Friday, March 30, 2007

Martha and the Muffins | Dinsong (Virgin)

Here is Martha and the Muffins – a new wave band out of Toronto that got started in 1977 and "Metro Music" - their debute LP dated 1980.
In fact, there were actually two Marthas in the group: Martha Ladly (vocals) and Martha Johnson (vocals and keyboards), who was later one half of the duo M+M.
Mark Gane: "In May of 1977 as a young visual artist/experimental musician, I was invited by fellow Ontario College of Art student David Millar to start a band with him. The punk/new wave scene had been going for a few years and its ironic and distainful stance against the blandness of 1970's mainstream culture was immediately appealing. Suddenly, everyone around seemed to be starting a band or was in one already."... cut... "We were signed to Dindisc/Virgin Records in London and by the summer of 1979 we were recording our first album, "Metro Music", at The Manor, just outside of Oxford, England" – as told by Martha... cut... "Unfortunately, as with many young groups, the pressures of success and fame brought on differences of opinion, personality clashes and ultimately the erosion of band unity. It was very difficult for those six people to weather the changes that came with the success in 1980 of Metro Music" and the world-wide top ten hit "Echo Beach". Here the history of Martha and the Muffins ends and the M+M's one starts...

PS. From "Today's Parent" (June/July) – review by John Hoffman: "What happens to pop stars when they have kids? Some, like Martha Johnson, try their hand at children's music. Many have taken this shot, and most miss the mark- Not Johnson. She and partner (family as well as musical) Mark Gane were collaborators in Martha and the Muffins (subsequently known as M+M), a Canadian group that enjoyed some international success in the '80s. Songs from the Treehouse, her first album for children, is pretty much what you might expect from the folks who brought us Echo Beach. The music is simple and melodic with a clean, modern sound that, fortunately, resists the temptation to overindulge in technology, even though it's synth-based. One highlight is My Little Sister, a catchy little a cappella tune about learning to talk, made all the more appealing by the recorded babblings of Johnson's daughter Eve. Overall, it's a fresh new sound in children's music, and that's quite an accomplishment these days in a genre where few stones have been left unturned".=)

Here are some links all these citations has been taken from: Wikipedia on Martha and the Muffins, Women of 1970's Punk, A site dedicated to the musical artistry of Mark Gane and Martha Johnson OKA (once known as) Martha and the Muffins AKA M+M, Russian web page on Martha and the Muffin – fuck, is that what I see?

• The sleeve info:
Carl Finkle – bass
Mark Gane – guitar, synthi A
Tim Gane – drums
Andy Haas – sax
Martha Johnson – vocals, keyboards
Martha Ladly – vocals, keyboards, trombone.

Produced by Mike Howlett
Sequencer on "Terminal Twilight" - Mike Howlett
Engeneered by Richard Manwarning
Assistant Engeneer - Lawrence Diana (ADVISION)
Tape op. - Paul Menpes
Recorded at The Manor, August 1979
Mixed at The Manor and ADVISION, London
1980 Dindisc, Dinsong Limited.

Sleeve based on map 30M/11 of the National Topographic System with kind permission of DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY, MINES AND RESOUCES, OTTAWA, CANADA. (All sleeves are usually embeded, you can see these in iTunes artwork section).

Canadian Musician 81: "The English used to call them pop. Now they don't know what to call them. We just call them Martha and the Muffins". Absolutely new wav-ish piece.

Download Martha and the Muffins "Metro Music" (63.9 Mb)

Friday, March 23, 2007

Kevin Dunn and the Regiment of Women | Armageddon Records

Third – I still count gems of mine. And the first LP I bought... Kevin Dunn and the Regiment of Women "The Judgement of Paris", Armageddon Records 1981, Atanta. Of course, I thought it was Kevin Drumm... was in such a nervous tremor, visiting the vintage LP store near by for the first time=). Thanks God, it was Dunn... First a Fan, then sole leader (and member) of a Regiment of Women.
"The Judgement of Paris" is a striking modern-music pop album by this onetime member of Atlanta's great pioneering independent band, the Fans. In reality a solo album, with lots of synths and guitars, Dunn mixes technical flash with semi-demented musical ideas, camouflaging nutty lyrics in engaging melodies and closing out the proceedings with an instrumental "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," complete with devolving rhythms." [Ira Robbins, whoever she is.]
What's so special about this release: the number of rythmic and melodical changes per time unit, the density of musical ideas for such a monotonic and moodish direction as new wave. These adroit pop tunes are made of absolutely "non-pop" stuff... it's amaizing. For exqmple, the A-Side "Creep" is so "dense", "CPM" enough and to spare, the "non-pop" effected guitar solo is absolutely unique... Listen to the drum machines – "nonconvetional" would not be exact enough. It's TR606... I think... or TR 808... programmed so uncommon, fast and almost falling out of step...well, it can take time to compose a full description, but there is no sence. Sometimes you got to just let the record speak for itself.
Get this gem, dig for more on Dunn... buy this LP if you can, write him a message on "His"Space...
Just wanted to mention, for further search... a great resource, one page only, on Atlanta area new wave bands.
If onyone has any other releases from Dunn's RW or Fans ripped or has been in time with downloading "Nadine" (his first solo 12'' containing a cover of the Chuck Berry classic and a song about the Soviet era underground comic character Oktyabrina) from CRUD CRUD, please, let me know.
• The sleeve info:
ARM3 Kevin Dunn and the Regiment of Women "The Judgement of Paris" (12")
Kevin Dunn and the Regiment of Women are: Kevin Dunn, Debbie Heidel, Lenore Thompson, Terry Coburn
Produced by Kevin Dunn except Tootsie 1produced by Bruce Baxter and Kevin Dunn
Engineered by Bruce Baxter/Recorded at Channel One, atlanta, 3.12.80 to 13.3.81
Executive Production: Danny Beard
Cover by Sean Bourne
Thanks to: Alfredo Villar for consultation on bass and backing vocal arrangements; Clark Musical Instrument Co. for sundry essential assists; etc., etc....

