Monday, 18 April 2016

v/a - Moraals (1985) 2C90

I'd already done one compilation tape, and I wanted to do another, but an hour just didn't seem long enough to include stuff from all the people I knew, either by mail or in person; so a double C90 set it was, and I figured I may as well throw in some sort of accompanying booklet of band artwork seeing as that was what everyone else had been doing, or at least what Larry Peterson had been doing. By the time it all eventually came together I had moved out of my parents' place and was half way through taking a degree at Maidstone College of Art, and the thing had been dragging on for ages. My enthusiasm was therefore probably a little diminished, although honestly it probably didn't make a lot of difference. The thing was always going to be what it was, although I gather certain contributors were somehow shocked when their contributor copies turned up in the post, having somehow garnered the impression that I was some kind of luxuriously funded arts institute and individual copies of Moraals were to be presented as 180g collectors' vinyl discs encased within a hand crafted marble lecturn supporting a hardbound edition of artwork pressed in gold leaf on hand crafted paper. I was fucking eighteen and financed by pocket money, a paper round, and then a student grant, most of which I spent on beer and fags. It was the best I could manage at the time, and bollocks because I still think it sounds pretty great. The "booklet" was actually hand photocopied sheets inside an artisan clear plastic envelope of the kind purchased in packs of twenty from WHSmiths, but then I wasn't going to blow half my grant at the printers without some sort of indication that people might actually buy the thing. I sold a few copies as I recall, but not many, although my publicity machine was kind of winding down by that point. Yes, that's probably the reason.

Anyway, here's the lot - all three fucking hours of it split into two separate downloads so as not to clog up your internet connection and spoil the enjoyment of anyone who happens to be watching episodes of Ice Road Truckers on Netflix in the next room. The cassette cover - as designed by Klive Humberstone of Tex Mirror H, who also suggested the title - is included with the second download, and both cassettes had the same cover, in case you were wondering why there only seems to be one of them. Also included in the second download is a folder containing scans of all of the booklet artwork I have at my disposal. The pages for Mex and Opera For Infantry are missing as they all featured naughty pictures which I felt uneasy about stuffing into my luggage when I flew back to England to retrieve this material, and I'm not sure there ever was any Family Patrol Group artwork.

Mex produced some of the greatest pop music ever recorded so far as I was concerned, and it was a great moment when he sent me a tape for my compilation. I would have punched the air if I'd been American back then. He is still in existence today, and you should conduct further investigations here.; Trilogy was my friend Thomas Docherty (not to be confused with etc. etc.), author of some of the greatest weirdy sounds of that whole era, and I'll be ripping some more of his old tapes once I can rescue them from across the seas but if you're unable to wait, have a rummage in his YouTube channel.; Members of Tex Mirror H achieved wider recognition as In The Nursery and, as I say, Klive provided the cover and title of this compilation. They also had a track on an Adventures In Reality compilation.; Saul Pol Koatep was half of AOT 418 who released tapes through both myself and Anal Probe and others. I think they had something to do with the New Blockaders, and Saul was behind the Hypnagogia label, if anyone remembers that.; Do Easy was obviously myself, apparently trying hard to turn into John Cougar Mellencamp at the time of recording, although I definitely don't remember it as a conscious ambition. Still, the other two tracks are all right, I suppose.; The RSM, standing for Rob, Shend, and Mart, were an improvised music project initiated by my friend Martin, who also contributed as Mart E. Knee. The Shend and the Rob in question were Cravats and later Very Things whom Martin knew fairly well, having been a founding member of the former. Martin's YouTube channel can be found here.; Scram Ju Ju was David Lebens-Wankling, formerly of Urge with the semi-legendary Kevin Harrison, and whom I first encountered as a contributor to Gary Levermore's Rising from the Red Sand compilation. Apparently I was the first person to write to him as a result of the Third Mind tape, which is kind of depressing. He should have done a song about a murderer or summink.; Anarchist Angels were a bloke called Steve from Sunbury-on-Thames plus friends, and their As the Innocent Suffer tape remains one of my all time anarchopunk faves and is as such due for a ripping just as soon as I can get hold of my copy. Steve's tracks are probably my personal favourites of the whole compilation, possibly excepting those by Opera For Infantry, who of course later scared the living shit out of everyone as the Grey Wolves. Trev said something in his letter like we were feeling a bit sad when we recorded this stuff, and he's probably ashamed of it these days, but I still think these two tracks are wonderful. I also have a tape of Opera For Infantry rehearsing as a punk band with guitar, drums, and Trev yelping about TV standing for technological valium - just trying something different, and another one for the retrieval list.; Thee Unkommuniti, as you're probably aware, was Tim who later achieved wider recognition with Stereolab, of whom you can hear formative traces in this stuff if you listen closely. Vinyl-on-Demand put out a boxed set of Unkommuniti material a while back, but it costs about a million quid and anyway I still have all the tapes, thank you very much.; Lead Shoes were two Steves from my degree course, one of whom was much nicer than the other one and with whom I am still in touch on friendface. I think he's some sort of dance/techno luminary these days.; Also from my degree course was Paul Mercer who named his thing after a phrase in an article about bats which described them as Acrobatic Champions. For some reason he found this funny, but then he was kind of gothic in certain respects, and I always thought his music was excellent - in fact I still do, even though apparently we hate each other's guts these days - and there is some more of it here.; NKVD is Glenn from Konstruktivists who sent me these early versions of tracks which ended up on Black December.; I started writing to Family Patrol Group after I saw them supporting Whitehouse in Birmingham. They had split by the time I was putting together this compilation, but Colin suggested I lift some sections of noise from their tape Fear Death By Water, which was what I did.; and the rest were mostly people I was writing to or swapping tapes with at the time.

