80’s Music Rules ~ Criminally Underrated Artists/Bands ~ Gary Numan on the Brink of Something Great

Copyright 2011 Mimi

Gary Numan gave his fans a taste of what’s in store from the upcoming and long-awaited album Dead Son Rising. He posted an announcement that segments from three of the album’s songs were available to preview on his site NuWorld.

The three songs are titled, “The Fall,” “Captured Underground Noise Transmission” (please, no comments about the acronym this title forms), and “When The Sky Bleeds, He Will Come.” All three are killer tunes, with Gary Numan’s signature Gothic/industrial sound apparent in each. There’s a full live version of “The Fall” on YouTube that we have been enjoying for some time. All of this begs the question, “When is the long-awaited album going to be released?”

Fans are hoping for a release prior to the Back To The Phuture shows scheduled for the Manchester Academy and The Troxy April 1 & 2. We have learned to live with a great span of time between releases because Gary is a notoriously detail-oriented perfectionist. No complaints there. His collections produced and released since 1994, although painfully few and far between, have been magnificently crafted works of which he deserves to be very proud.

Just a random aside – I posted a comment similar to this on David Marsden’s site in a discussion about what’s wrong with today’s music: The boss and I had an interesting non-work discussion the other day. He is a classically trained musician (as is my husband). I had the boss listen to “Angel Wars” by Gary Numan, and he made mention of the use of the tritone or “devil’s note” in the song. It seems that this tonal dissonance is used by many non-mainstream musicians, and it gives a more raw and cutting edge to the music. This tends to be the music I am most drawn to, because it evokes more than just an aural response – it actually resonates within the body, adding a physical piece to the overall experience.

If you haven’t experienced Sacrifice (1994), Exile (1997), Pure (2000), or Jagged (2006) with your entire being, you are missing out on some of the most cutting-edge and vital dark wave music made over the last 17 years. Successful as a punk, post-punk, then synth-wave pioneer, Gary Numan has never shied away from experimentation and reinvention. But, he really hit his stride when he crossed over to the heavier side of music. He bares his soul for all to see, building a safe haven for all of our darkest and deepest emotions to dwell as we lose ourselves in the hard-edged tunes born of his own emotion-riddled creations.

Am I anxious for more brilliant Gothic/industrial Gary Numan in the form of Dead Son Rising? Oh, yeah.

Go to Gary Numan’s official website, where you can purchase his music, DVDs and other licensed merchandise.

The Fall” via YouTube user wwwdeadheavencouk:

The Angel Wars” via YouTube user voypacuenca:

Pure” via YouTube user deadliner: 

Haunted” via YouTube user knightvision:

Studio Album Discography

Tubeway Army (1978)
Replicas (1979)
The Pleasure Principle (1979)
Telekon (1980)
Dance (1981)
I, Assassin (1982)
Warriors (1983)
Berserker (1984)
The Fury (1985)
Strange Charm (1986)
Metal Rhythm (1988)
Automatic (1989)
Outland (1991)
Machine and Soul (1992)
The Radial Pair: Video Soundtrack (1994)
Sacrifice (1994)
Human (unreleased) (1995)
Exile (1997)
Pure (2000)
Jagged (2006)
Replicas Redux (2008)
The Pleasure Principle 30th Anniversary Edition (2009)

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80’s Music Rules ~ Criminally Underrated Artists/Bands ~ The Damned

The Damned formed in 1976 with Dave Vanian, Captain Sensible, Rat Scabies, and Brian James, all former members of punk-genre groups. When Scabies and James initially decided to strike out on their own, they invited Sid Vicious and Dave Vanian to audition for lead vocalist. Vanian was the only one to show up, so he got the job. Thus began The Damned, a vital, eclectic, and important influence on the 80’s music scene.

The Damned released their first album, Damned Damned Damned, which was coincidentally the first album to be released by a British punk band. Not only was it a first, it garnered some minor hits, and worldwide recognition for the band. A US tour shortly followed (another British punk band ”first”), and The Damned began to set a solid foothold in the highly volatile late 70’s punk rock scene.

After recruiting a second guitarist known simply as Lu, the band released a second album which reportedly was not promoted properly and tanked miserably .The band broke up and ended their recording relationship with their label. They tentatively reformed without James, signed on with a different label, experimented with switching roles, and headed back into the studio to try for another successful album release. During this phase, Vanian changed from typical punk front man to a more melodic and Gothic flare, giving the band the reputation of being one of the first to give birth to the genre.

