The return of CousteauX

20 10 2020

CousteauX (formerly known as Cousteau) after a few years away are back, with a new album Stray Gods.

Cousteau were a London based band active from 1999 to 2005, releasing 3 studio albums and known for the songs The Last Good Day of The Year and Mesmer.

Core Cousteau members Liam McKahey and Davey Ray Moor returned as CousteauX in 2016 and after releasing their first album under the CousteauX name in 2017, and a series of well-received gigs, it all went quiet again and the band seemed to have disappeared. Until now.

Stray Gods will be available with songs being released via their website, one track at a time, with a choose your own price model. There is no news at this stage of a physical release (a vinyl release would be welcome!) but this is a good way to support the band and that will hopefully lead to further music.

Live stream gigs are also a possibility. Sign up to the band’s mailing list and follow them on their social media channels, on Facebook and Twitter.

For other music news, follow me on Twitter.





Lunatic Soul – “Through Shaded Woods” album review

16 10 2020

Lunatic Soul release their new album Through Shaded Woods on KScope on 13 November 2020, on single CD, limited double CD and vinyl.

Lunatic Soul is the solo studio project of vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Mariusz Duda (Riverside). Album number seven Through Shaded Woods explores the darkness of Slavic and Scandinavian folk.

Previous Lunatic Soul albums have been very electronic affairs. Through Shaded Woods is a virtually electronic free zone, with more acoustic and electric guitars than previous releases and for the first time, Duda plays all the instruments.

Through Shaded Woods opens with the hypnotising and trancelike Navvie, an upbeat and rousing call to arms that conjures up “the souls of the dead” and along with several tracks on the album, signals a feeling of rebirth and positivity. Not a bad feeling in these strange times we are currently living through.

The second longest track on the album, The Passage, is one of the most rewarding tracks as you journey Through Shaded Woods. This is the darkest Duda gets on the album, with a piece that starts off relatively bright and sparse, working towards the razor-sharp dark metal riffs that propel the powerful middle section.

“I’m thinking out loud
passing former gods
turned into trees
am I in the real life
or am I in the realm of make-believe”

The riffs fall away quickly but the tempo remains high on one of the strongest tracks on the album.

The title track twists and turns, with light percussion underneath the trademark Lunatic Soul harmonies and a feeling of paranoia, amplified by the heavily processed lead vocal. Lycanthropy lingers in the dark forests of Duda’s lyric.

“eyes on every corner
shining in the dark”

As we hit the half-way mark, the mood of Through Shaded Woods lifts. Oblivion has a wonderful drum and guitar interplay, as melodies sneak in and out of the intriguing rhythm arrangement. Where previously synths would have laid the textures, on this album the same effect is offered by vocal layers.

Summoning Dance is the longest track, and as throughout the whole album, it offers up its secrets over repeated plays. The guitars give the main rhythmic thrust, underpinned by a simple kick pulse. I dare you to keep still whilst listening to Summoning Dance. The music hints at a simpler, more pagan and earth-connected time, and works so much better if you give your full attention and immerse yourself in the performance.

“so why do I feel
like I already failed”

Photo: Tomasz Pulsakowski

The Fountain features one of my favourite Mariusz Duda vocal performances. There is a real lightness of touch, and a lovely slightly rasping timbre that suits the aching melancholy of the song perfectly.

“stream of sounds
wash away the darkness from my soul”

Through Shaded Woods stands alone in the Lunatic Soul catalogue. It works so well as a complete body of work, as it flows with more consistency than previous albums. It has quickly seeped into my soul and is one of my favourite albums of 2020.

Navvie [04:03]
The Passage
[08:57]
Through Shaded Woods
[05:51]
Oblivion
[05:03]
Summoning Dance
[09:52]
The Fountain
[06:04]

Bonus tracks contained on disc 2 of the Limited Edition CD:

Vyraj [05:32]
Hylophobia
[03:20]
Transition II
[27:45]





Airbag – All Rights Removed & The Greatest Show on Earth limited edition vinyl re-issues

9 10 2020

Karisma Records are re-issuing Airbag’s All Rights Removed and The Greatest Show on Earth on November 20 2020 on limited edition vinyl, with both albums remastered for vinyl by White Willow / The Opium Cartel’s Jacob Holm-Lupo.

Airbag’s second album All Rights Removed was originally released in 2011. The 2020 remaster is released as a heavyweight double vinyl in gatefold cover, pressed on red vinyl.