1 - (introduction)
2 - Mex - The Kid is a Little Monster
3 - Trilogy - Do Not Forgive Them
4 - Tex Mirror H - Out of Reach
5 - Saul Pol Koatep - Thou Shalt Not Kill
6 - Morris Dolby & the Bouncy Lobster Band - Len Fairclough
7 - Human Trapped Rhythms - Fish Tale
8 - Tryouts - Superior Human Beings
9 - Do Easy - Inspecting the Experimental Grain Fields at Ostia Near Rome
10 - The RSM - Rounds A No. 14
11 - Scram Ju Ju - After All
12 - Anarchist Angels - One in a Million
13 - Help! Help! I've Got My Head Stuck Down the Bog! - I'm In Love (With My Lavatory)
14 - Unkommuniti - Winterkill
15 - Do Easy - Nobody Can Describe How We Truly Feel
16 - David James - Pooh Disease
17 - Lead Shoes - Baseball on Sunday
18 - Anarchist Angels - Sick But A Shepherd
19 - NKVD - Eastern Vein III
20 - Acrobatic Champions - Three Minutes
21 - Scram Ju Ju - Ruled by the Heart
22 - Opera For Infantry - Time Is...


1 - David James - Untitled
2 - Tryouts - If You Take Advantage of Me
3 - Human Trapped Rhythms -The Message (Roll Down and Die)
4 - Tex Mirror H - Absorption
5 - Family Patrol Group - Extreme Nature
6 - Mart E. Knee - Bone Structure
7 - Unkommuniti - To Us Unseen
8 - Anarchist Angels - Untitled
9 - Do Easy - Our Tune
10 - Opera For Infantry - It's Later Than It's Ever Been
11 - Lead Shoes - Sniffing Glue
12 - WEOJ - Pyromania
13 - Family Patrol Group - The Fight Is On
14 - Acrobatic Champions - Order and Disorder
15 - Cause For Concern - Me Mucking About
16 - Anarchist Angels - Force His Mind
17 - NKVD - Eastern Vein IV
18 - Do Easy - Pair of Trousers
19 - AOT 418 - Beckie's Mission
20 - Morris Dolby & the Bouncy Lobster Band - Eggy Soldiers
21 - Family Patrol Group - Fear Death by Water
22 - Mex - Simplicity

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  1. It would be amazing to hear the Opera for Infantry punk tape that you mentioned. Please check if you can find the comptape on Selbstmord Organisation with Do Easy on it.

    1. Yes, they're all on the list. It will be a while yet as the rest of my tapes are all in a box back in England, and I live in Texas, so it will be whenever I next fly back to England - some time later this year, but I'm not yet sure when. Don't worry though - those tapes are my top priority and I know where they all are. Only reason I don't have them here is I had no room left in the suitcase when I came back with the current batch.

    2. Ah that is great news :) This page is among my favourite bookmarks anyway. Thank you!

  2. Thanks again for all these brilliant stuff you share.

  3. Thank you for your kind comments about Tryouts. Watch out for our new material - after 30 years- early 2019. Thank you Lawrence for your brilliant site.

    1. I knew you would be out there somewhere, Jon! Let me know about the new material - old stuff still stands up very well!

  4. At last Lawrence, “UNFINISHED BUSINESS”
    By TRYOUTS is finished and available on

    Spotify, google play,kkbox, amazon and I tunes! and CD.

    Rob and Jon really appreciate everyone’s support. Facebook: Teyouts Band Page.

  5. Hi Lawrence. Great memories - (not always remembered) - i recall the imagery, but not linking it to your compilation. Researching Tex Mirror H again online because Cherry Records are soon to release a 5 CD Sheffield Compilation in 2019. All the best Klive

    1. Be good to hear more Tex Mirror H material. aside from the above I'm only aware of the track on Alan's compilation.