Once again, absolutely new wav-ish piece... unusual up to the limit.

Download Kevin Dunn and the Regiment of Women "The Judgement of Paris" (63.9 Mb)

The Sensational Creed | Beggars Banquet

The Sensational Creed is kinda band-phantom for me... absolute info absence. I mailed to Mutant Sounds and left comments on several blogs more in attemp to get any info that would be somewhat more than just niggardly cat description. Well, anyway, The Sensational Creed "Nocturnal Operations" is a masterpiece... and nevertheless I cannot inform you in a worthy manner, this LP is the one I would like to share more than any. Beggars Banquet is an English independent record label that began as a chain of record shops owned by Martin Mills and Nick Austin. In 1977, spurred by the prevailing DIY aesthetics of the British punk rock movement (then at the height of its popularity), they decided to join the fray as an independent label and release records under the Beggars Banquet imprint. Two daughter labels, Situation Two and 4AD Records, were launched to release artists like The Pixies, Cocteau Twins and others. Situation Two was the label to press the first The Sensational Creed 7'' under the same name three years later their 12'' "Nocturnal Operations" was pressed on Beggars Banquet. This ripp was done from the 1984 BEG 12''.
• The sleeve info:
BEG 125 T Sensational Creed "Nocturnal Operations" (12")
All titles written by Sensational Creed
"Nocturnal Operations": Christine Beveridge* – Voice; Steve Reid – Voice, Instruments; Mixed and Produced by M. Hedges, B. MacKenzie and S. Reid
"Down Pericomoscopes": S. Reid – Voice, Instruments; S. Mason – Synthesisers; B. MacKenzie – Tubular Bells; Mixed and Produced by M. Hedges, B. MacKenzie and S. Reid
"The Voyage of the Titanic": S. Reid – Instruments; Howard Hughes – Grand Piano, Emulator; Jamie McCormack – Euphonium; Mixed and Produced by S. Reid
* Christine Beveridge, Billy MacKenzie's friend from Dundee, Scotland. Christine and Billy were old friends. They met in The Crypt, Billy's clothes shop in Dundee, where Christine was a "regular costumer". Later, she had moved in London with Steve Reid, and that's where she met Billy again in 1981. According to the Glamour Chase (Maverick Life of Billy MacKenzie (Paperback)) biography, she moaned about being forced to sing in that breathy style by Billy.
Any additional info would be appreciated. No sleeve attached, sorry... problems with a scanner (I do not paste the covers into the post body but these should be embedded and seen in iTunes as "Artwork"... not this time*).
*Upadated, now with the front and back of the sleeve scans embeded.

"So, brilliant, but obviously too strange for that time, to be a hit"... tricky avant-pop with, shaking vocals by Reid, breathy one from Beveridge... really twisted bass lines are the well produced supplement for the simple drum lines structure... new wave masterpiece... it's outstanding.

Download The Sensational Creed "Nocturnal Operations" (29.8 Mb)

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Tuning Shrines | Temple Records

As my survey of the wast "hauntology" array here comes the first (awaited and thoroughly prepared...) ripp from the orginal UK print dated 1984. Temple Records curated by Genesis P-Orridge and the T.O.P.Y (World Network System) are the units to thank for that homogenic piece (and my Maranz 6300+Logic Express as well=)).
• The sleeve info:
TOPY 007 Turning Shrines "Face Of Another" (12")
All titles written by TURNING SHRINES
Produced by FRED (*) for Temple Records 1984
Recorded at EUPHORIA, Boston, USA
Mastered by Steve Angel at UTOPIA, UK
Collage by ASAKO
Editor in Chief: Genesis P-Orridge
* Fred Giannelli - a member of the band. As far as I see, he was a drum programmer, sound engeneer - and this massive reverbs is a result of his FX presets=). "Fred has been producing some of the finest techno and minimal tracks as the Kooky Scientist, as well as his working with Richie Hawtin and Dan Bell on the Spawn project for Plus 8 after his early recordings with The Turning Shrines and his work on the new PTV albums". You can read irrefragable (more or less) interview with Giannelli here.
Sorry, but there is no file on two other members of the Turning Shrines: Asako and Neal... no surnames on the envelope, no any scarps on Google... anyone can help?

Strongly reverbrated guitar noises and slides, deep and muted bass lines, drum machines simple "newwavish" patterns – a minimal synth piece curated by Gen P.

Download Turning Shrines "Face of Another" (31.7 Mb)