On this day, 29 years ago, Nitzer Ebb released the 'As Is' EP (10 June 1991), prior to their fourth studio album 'Ebbhead', on 7" vinyl, 12" Vinyl, CD, and cassette through Mute Records (MUTE122).
The EP features four tracks, each mixed by a different artist / producer. The first track, 'Family Man' is the only one which was also featured on Ebbhead album, albeit in a different version. It was mixed by Jaz Coleman, vocalist and frontman of Killing Joke. The second track, 'Lovesick' was mixed by Flood who produced the band's second and third albums, Belief and Showtime as well as the previously mentioned Ebbhead. The third track, 'Come Alive' was mixed by Alan Wilder of Depeche Mode, who would eventually be hired to co-produce the Ebbhead album. The last track, 'Higher' was mixed by Barry Adamson and Paul Kendall (PK). Barry Adamson was the bassist for Howard Devoto's Magazine and Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds and PK is an engineer/producer who has worked mainly for Mute Records on various Depeche Mode and Flood projects.
As Is (tracklist)
1. Family Man 3:56
2. Lovesick 4:00
3. Come Alive 6:12
4. Higher 5:50
Bon Harris – programming
Douglas McCarthy – vocals
Julian Beeston – additional drums and percussion
Today, 42 years ago, Joy Division self-released their very first 7' EP, An Ideal For Living!
Today, 42 years ago, Joy Division self-released their very first EP, An Ideal For Living! All four tracks were recorded in just one day at the Pennine Sound studios in Oldham, UK, on 14th December 1977 and released as a 7” on the band’s own Enigma label. The band self-financed this recording on a budget of £400.
The original release was pressed as 1000 copies and sold out by September the same year.
While the band was still known as Warsaw during the recording sessions for this release, they changed their name to Joy Division before the release took place.
The sleeve was printed on a 14' x 14' piece of thin cardstock and then folded into four squares. The front cover has a black-and-white Hitler Youth member beating a drum, which was drawn by guitarist Bernard Sumner and their bandname printed in a German gothic style blackletter font. The cover design, coupled with the nature of the band's name, fuelled controversy over whether the band had Nazi sympathies. When the EP was re-released on 12-inch vinyl, the original cover was replaced by artwork featuring scaffolding.
Numerous counterfeit editions of this release exist. Only the original vinyl has serrated vinyl around the label and different contours on the label.
Today, original copies are being traded between collectors and fans for prices from € 1500 to a stunning almost € 3000!
An Ideal For Living - Tracklist
No Love Lost
Leaders Of Men
Electro/Synthwave act GIANT MONSTERS ON THE HORIZON unleash new studio album - Live From Night City
St. Louis electronic/synthwave band GIANT MONSTERS ON THE HORIZON have released their new studio album, Live From Night City.
Social disparity, the need to connect on a greater than superficial level, tasting oblivion. We, as a society, seem to have merged with the mechanical as a form of statement or as a need to find an added ability to get something we didn't have access to before.
Is that, however, transcendence? That's what we'd like to know. And these songs ponder such nature.
"When writing this album, we were dealing with isolation, depression, illness and other struggles. You will see those themes and attempts to overcome them in a lot of the songs throughout. We tried to wrap it all up into a tight little package of stories you might see in fictitious Night City, which could represent any city really." - GIANT MONSTERS ON THE HORIZON
For all of the technological advances we have made in the world, we are at a much worse place than we ever thought we would be. Welcome to Night City. So how did we get here?
For Fans Of: VNV NATION & COVENANT
On this day, 62 years ago, Jerry Wayne Hussey (26 May 1958) was born in Bristol, England. He is best known as the lead singer of The Mission and ex-guitarist of The Sisters of Mercy.
The first real success for Hussey as a guitarist was with Dead or Alive. After frontman Pete Burns retreated to become a more studio-based artist, Hussey left to join The Sisters of Mercy, concentrating on 12-string and 6-string guitars. Besides playing guitars he also contributed to The Sister Of Mercy arrangements with his higher ranged voice which was brought into place to contrast with Andrew Eldritch's melancholic baritone.
When The Sisters of Mercy disbanded, Hussey and bassist, Craig Adams, set up The Mission, recruiting Mick Brown on drums and Simon Hinkler on guitars.
In 2009, he released his first solo album called Bare and in 2014 his second solo album Songs of Candlelight and Razorblades followed.
Hussey lived in Leeds for a while before moving to London towards the end of the 1980s. Currently he lives in São Paulo, Brazil.