The Norwegian band’s third album The Greatest Show on Earth was first released in 2013, and this 2020 heavyweight vinyl remaster is pressed on blue vinyl.

Jacob Holm-Lupo has offered a subtle and sympathetic remaster for vinyl. No brick-walling here – there is no real volume difference, just a little more punch and the synths really sparkle in this redux. This is the best these albums have ever sounded..

All Rights Removed sees the band shift their sound up a gear. The album opener is a heady mix of classic and progressive rock, with guitarist Bjørn Riis rising to the fore on most tracks.

White Walls is full of Dave Gilmour influenced guitar runs and textures, and is one of my favourite songs in the Norwegion band’s catalogue. Dim the lights and turn up the volume.

The mid-section bass, keyboard and guitar prelude before the song kicks back into full power is a joy to experience.

“Cos nothing ever stays the same…”

The tempo remains constant with The Bridge, before the space-rock of Never Coming Home (it reminds me of Signify era Porcupine Tree) leads into the atmospheric instrumental Light Them All Up.

The album closes with one of the band’s most popular tracks (in terms of 1 million Spotify streams) with the 17 and a half minute Homesick. The song is stunning and this is the best I have heard this masterpiece sound. Heading off into Tangerine Dream and Pink Floyd territory in the mid-section, this is a journey you really want to take.

The Greatest Show on Earth adds a slight metal element to the band’s palette, on top of their more atmospheric layered sound from previous releases.

Redemption is a slow-burning modern prog piece, with spurts of heavy, gasoline fuelled choruses. Silence Grows moves the intensity down a couple of notches, with a powerful song that would not have sounded out of place on David Gilmour’s On An Island album. The instrumental sections sound amazing thanks to the superb Jacob Holm-Lupo vinyl master.

The Greatest Show on Earth is an album built to be heard in one sitting, and so works best in the vinyl format, when you can give it your full attention, and not break into individual tracks on streaming platforms.

There is a great use of vocal harmonies, atmosphere and restraint to build the mood on the albums second longest track, Call Me Back.

Surveillance (part 2​-​3) is the 16 minute album closer. Taking some of the mood of Porcupine Tree’s Stars Die, Surveillance (part 2​-​3) is a story of isolation and moves from an emotive, quite traditional arrangement to something darker and more experimental as it progresses.

“No need for you to be here
The comfort of my TV screen is all that I need”

All Rights Removed & The Greatest Show on Earth are limited edition releases, so if you missed out on getting these wonderful modern progressive albums on vinyl a few years ago, now is your chance. Links to buy the albums on Burning Shed and Amazon are below.





News: The Bathers Marina Records trilogy (vinyl & CD reissues)

30 09 2020

The Bathers Marina Records trilogy received it’s first vinyl release in October 2020. Lagoon Blues, Sunpowder and Kelvingrove Baby were released on 180g vinyl and CD in remixed and remastered versions on 23 October 2020.

Scotland’s best-kept secret The Bathers will appeal to fans of The Blue Nile, Tom Waits and David Bowie. If you enjoy orchestrated, emotional, literate music that swerves from the standard rock template, The Bathers might become your new favourite band. You can thank me later.

Lagoon Blues

A 2020 remixed and remastered version of the album that was originally released on Marina Records in 1993. Lagoon Blues is an ambitious and emotional journey. Listen to the beautiful Venice Shoes, with its evocation of empty ballrooms and rainy nights on the lamp lit streets and city squares of Glasgow, below.

Lagoon Blues Pt. 1
Venice Shoes
Gracefruit
Never Too Late
Fermina Fair
Easter – for Edda Van Heemstra
Pissoir / The Ornella Mutiny
Through The Old Holmwood
Sweetheart Sessions
Lolita
Via D’Oro
Ave The Leopards
Carnival
Easter Sorbonne
Lagoon Blues Pt. 2

Sunpowder

A 2020 remixed and remastered version of the album that was originally released on Marina Records in 1995. Elizabeth Fraser of The Cocteau Twins contributes vocals to several tracks, most notably on the free-spirited The Angel On Ruskin (listen below).

Danger In Love
The Angel On Ruskin
Delft
Faithless
For Saskia
Weem Rock Muse
The Night Is Young
Send Me Your Halo
She’s Gone Forever
The Dutch Venus
Sunpowder

Kelvingrove Baby

A 2020 remixed and remastered version of the final album in the Marina Records trilogy, originally released in 1997. Kelvingrove Baby features contributions from Justin Currie (Del Amitri) and James Grant (Love and Money).

