion of the first-ever tracks by early industrial/EBM band Borghesia. Also included on side 1 is an early Laibach song (only a half-minute long), as well as two excellent songs dark electro/industrial songs by 300,000 Verschiedene Krawalle. Side 2 is more in the punk, post punk, and oi vein, with lots of songs that feature angry shouting in Slovenian. This is a highly recommended record, so download it and enjoy!

Various Artists: 84 LP
1984 ZKP RTL (Založba kaset in plošč RTV Ljubljana)
A1 Borghesia: Divlja Horda
A2 Borghesia: Pokušaj
A3 Abbildungen Variete: Ishodišče Subjekta
A4 300.000 Verschiedene Krawalle: Policijski Hit
A5 300.000 Verschiedene Krawalle: TV Generacija
A6 Laibach: Uvod V Jaruzelskega
B1 O!Kult: Za Ljudi
B2 Otroci Socializma: Pesem Št. 3
B3 Otroci Socializma: Vojak
B4 Čao Pičke: Pesem B
B5 Čao Pičke: Kaj Ti Rečem
B6 Via Ofenziva: Minimalni Ritem
B7 Via Ofenziva: Proleter
B8 Via Ofenziva: Mrtvi Igralci

Click here to download the album!