Friday, 31 August 2018

Another Bouquet on the Grave of Free Enterprise (1982) C60

This is, I'm afraid, the last of my Dead Hedgehog tapes, and possibly my favourite by virtue of how many hits it yielded - To Hell with the Carnival, The New Breed, Celia's Crazy, and Architecture being way up in my personal list of favourite songs ever to come from a humble cassette, and of course the magnificent Flying Beechcraft who really should have been massive on the strength of their three songs that I've heard - Tez Mitchell and their contributions to the similarly excellent Thing from the Crypt, which you really need to buy, if you don't have it already.
Most of what you need to know is detailed on the cover, which I've scanned, and which is A4 because this was one of those wilfully annoying tapes with artwork folded to the size of a 7" single and inserted into a plastic cover of similar dimensions. You've probably heard of the Swell Maps and the Apostles. You will have heard of Mex if you've been following this blog. Magits was the guy or possibly guys who ended up forming Rudimentary Peni. Cult of the Supreme Being were Mex and the late, great Robert Dellar as memorialised in this book.
Anyway, I asked Mex if he had anything he felt like saying for this blog post, and thusly didst he speak:
Twenty-first century reflections on
Another Bouquet on the Grave of Free Enterprise, 1982

It's funny how something from your past is almost erased from memory until it's brought up again, then it suddenly feels like it occurred only yesterday with every detail falling back into place. Well that's the scenario for me with these tapes the late Robert Dellar and I used to compile and distribute back at the beginning of the '80s, when DIY indie music culture hit its pinnacle.

Our main motive for doing it was because much of the material was never going to have any other outlet if we didn't do something about it, but primarily because it was just fun to do and it kept us off the streets!

Ultimately the scene was small and it was primarily friends and friends of friends who ended up getting these tapes in their possession. Probably at most only around a hundred and fifty people got to hear each cassette, although that's a damn sight more than would have heard the music outside of the gigs, had we not issued them in the first place.

Another Bouquet came on the back heels of its predecessor Bouquet of Barbed Wire, which was by far one of our most favoured releases. To my mind Another Bouquet had a more diverse and slightly extra developed sense to it from the aforementioned tape, with the fantastic S-Haters 1980 opener, which I adored, especially the tremendous and incredibly powerful intro performed on it by Fiona Branson. That was the highlight of the compilation for me, although there are other little gems in there that bring back great memories from a more carefree time, which evoked an energy that anything was possible and the world was our oyster. On top of that we were all little rascals and if you told us you couldn't do something, rest assured we'd sure enough find a way to do it! So although our compilation releases didn't echo those with the gloss by corporates such as K-Tel, only being produced on standard shop bought cassettes, photocopied sleeves and sold via mail order (eat your heart out Amazon, we were ahead of the game!), our passion exceeded all, demonstrating where there’s a will, there’s a way.

We didn't exactly set the world on fire but we did produce a microscopic alternative in music against the mainstream of that time, which not only provided us with a backdrop to our own youth, but for a few others as well. With that we are left with great memories and some marginal music that astoundingly still resonates in certain quarters today, and is kept alive all these years on with its continued elevation by progressive luminaries such as Lawrence Burton and Dark Entries Records' Josh Cheon. That is testament alone and makes me gratified to have been involved with a whole scene and bunch of interesting creatives at the time, proving our youth certainly wasn't wasted on the young!
- Paul Mex
Original DIY music architect, DHE co-founder and music producer

1 - S-Haters - 1980
2 -
Gambit of Shame - To Hell with the Carnival
3 -
Kable Truth - Split Head on Paper
4 -
Flying Beechcraft - Tez Mitchell
5 -
Mex - Born to be Killed
6 -
Apostles - Red
7 -
Crunchy Christians - Ask Joe
8 -
Magits - A Pawn in the Game
9 -
Cliff Silver's Stormtroopers from Hell - Extramarital Affair
10 -
Swell Maps - Spitfire Parade
11 -
Cult of the Supreme Being - The New Breed
12 -
Khmer Rouge - Take Me (Across the Floor Tonight) in Dub
13 -
Leitmotiv - I'm Going to Run
14 -
Angry Dufflecoats - Celia's Crazy
15 -
Jasbir Chhina - All My Loving
16 -
Flash Butler's Jazzmen - Architecture

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