The personal highlight on the album is my favourite song from the band, the achingly beautiful If Love Could Last Forever.

“They flutter down like fireflies
Tugging at your sleeves
Somehow rise to shame you
Bring you to your knees”

Thrive
Girlfriend
If Love Could Last Forever
East Of East Delier
Kelvingrove Baby
Dial
Once Upon A Time On The Rapenburg
Girl From The Polders
The Fragrance Remains Insane
Hellespont In A Storm
Twelve

The Best of The Bathers

To listen to more of my favourites, listen to my Spotify playlist – The Best of The Bathers





News: Long Hot Summers: The Story Of The Style Council

10 09 2020

UMC / Polydor have released a new Style Council collection: Long Hot Summers: The Story Of The Style Council.

The collection is available on CD and vinyl, and contains key single and album tracks from the band formed by Paul Weller & Mick Talbot after The Jam split.

This impressive collection features many of the great singles / EP and album tracks such as My Ever-Changing Moods, The Paris Match, Speak Like a Child, Have You Ever Had It Blue as well as less celebrated songs such as the stark Ghosts Of Dachau and the breezy How She Threw It All Away.

The collection includes tracks featuring drummer Steve White and vocalist Dee C. Lee, and was endorsed and co-compiled by Paul Weller.

Long Hot Summers: The Story Of The Style Council contains two previously unreleased recordings – a demo of the top 5 single My Ever Changing Moods (with strings), and an extended version of Dropping Bombs On The Whitehouse (the original version featured on the band’s first album, Café Bleu).

The release ties in with a Sky Arts documentary about the band, featuring interviews with all key members, fans and collaborators.

Buy the double CD from Amazon

Buy the triple Vinyl from Amazon

CD tracklisting:

Disc One

Headstart for Happiness
Long Hot Summer
My Ever-Changing Moods
Walls Come Tumbling Down!
Party Chambers
Wanted (or Waiter, There’s…)
Shout to the Top!
It Just Came to Pieces in My Hands
Come to Milton Keynes
Why I Went Missing
Waiting
Ghosts Of Dachau
Down in the Seine
The Paris Match
Boy Who Cried Wolf
Life at a Top People’s Health Farm
Homebreakers
Dropping Bombs On The Whitehouse (Extended version)

Disc two

Speak Like a Child
The Lodgers (Or She Was Only…)
Money Go Round
You’re the Best Thing
How She Threw It All Away
A Man of Great Promise
The Piccadilly Trail
A Solid Bond in Your Heart
All Gone Away
Sweet Loving Ways
Promised Land
Have You Ever Had It Blue
It Didn’t Matter
Spin’ Drifting
Here’s One That Got Away
A Woman’s Song
Changing of the Guard
My Ever-Changing Moods (Demo)
Shout To The Top (Instrumental)

Vinyl Tracklisting:

Side A
Headstart for Happiness
Long Hot Summer
My Ever-Changing Moods
Walls Come Tumbling Down!
Party Chambers

Side B
Wanted (or Waiter, There’s…)
Shout to the Top!
It Just Came to Pieces in My Hands
Come to Milton Keynes
Why I Went Missing
Waiting

Side C
Ghosts Of Dachau
Down in the Seine
The Paris Match
Life at a Top People’s Health Farm
Dropping Bombs On The Whitehouse (Extended version)

Side D
Speak Like a Child
The Lodgers (Or She Was Only…)
Money Go Round
You’re the Best Thing
How She Threw It All Away

Side E
A Man of Great Promise
The Piccadilly Trail
A Solid Bond in Your Heart
Sweet Loving Ways
Promised Land
It Didn’t Matter

Side F
Have You Ever Had It Blue
Spin’ Drifting
Here’s One That Got Away
Changing of the Guard
My Ever-Changing Moods (Demo)





News: Kraftwerk coloured vinyl limited edition album reissues

9 09 2020

Parlophone have reissued eight Kraftwerk albums on limited edition 180g coloured vinyl. The audio included on these re-issued albums will be the 2009 remasters.

Autobahn, Radio-Activity, Trans-Europe Express, The Man-Machine, Computer World, Techno Pop (aka Electric Café), The Mix and Tour De France were released on 9 October 2020.