From Wikipedia:

Machine Gun Etiquette featured a strong 1960s garage rock influence, with Farfisa organ in several songs. Recording at Wessex Studios at the same time as The Clash were there to record London Calling, Joe Strummer and Mick Jones made an uncredited vocal appearance on the title track. Fans and critics were pleasantly surprised, and Machine Gun Etiquette received largely positive reviews; Ira Robbins and Jay Pattyn described it as “A great record by a band many had already counted out.”

Ward was replaced by Paul Gray in 1980. After a couple of years and another album and EP release, The Damned added a full-time keyboardist, Roman Jugg, to fill in for Sensible who not only was splitting his time between guitar and keyboards, he was also splitting his time between The Damned and his own solo career. Captain Sensible made the jump to his solo career full time in 1984, leaving Jugg to take over the guitarist spot. Bryn Merrick was also added on Bass.

In 1985, the band decided to play up Vanian’s penchant for vampire-esque looks and music. They released Phantasmogoria, noted for its decidedly Gothic sound. The band found success with a non-album release of the single “Eloise” which charted in the UK Top Ten. In 1986, they released the album Anything, a commercial flop as a whole; but one very moody, elegant, and beautiful track, “In Dulce Decorum,” was included on the “Miami Vice II” soundtrack. This was my first introduction to the group, and remains my personal favorite.

The group broke up officially after releasing the aptly titled live album recording The Final Damnation.

Purchase The Damned music here.

“In Dulce Decorum” via YouTube user jebekijkthetmaar:

 “In Dulce Decorum (Dub Version)” via YouTube user roberteitor:

“Eloise” via YouTube user eddieredblood:

“Alone Again Or” via YouTube user livingdeadpunk138:

“Grimly Fiendish” via YouTube user NightNursebetty:

“Neat Neat Neat” via YouTube user r200300418:

 Discography

Damned, Damned, Damned (18 February 1977)
Music for Pleasure (18 November 1977)
Machine Gun Etiquette (2 November 1979)
The Black Album (20 October 1980)
Strawberries (1 October 1982)
Phantasmagoria (15 July 1985)
Anything (5 December 1986)
Not of This Earth (11 November 1995)
Grave Disorder (21 August 2001)
So, Who’s Paranoid? (10 November 2008)

80’s Music Rules ~ Criminally Underrated Artists/Bands ~ Lords Of The New Church

The Lords of the New Church formed in 1982, featuring legendary punk artists Stiv Bators (The Dead Boys) and Brian James (The Damned), along with Dave Tregunna (Sham 69) and Nicky Turner (The Barracudas). Wearing their punk roots proudly, they produced some of the edgier 80s tuneage, helping to balance out what could have been too much of a New Wave good thing. Their hard-to-classify music has been described as “darker and more melodic than traditional punk.”

Early on, the band found success with a single called “Open Your Eyes,” which charted in Canada’s Top 40. Another single, a parody cover version of Madonna’s “Like a Virgin,” was a less successful 1985 release, but is the band’s best known single to date. Because of how much I detest anything Madonna, if you want to hear that one, you’re on your own to find it.

Stiv Bators was notorious for his no-holds- barred onstage antics. During one such performance, Bators accidentally succeeded in hanging himself, declared clinically dead for several minutes. He managed to somehow fortunately make a full recovery, and the band went on to record two more albums.

In total, the band recorded three studio albums and one live album in their relatively brief 7-year career before ending with a flourish 1989. At a live performance, Bators fired the other group members onstage after an encore. The following year, Stiv Bators died tragically after being struck by a car in Paris.

Lords of the New Church reformed in 2003 with original members James and Tregunna, joined by frontman/vocalist Adam Becvare. They continue to tour and perform to this day, which is good news for people that missed them the first time around. Meanwhile, be sure to sample some of their original music which was an important and underrated part of history’s best musical decade.

Update: Mike Adamany from the group Lustkillers sent this information:

Adam Becvare continues to work with The Lords of the New Church when not fronting his own band The LustKillers.
Listen & View at:
http://www.myspace.com/lustkillers
http://www.facebook.com/lustkillers

http://www.lustkillers.com

Check them out!

Purchase Lords Of The New Church music here.