Photo © Luc Luyten
"I don't know where I'm going from here, but I promise it won't be boring." —David Bowie
The talent that lay behind the monochrome eyes of David Bowie was not just his obvious gift for creating memorable songs, it was in fact his unique view of life and existence that separated him from us. Sometimes he did not always hit the intended mark, however when he did he rose above not only decipherable genres of music but art itself. This factor is omnipresent in his 1974, flamboyant and deadly Diamond Dogs (24 May 1974).
This post-apocalyptic nightmare, was Bowie’s breakaway album from the Spiders from Mars. It was essential that the Spiders imploded for Bowie to push forward into new areas, this was his cut and run from glam rock and his Ziggy Stardust foil, guitarist Mick Ronson. Though the album itself is a drastically different approach which had capitulated Bowie's previous work, his earlier characters of Aladdin Sane and Ziggy, though dead, still made their spectral prescience felt on moments of the album. The front cover picture of Bowie with his Ziggy-like haircut was one give away, the sci-fi subject still at the fore another, but the style had shifted dramatically as did the delivery.
Diamond Dogs is a fur covered Clockwork Orange style rampage through an abysmal futurescape of drugs, murder and sex. It drips with a steel tongued punk attitude, a proto-ambient dash of the new wave to come. The reuniting with Tony Visconti as producer was another plus in helping the albums rock conception and complicated structure, getting it to number one in the UK and the amassed critical praise that followed the album then and now.
From the unearthly opening-‘Future Legends' heralds the album as it launches with a terrifying howl. An ambient and ominous music flows in the background, Bowie's vocal in and out of phase as he talks you through the new Manhattan, now renamed Hunger City. With a macabre nursery rhyme of children's voices, monstrous sounds and finally crowd kicks in and a recording of a live audience screaming and Bowies shiver down spine opening line-"This Ain't Rock and Roll, This Is Genocide!".
Into the title track and the introduction of a new character-"Halloween Jack". With a Stones/Stooges sounding guitar, simple in its approach which makes it all the more enjoyable and relatable. "Diamond Dogs" does feature some of David Bowie's most remarkable songs, such at the infectious 'Rebel Rebel' containing his own memorable guitar lick.
Then there is the punk avant garde of ‘Sweet Thing’ and its midway segue-'Candidate' an act of brilliance in both style and lyrics. Remaining q fan favourite even today,the lyrics sang in a seedy swagger.The bisexual question compounded even more so here-"If you want it, boys, get it here thing 'Cause hope, boys, is a cheap thing, cheap thing"
The middle section ‘Candidate’ features a strong example of Bowie’s attempts at a William S.Burroughs style cut and shut lyrics. Resulting in taking random lines and phrases and putting them into some order that makes sense, here to devastating effect as a distorted guitar leads the concerto;"I'm having so much fun with the poisonous people, Spreading rumors and lies and stories they made up, Some make you sing and some make you scream!”
The original conception of Diamond Dogs was designed to be a rock opera based on the George Orwell novel '1984'. Some of the obvious elements of which still exist on the latter half of the album in the songs 'Big Brother' and of course '1984'. The refusal by the widow of George Orwell-Sonia, to let the project take fruition does not in any way detract from the greatness of the album. Suffering in a way from the similar faith of The Who and Pete Townshend's breakdown triggering 'Lifehouse', a 48 track quadruple album, aborted for the more slimline and rock friendly 'Who's Next'. Bowie, in this case took it on the chin and thankfully continued to create the album.
The coke fueled assault, the music as an art form with a midas touch had came to fruition once again, another classic to add to canon of excellence David Bowie was building. More controversy via the cover this time instead of the subject matter. The album cover released as a gatefold image by Belgian painter Guy Peellaert, the front, Bowie-Ziggy like, resting whilst the back cover revealing that Bowie had the body of a dog, complete with a prominent penis. Some airbrushing rendering Bowie's canine groin smooth and blank. This risqué cover was quickly withdrawn, instantly becoming a collectors item.
The tour for the album, the most elaborate so far,a little over a million (nowadays) per set. With a stage itself a replica of 'Hunger City', along with the elaborate stage props. After two months of rehearsals, the tour kicked off in June 1974,running until August while the month was taken off. Bowie worked on his next skin shedding project, his plastic soul era.When the tour resumed the set was scrapped,the tour name changed to 'The Soul Tour', although the 'Diamond Dogs' era was over as quick as it started, the songs remained in his set, the idea and direction of his next project-Young Americans.