Pre-order limited coloured vinyl from Amazon

  • Autobahn (1974) – Translucent blue vinyl, 12-page booklet
    Buy now
  • Radio-Activity (1975) – Translucent yellow vinyl, 16-page booklet
    Buy now
  • Trans-Europe Express (1977) – Clear vinyl, 16-page booklet
    Buy now
  • The Man-Machine (1978) – Translucent red vinyl, 16-page booklet
    Buy now
  • Computer World (1981) – Translucent neon yellow vinyl, 16-page booklet Buy now
  • Techno Pop (1986) – Clear vinyl, 16-page booklet
    Buy now
  • The Mix (1991) – White vinyl, 20-page booklet
    Buy now
  • Tour De France (2003) – Disc 1: Translucent blue vinyl; Disc 2: Translucent red vinyl, 20-page booklet
    Buy now




1978 – The Year The UK Turned Day-Glo compilation review

24 08 2020

1978 – The Year The UK Turned Day-Glo is a new 3 CD set from Cherry Red, released on 28 August 2020.

The 79 tracks (from a marketing view-point, maybe there should have been 78 tracks!) cover the well-known punk and new wave hits from the year, along with lesser-known regional acts from Manchester, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The collection also includes an entertaining 48-page booklet that includes details on every track included in the compilation.

The first CD features some of the era’s big-hitters. Opening with Sham 69’s Borstal Breakout from January 1978, followed by one of the hardest-hitting singles by The Stranglers, 5 Minutes. The percussive Emergency by 999 is another highlight, as is the early Gary Numan release – Oh! Didn’t I Say by Tubeway Army.

Automatic Lover by The Vibrators fits in with the short-lived power pop movement of bands such as Tonight (Drummer Man) from the Spring of 1978. She’s So Modern by The Boomtown Rats reminds you what a powerful force the band were from 1978 to around 1981, with an amazing run of pop / new wave hit singles.

A pre-fame Japan offer Don’t Rain On My Parade and are a world away from the sound they settled on from Quiet Life in late 1979, that showcased their move from new wave guitars to something more sophisticated on the cusp of the 80s synth-pop explosion.

Concrete Jungle by The Coventry Automatics is an early track from the band that would soon become The Specials, with their mix of new wave and ska already starting to develop into the style they would use so successfully from 1979 onwards. The Only Ones Another Girl, Another Planet was unbelievably never a hit but is a classic single from this year, and sits well in this collection.

Magazine contribute the early single Touch And Go. Irish band Pretty Boy Floyd And The Gems Spread The Word Around is a song I missed at the time, but is worthy of inclusion here. The Steve Lillywhite produced When The Tanks Roll Over Poland Again by The Automatics has a great guitar sound and Jilted John’s only hit single (produced by Martin Hannett!) is one of the biggest selling tracks on this album.

The second CD opens with the track that gave the compilation it’s name, X-Ray Spex with The Day The World Turned Day-Glo, a song that has aged well. What a guitar sound! Up Against The Wall by the Tom Robinson Band is driven by a powerful guitar riff from the late, great Danny Kustow.

Tyne and Wear band The Carpettes (who I saw at least once in my local venue, Woolwich Tramshed) supply 2ne1, whilst the Midge Ure fronted Rich Kids offer the title track from their only studio album, Ghosts Of Princes In Towers, an album I still love.

Another couple of favourites sit on CD 2 – the John Foxx fronted Ultravox with Slow Motion and the Status Quo pastiche / Mike Oldfield mentioning Heads Down No Nonsense Mindless Boogie by Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias. I’ve still got a double 7″ vinyl of this single somewhere. I must dig it out.

The third and final disc opens with my favourite Public Image Ltd song, their debut single Public Image. Stiff Little Fingers 2nd single Alternative Ulster and Life’s A Gamble by Penetration are also highlights. Penetration’s Pauline Murray releases a new solo album in the Autumn.

Johnny Thunders full-length album version of You Can’t Put Your Arms Around A Memory is included here, although I prefer the short, stripped back Pete Wylie (Wah!) version, as part of the Hope (I Wish You’d Believe Me) single in 1983. The Saints Are Coming by the Skids features some of Stuart Adamson’s earliest incendiary guitar lines. Again, the compilers choose a deeper cut from one of the era’s biggest bands with In The Crowd from The Jam’s All Mod Cons album.