“Dance With Me” via YouTube user emimusic:

“Russian Roulette” via YouTube user ammutbite:

“Holy War” via YouTube user sevenmaiden7:

“Open Your Eyes” via YouTube user emimusic:

Discography

The Lords of the New Church (1982)
Is Nothing Sacred? (1983)
The Method to Our Madness (1984)
Psycho Sex (EP) (1987)
Hang On (2003)

80’s Music Rules ~ More from Retrospect CFRC-FM ~ 02-01-11


Ed challenged us all to put our obscure thinking caps on tonight. Mine got a real workout as I scrambled to identify the unidentifiable. Even Googling the lyrics let me down. Thank goodness Ed graced us with detailed back-announcing, otherwise some of tonight’s tunes would still be languishing in the alternate universe cut-out bin.

Be sure to tune in to Ed and his ”I dare you to ID this song” 80’s Retrospect show on CFRC-FM from 8 pm until 10 pm on Tuesday nights. Ed takes requests by phone: (613) 533-CFRC (2372) or email: retrospectcfrc at yahoo dot ca. Indulge yourself in some “80’s Music that doesn’t suck.” I guarantee die-hard 80’s New Wave/Post-punk fans will not be disappointed.

CFRC-FM Playlist February 1, 2011

Basement of Carruthers Hall in Queens University, Kingston, Ontario

ED-FM ~ Retrospect
80’s Music That Doesn’t Suck
If the “Listen Live” link on the CFRC Website doesn’t work, copy and paste this URL into your Windows Media Player: http://sunsite.queensu.ca:8000/
Join us in the Chat Room during the show – either click the link on the right menu under the Rave and Roll graphic, or here.
To listen to any shows that you may have missed, go to the CFRC website and look up the archives under the “Programming” drop-down menu. You can enjoy Ed’s previous shows in one-hour increments.

New Regime – I Won’t Let You Go
Hush – Now Reality
Short Wave Mystery – Pilots
Room 9 – Angels Sing
B-52s – Planet Claire
Extras – Hip Hop Hip Hip
Sex Pistols – Bodies
Xmal Deutschland – Mondlicht
A Split Second – Cold War In The Brainbox
It’s Immaterial – Ed’s Funky Diner
Gang Of Four – He’d Send In The Army
Neo A-4 – Say This To Me (12 inch)
Yello – Call It Love (12 inch)
Viva B – Man From China
BB Gabor – Metropolitan Life
Blue Fantasy – Evil Places
Databank A – Etiquette of Travel
Rational Youth – Bang On (12 inch)
Martha & The Muffins – Paint By Number Heart
XTC – Generals & Majors
Neon Judgement – I Wish I Could

80’s Music Rules ~ Criminally Underrated Artists/Bands ~ Hunters & Collectors

Hunters & Collectors formed in Melbourne, Australia in 1981. The starting members were John Archer (bass), Geoff Crosby (keyboards), Doug Falconer (drums), Robert Miles (live sound, art director), Greg Perano (percussion), Mark Seymour (guitar, vocals) and Ray Tosti-Gueira (guitar, vocals). Originally Hunters & Collectors were considered to be a part of the Krautrock genre and featured strong percussion accompanied by prominent guitar and driving bass. Over time, Hunters & Collectors added a horn section, consisting of Nigel Crocker (trombone), Jack Howard (trumpet), Andy Lynn (trumpet), Chris Malherbe (trumpet), Jeremy Smith (French horn) and Michael Waters (trombone).

When Hunters & Collectors were first signed to Mushroom Records in 1982, apparently the record company had a bit of a dilemma classifying their music. So, to accommodate this eclectic group, Mushroom formed an “alternative” label called “White Label.” Their first release was World of Stone, a three-track EP in January 1982, followed by a self-titled debut LP, Hunters & Collectors. Their first single release, “Talking To A Stranger,” has been featured on David Marsden’s show. It has a curious, catchy rhythm/bass component that perked my ears up the first time I heard it. It had a very well-done video to accompany its promotion, but the single never made it into the Top 50.

As with so many gifted 80’s bands, Hunters & Collectors experienced trials and tribulations with personnel and management. They continued to release music, but couldn’t seem to get any traction. The band finally achieved hard-won Australian success in 1986 with the release of LP Human Frailty. This LP managed to make it into the Top 10, sparking some interest from US-based IRS Records. The release in the states brought the band here to tour twice.

