Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Great City: Great City LP

On many occasions, I am drawn to buy a record based on the cover alone, and this LP by a band called Great City is a perfect example of that. The cover art immediately drew me in with its ridiculous avant garde design that could ONLY have come from the 80s. The photo of the two band members pushed to the graininess of a pencil drawing; the photo credit on the front cover in case you were wondering who took it (it was "Ava"); the addition of seemingly random cubes and spheres; the inexplicable telephone cord coil in one corner; the band name written twice on the cover for some
strange reason... It was almost too much. The credits did not provide any info about the instruments used so I coudn't really glean what it would sound like, but judging by the cover it had to be some variation of new wave.
In actuality, the record is an odd beast: very simplistic and repetitive drum programs, strong electronic rhythmic backbones, stabs of synthesizers, oddly questionable and funky bass playing, cheesy synth horns a la With
Sympathy-era Minstry, and artfully off-key female vocals. On my favorite songs (the last two tracks of each side) musically sound sort of like the bastard child of SSQ and Ludus, with a little bit of lite gothic flourishes thrown in (and the final song, I Remember, sounds quite similar to the gothic Hi-I LP I uploaded a while back).
The band was from Los Angeles - which I assume is the "Great City" in question, which actually kind of negates any credibility they may have (sorry, LA friends). They released a CD a few years after this but always remained pretty much unknown. Except for a lone discogs entry, there is absolutely no mention of this release anywhere online. It just goes to show that no matter how many 80s gems have been uncovered, there is still a plethora waiting to be unearthed by the patient collector.

Great City: Great City LP
1986, Impressive Records

A1 A Dollar, A Ruble
A2 Impressive
A3 Too Much Thunder
A4 Talk Before
B1 Tell Me I'm Yours
B2 Night Flight To Tangiers
B3 Never Land
B4 I Remember


Vanilla Face said...

It does seem like there will always be a new gem hidden just beneath the surface, waiting to be cleaned up and put on display in one of our museums :).

Looking forward to hearing this one. After work! I'll be posting the Calendar Crowd 12".

Anonymous said...

Here is Great City's 2nd recording Earth Dreams on CD.


Unknown said...

Ah yes, I remember buying this LP ages ago...I did the same thing, bought on cover alone, thinking something cool lurked inside...good one...The CD is not bad either...