The punk-pop of Destination Venus by The Rezillos is a forgotten tune from this era. Flashing In The Subway by pub-rockers Tyla Gang comes from the more blues / Dr Feelgood side of new wave rock. RIP Sean Tyla. 10:15 Saturday Night by The Cure is a less obvious choice for this compilation, and so stands out amongst some of the more standard new wave blueprint tracks.

If you are a fan of punk and new wave and want to delve deeper than the hit singles, this Cherry Red compilation offers good value for money and is an entertaining collection from a vintage year for music.

Buy 1978 – The Year The UK Turned Day-Glo on Amazon

Disc One

Borstal Breakout – Sham 69
5 Minutes – The Stranglers
Emergency – 999
Don’t Tango On My Heart – The Doll
Oh! Didn’t I Say – Tubeway Army
Automatic Lover – The Vibrators
I’m A Boy – Cyanide
Bad In Bed – The Electric Chairs
Lost Lenore – Attrix
Stuck With You – Zones
Party Clothes – Subs
You’re A Disease – The Outcasts
She’s So Modern – The Boomtown Rats
I’m Civilised – Menace
Moonmidsummer – The Freshies
The Kids Are Alright – The Pleasers
Don’t Rain On My Parade – Japan
Concrete Jungle – The Coventry Automatics
Another Girl, Another Planet – The Only Ones
Touch And Go – Magazine
Spread The Word Around – Pretty Boy Floyd And The Gems
When The Tanks Roll Over Poland Again – The Automatics
Stella’s Got A Fella – Social Security
Chloroform – The Bleach Boys
Jilted John – Jilted John
Rat Up A Drainpipe – The Members
Glandular Angela – The Exits
Why Don’t You Do Me Right? – Alternative Tv

Disc Two

The Day The World Turned Day-Glo – X-Ray Spex
Up Against The Wall – Tom Robinson Band
Central Detention Centre – Gyro
Ain’t Got A Clue – The Lurkers
The Backstreet Boys – Patrik Fitzgerald
Nobody Loves You When You’re Old And Gay – Dead Fingers Talk
I Can’t Resist – The Reaction
I Can’t Wait – The Jolt
Kinnel Tommy – Ed Banger
Loving A Killer – The Stoat
A.C.A.B. – The Rowdies
Start All Over Again – No Sweat
I Believe – The V.I.P.S
2ne1 – The Carpettes
Ghosts Of Princes In Towers – Rich Kids
Kung Fu International – John Cooper Clarke
Ringing In The Streets – The Ripchords
Slow Motion – Ultravox
Love Is Blind – Nightshift
Rock’n’roll Ain’t Dead – The Questions
Cortina Cowboys – Blue Steam
Birmingham Reggie – The Others
Live In A Car – UK Subs
It’s Alright – The Turn
Teenage Vice – The Teardrops
Heads Down No Nonsense Mindless Boogie – Alberto Y Lost Trios Paranoias

Disc Three

Public Image – Public Image Ltd
Alternative Ulster – Stiff Little Fingers
Light At Your Window – The Detonators
Fibre – Spizzoil
Life’s A Gamble – Penetration
28/8/78 – Scritti Politti
Europeans – Europeans
Take The Cash (K.A.S.H.) – Wreckless Eric
You Can’t Put Your Arms Around A Memory – Johnny Thunders
The Saints Are Coming – Skids
It’s The New Thing – The Fall
Alphaville – The Monochrome Set
In The Crowd – The Jam
Starry Eyes – The Records
Weekend Girl – The Bozos
Destination Venus – The Rezillos
Flashing In The Subway – Tyla Gang
10:15 Saturday Night – The Cure
Larger Than Life – The Parrots
Wrong Street – Nicky & The Dots
New Town – The Vitamins
Love Song – Passage
What She Wants, She Needs – Eater
Never Met Suzi – Time Machine
White Christmas – Slush





News: Tears For Fears ‘The Seeds of Love’ reissue (CD, deluxe box-set and vinyl)

19 08 2020

The long-awaited reissue of Tears For Fears‘ 1989 album The Seeds of Love is now available.

The reissue is available in a number of formats, including a deluxe double CD, remastered vinyl and the most interesting version, a CD / Bluray box-set.

The boxset edition (which like the previous TFF box-sets, is likely to sell-out at some point down the line) includes a Steven Wilson 5.1 surround sound mix on the bluray, whilst the other 4 CDs in the boxset contain a remaster of the album, a CD of b-sides, remixes and edits plus two CD’s of unreleased audio (including alt mixes and demos).