The next couple of album releases did modestly well, keeping the band alive, performing, and recording. Further personnel changes continued to plague them as they sought the all-elusive momentum of success they once fleetingly enjoyed in the US. It wasn’t for lack of trying; Hunters & Collectors worked hard at producing solid music through the 90s, finally calling it quits in 1998.

If it wasn’t for hearing this group on shows like David Marsden’s Marsbar Theatre and Ed-FM’s Retrospect, I never would have had the pleasure of learning more about them. I hope you’ll take the time to check out their music and ultimately find something that you will enjoy, too.

Official Hunters & Collectors MySpace page.

Purchase Hunters & Collectors music here.

“Talking To A Stranger” via YouTube user hazermi: 

“Say Goodbye” via YouTube user nzoz1986:

“When The River Runs Dry” via YouTube User nzoz1986:

“Throw Your Arms Around Me” via YouTube user tyronnem:

“Turn A Blind Eye” via YouTube user nzoz1989:

Studio albums

Hunters and Collectors (1982)
The Fireman’s Curse (1983)
Jaws of Life (1984)
Human Frailty (1986)
What’s a Few Men? (1987)
Fate (1988)
Ghost Nation (1989)
Cut (1992)
Demon Flower (1994)
Juggernaut (1998)

80’s Music Rules ~ Criminally Underrated Artists/Bands ~ The Bolshoi

My motto is, “Never enough Goth.” Continuing from last week’s Clan of Xymox post comes another 80s Goth/post-punk band, The Bolshoi.

Short-lived, but definitely memorable, The Bolshoi formed in Bath, UK in 1984. The original founding members were Trevor Tanner (vocals, guitar), Jan Kalicki (drums), and Nick Chown (bass). Their music was basically eclectic in nature, but definitely leaned toward Goth. The moody, pensive vocals and accompanying music were reminiscent of Bauhaus.

In 1985, the band relocated to London and added Paul Clark on keyboards. A couple of albums, and a switch to a more mainstream sound brought the band a broader touring schedule. But problems with the label found the band with a completed album that was never released. That signaled the end of The Bolshoi; gone from the 80’s music scene way too fast, but leaving some fabulous music behind.

If you listen to nothing else, be sure to check out “A Way.” It’s sure to tickle the Goth fancy of any serious 80s music fan.

Purchase The Bolshoi music here.

The Bolshoi official website.

“A Way” via YouTube user photosensitivity:
:

“A Way – extended mix” via YouTube user billpaxxton:

“Happy Boy” via YouTube user AngryJezebel:

“By the River” via YouTube user a1jungle:

“Sunday Morning” via YouTube user mtatini:

Discography

Giants (1985)
Friends (1986)
Lindy’s Party (1987)
Country Life (1988, unreleased)

80’s Music Rules ~ Criminally Underrated Artists/Bands ~ Clan of Xymox/ Xymox

Clan of Xymox started in Amsterdam the Netherlands in 1981. They have been referred to as the “founding fathers of goth,” which describes the genre of music they are most noted for, and what endears me to them every time I hear their music. Original members were Ronny Moorings, Pieter Nooten, Frank Weyzig, and Anke Wolbert.

After making their mark in the music world with a mini-album called Subsequent Pleasures in 1984, Clan of Xymox subsequently released their eponymous debut album in 1985. Shortening their name to just Xymox in 1987, their sophomore effort Medusa came next. Going forward, the band’s sound began to move away from goth and lean more toward electro-pop.

The band gained a cult following in the US with a 12″ single called “Blind Hearts,” also a college and club hit. The band released a couple more albums, moved to England, and released their fourth album Phoenix. They also lost members Wolbert and Nooten.

Xymox went through more personnel changes, eventually reverted back to the name Clan of Xymox, and continued to record and release albums for various labels through 2009.

Check out the Clan of Xymox webpage.

Purchase Clan of Xymox/Xymox music here.

Clan of Xymox MySpace page.

“Blind Hearts” via YouTube user rlopezf88:

“Obsession” via YouTube user VisionMusicPoland:

“Imagination” via YouTube user The TwiceAMan:

“No Human Can Drown” via YouTube user rlopezf86:

“Louise” via YouTube user electromarek:

80s-90s Discography:

Clan of Xymox (1985)
Medusa (1986)
Twist of Shadows (1989)
Phoenix (1991)
Metamorphosis (1992)
Headclouds (1993)
Hidden Faces (1997)