The booklet for the box-set includes interviews and notes by Paul Sinclair who runs the excellent Super Deluxe Edition website.

Available now:

The Seeds Of Love [5 disc Boxset] from Amazon

The Seeds Of Love (2 CD Deluxe) from Amazon

The Seeds Of Love [Remastered Vinyl] from Amazon





Tim Bowness – Late Night Laments album review

7 07 2020

Tim Bowness releases his latest solo album, Late Night Laments, on Inside Out Music on August 28th 2020.

The album is available in a double-CD package version as well as on vinyl (including a limited edition blue vinyl from Burning Shed). Late Night Laments was co-produced by Bowness and Brian Hulse, mixed by Steven Wilson, with mastering by Calum Malcolm (The Blue Nile, Prefab Sprout). The album’s beautiful artwork is by Jarrod Gosling (I Monster/Regal Worm).

Late Night Laments is consistent in the mood and pace of the music, but is widely unpredictable lyrically – touching on generational divides, ideologically motivated violence, social exclusion, and a much-loved children’s author’s mental breakdown.

Opening with the most musically uplifting track, Northern Rain sets the scene for the rest of the album. Icy cold 80s synths and minimal percussion are the order of the day throughout. Northern Rain is a mix of The Blue Nile, topped up with the pop melancholy of Deacon Blue’s masterful Raintown (in part due to the backing vocals from Melanie Woods).

“the world we knew is dying,
and maybe that’s okay”

The temperature drops further for I’m Better Now, with dark lyrics and heavily processed Björk Vespertine era beats. A performance highlight on this track is the guitar work from Kavus Torabi, that sits atop the washes of chilling synths.

“two seconds of hate,
a lifetime of grieving –
I couldn’t wait to stick the knife in”

Darkline has a feel of no-man’s returning jesus, with the discordant angular arpeggios, and featuring some fine synth work from Richard Barbieri, who Tim worked with on the Flame album.

“I turn to rust as the planet burns”

We Caught The Light features Bowness on “several echoed ukuleles”, that underpin the song and add its initial rhythm. The double bass from Colin Edwin and drums from Evan Carson add a mid-70s feel, and the vocal arrangement is constantly evolving, especially on the end section, where Bowness is joined again by Kavus Torabi and Melanie Wood (Knifeworld).

The Hitman Who Missed contains one of the strongest arrangements on the album, from sparse bass and piano instrumentation to a more expansive middle section, that drops and re-builds at several points. Another song that harks back to earlier times, with some lovely vibraphone from Tom Atherton, who proves that there is room for the instrument beyond Left Bank Two (Take Hart).

Photo by Mark Wood

Credit must go to Tim’s main musical foil on this album. Brian Hulse adds keyboards, occasional guitar and some fascinating drum programming throughout Late Night Laments.

One of the most emotional tracks is one of the sparsest, with Never A Place. Bowness often writes songs that are built on repeating, decaying and evolving riffs, and this is a perfect example. The melodies grow from inbetween the slabs of heavily processed sequenced keyboards and noise, and deliver something unique and unexpected. A definite album highlight for me, and a track I find myself returning to often. And the vibraphone is back for this song too, another plus point for me.

The Last Getaway arrangement reminds me somewhat of a gentler exploration (than no-man’s soft shoulders from flowermouth) of Suzanne Vega’s experimentation on her 99.9F° album. This is the heartbreaking song that Tim describes as being about a much-loved children’s author.

“I hated how I’d feel,
so I struck the only deal.”

Hidden Life would not have sounded out of place on the first Bowness / Chilvers album. A cheap drum machine and just Bowness / Hulse, no guest contributors here.

A combination of the musical nods to The Associates (Breakfast) and the instrumentation / arrangement gives a real late night 80s feel as the album heads to its conclusion.

One Last Call is a perfect end to the album, and my favourite lyric and vocal performance on the album. The song is heart-wrenching, and is up there with Post-its, truenorth, Dancing For You and Nowhere Good To Go in the sad songs say so much category.

The mood reminds me a little of the delicate If Leaving Me Is Easy from Face Value. In fact, Phil Collins would have killed for this song back in the early 80s. The good news is, Tim does not have a paint pot on his piano, so all appears good in the house of Bowness.

“I thought that I was empty
and empty I’d remain”

One Last Call evokes the weightless feel of the early hours, and before you know it, the album abruptly ends, leaving you wanting more, so back to the beginning you go.

Photo by Mark Wood

Whilst this is musically a million miles away from Lost In The Ghost Light, Late Night Laments shares a musical cohesion that makes for a very rewarding and emotional listening experience, and the album holds a unique and satisfying position in the Bowness solo catalogue.

PRE-ORDER THE ALBUM

Buy the album on CD and vinyl (including an exclusive blue vinyl) from Burning Shed

Buy the Late Night Laments CD from Amazon

Late Night Laments (38:50)

  1. Northern Rain (4.49)
  2. I’m Better Now (3.52)
  3. Darkline (3.57)
  4. We Caught The Light (3.56)
  5. The Hitman Who Missed (3.21)
  6. Never A Place (4.41)
  7. The Last Getaway (4.55)
  8. Hidden Life (5.05)
  9. One Last Call (4.15)

Produced by Tim Bowness and Brian Hulse
Mixed by Steven Wilson
Mastered by Calum Malcolm

Northern Rain, Darkline, The Hitman Who Missed, Never A Place and The Last Getaway written by Tim Bowness and Brian Hulse

I’m Better Now, We Caught The Light and One Last Call, written by Tim Bowness

Hidden Life written by Tim Bowness, Brian Hulse and Pete Morgan

Tim Bowness – vocals / backing vocals / synths 2, 9 / samples 2, 9 / ukuleles 4 / fx 2, 6
Brian Hulse – synths / keyboards / guitars / programmed drums / backing vocals 4

with

Tom Atherton – vibraphone 1, 4, 5, 6, 9
Richard Barbieri – synths and synth solos 3, 7
Evan Carson – drums and percussion 1, 4
Colin Edwin – double bass 4, 5, 9
Alistair ‘The Curator’ Murphy – dianatron 5
Kavus Torabi – glissando guitar and guitar solo 2 / backing vocals 4
Melanie Woods – backing vocals 1, 2, 4

The bonus disc on the CD edition features five unreleased pieces, four from the Late Night Laments sessions and one – featuring Peter Hammill and Adam Holzman – a Flowers At The Scene outtake.

Cheerleaders For The Damned (extras)

The Other Side (4.11)
Beauty In Decay (3.43)
Beyond The Firing Line (4.19)
Cheerleader For The Damned (2.52)
War Games By The Sea (3.00)





News: Prince – Sign O’ The Times | Remastered & Expanded

25 06 2020

The Prince Estate is continuing to release his studio albums in expanded form, complete with material from his legendary Vault. Considered by many to be his masterpiece, Sign O’ The Times is being issued on vinyl and CD, remastered and overflowing with extras.

The super deluxe edition (8 CD and 1 DVD) includes all the audio material that Prince officially released in 1987, as well as 45 previously unreleased studio songs recorded between May 1979 and July 1987, and a complete live audio performance from the June 20 1987 show on the Sign O’ The Times Tour at Stadium Galgenwaard in Utrecht, The Netherlands.

Also included is a brand-new DVD containing the complete, previously unreleased New Year’s Eve benefit concert at Paisley Park on December 31 1987, which was Prince’s final performance of the Sign O’ The Times Tour stage show and his only on-stage collaboration with jazz legend Miles Davis.

Weighing in at a hefty price, this is a real collectors edition – and includes a 120-page hardcover book with previously unseen images and hand-written lyrics.

The super deluxe edition (like the 1999 super-deluxe) is likely to sell-out, and become a collectors item. If you are fan of Prince, the super deluxe is a treasure trove of unreleased music, plus one of the greatest albums of all time in remastered form. Dig deep, it will be worth it!

Pre-order the Super-Deluxe CD edition

Super Deluxe Edition 8 CD+ DVD Set

Remastered Album (CD 1)

Sign O’ The Times
Play In The Sunshine
Housequake
The Ballad Of Dorothy Parker
It
Starfish And Coffee
Slow Love
Hot Thing
Forever In My Life

Remastered Album (CD 2)

U Got The Look
If I Was Your Girlfriend
Strange Relationship
I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man
The Cross
It’s Gonna Be A Beautiful Night
Adore

Single Mixes & Edits (CD 3)

Sign O’ The Times (7” single edit)
La, La, La, He, He, Hee (7” single edit)
La, La, La, He, He, Hee (Highly Explosive) (7” single edit)
If I Was Your Girlfriend (7” single edit)
Shockadelica (“If I Was Your Girlfriend” B-side)
Shockadelica (12” long version)
U Got the Look (Long Look) (12” edit)
Housequake (7” edit)
Housequake (7 Minutes MoQuake)
I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man (Fade 7” edit)
Hot Thing (7” single edit)
Hot Thing (Extended Remix)
Hot Thing (Dub Version)

Vault, Part 1 (CD 4)

All tracks previously unreleased

I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man (1979 version)
Teacher, Teacher (1985 version)
All My Dreams
Can I Play With U? (featuring Miles Davis)
Wonderful Day (original version)
Strange Relationship (original version)
Visions
The Ballad Of Dorothy Parker (with horns)
Witness 4 The Prosecution (version 1)
Power Fantastic (live in studio)
And That Says What?
Love And Sex
A Place In Heaven (Prince vocal)
Colors
Crystal Ball (7” mix)
Big Tall Wall (version 1)
Nevaeh Ni Ecalp A
In A Large Room With No Light

Vault, Part 2 (CD 5)

All tracks previously unreleased

Train
It Ain’t Over ‘Til The Fat Lady Sings
Eggplant (Prince vocal)
Everybody Want What They Don’t Got
Blanche
Soul Psychodelicide
The Ball
Adonis And Bathsheba
Forever In My Life (early vocal studio run-through)
Crucial (alternate lyrics)
The Cocoa Boys
When The Dawn Of The Morning Comes
Witness 4 The Prosecution (version 2)
It Be’s Like That Sometimes

Vault, Part 3 (CD 6)

All tracks previously unreleased

Emotional Pump
Rebirth Of The Flesh (with original outro)
Cosmic Day
Walkin’ In Glory
Wally
I Need A Man
Promise To Be True
Jealous Girl (version 2)
There’s Something I Like About Being Your Fool
Big Tall Wall (version 2)
A Place In Heaven (Lisa vocal)
Wonderful Day (12” mix)
Strange Relationship (1987 Shep Pettibone Club Mix)

Live In Utrecht (CD 7 & CD 8)

All tracks previously unreleased

Intro/Sign O’ The Times
Play In The Sunshine
Little Red Corvette
Housequake
Girls & Boys
Slow Love
Take The “A” Train/Pacemaker/I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man
Hot Thing
Four (With Sheila E. Drum Solo)
If I Was Your Girlfriend
Let’s Go Crazy
When Doves Cry
Purple Rain
1999
Forever In My Life
Kiss
The Cross
It’s Gonna Be A Bea
utiful Night

Live At Paisley Park – December 31, 1987 (DVD)

All tracks previously unreleased

Sign O’ The Times
Play In The Sunshine
Little Red Corvette
Erotic City
Housequake
Slow Love
Do Me, Baby
Adore
I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man
What’s Your Name Jam
Let’s Pretend We’re Married
Delirious
Jack U Off
Drum Solo
Twelve
Hot Thing
If I Was Your Girlfriend
Let’s Go Crazy
When Doves Cry
Purple Rain
1999
U Got The Look
It’s Gonna Be A Beautiful Night Medley (featuring Miles Davis)

Please note – video content is exclusive to the physical DVD and will not appear on digital download or streaming versions of the Super Deluxe Edition set.

Pre-order the 3 CD edition

Deluxe Edition 3 CD Set
Remastered Album + Single Mixes & Edits

Remastered Album (Disc 1)

Sign O’ The Times
Play In The Sunshine
Housequake
The Ballad Of Dorothy Parker
It
Starfish And Coffee
Slow Love
Hot Thing
Forever In My Life

Remastered Album (Disc 2)

U Got The Look
If I Was Your Girlfriend
Strange Relationship
I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man
The Cross
It’s Gonna Be A Beautiful Night
Adore

Single Mixes & Edits (Disc 3)

Sign O’ The Times (7” single edit)
La, La, La, He, He, Hee (7” single edit)
La, La, La, He, He, Hee (Highly Explosive) (7” single edit)
If I Was Your Girlfriend (7” single edit)
Shockadelica (“If I Was Your Girlfriend” B-side)
Shockadelica (12” long version)
U Got the Look (Long Look) (12” edit)
Housequake (7” edit)
Housequake (7 Minutes MoQuake)
I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man (Fade 7” edit)
Hot Thing (7” single edit)
Hot Thing (Extended Remix)
Hot Thing (Dub Version)








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