Monday, 19 August 2019

Allegory (1992) C40

Allegory was a compilation put together by Mark of Impulse, the only one which wasn't associated with an issue of the mag, and, so far as I recall, dating to the time he was making a go of running his thing as a label - see also Konstruktivists AGM tape and the Muslimgauze 7" he released. I'm sure you're both all familiar with most of the contributors here - Pure Motorised Instinct was Stephen Jarvis from Nagamatzu, Tautologize represents Mark's brief tenure as part of the factor X pyramid scheme, and so on and so forth.

To briefly adopt my Negative Neddy persona, I have to say, thirty years later and I'm still fucking mystified by the brief descent into industrial rock karaoke with underwhelming cover versions of chart smashers by Front 242 and the Throbbing Gristles, not least because I seem to recall Another Headache being somewhat better than this one might suggest; but never mind. Maybe it's just me. Once over those particular humps, the tape settles into a very pleasing rhythm of not-quite-ambient sound conlcuding with Dark Star's stunning P2C2E.

There was also a tiny wee booklet of artwork with this one, some related, some not at all related and therefore maybe pertaining to persons who failed to stump up their tracks in time (guessing here), so I've scanned that and it's included in the download.

1 - Pure Motorised Instinct - Shaking Death's Hand
2 -
Voltoid - Tragedy for You
3 -
Another Headache - Hamburger Lady
4 -
Antonym - Cinnamon Air
5 -
The Impulse fX - Tautologize
6 -
Attrition - The Third House
7 -
Brume - Suck Your Bones
8 -
Konstruktivists - Untitled II
9 -
Dark Star - P2C2E
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Friday, 9 August 2019

Power to Destroy (1993) 2C60

Usual terms and conditions apply regarding imagery which is probably supposed to upset you, aside from which, Trev really surpassed himself with the packaging of this one and probably would have won a design award were it not for all the pictures of rotting corpses. The cover was photocopied onto card, with each one presumably individually assembled so as to resemble something like a cigar box, with the tapes kept in a slide out tray thing. The tape itself was likewise pretty decent, with a fair bit of sonic variety, and certainly more than you might have expected from the scarier end of the electronic landscape. A few of these are unlikely to require any introduction (and the Ramleh track is blistering, by the way), and I'm sure you're perfectly capable of Googling the others, because I've never heard of them either.

Four of these tracks actually came from me, these being the work of Konstruktivists (of which I was a member at the time), Family of Noise, and Dada X (both of which are represented elsewhere on this blog, so please feel free to have a poke around in the index linked at the foot of this entry) and, at the risk of offending purists, I've actually replaced the tracks as digitised from my copy of the compilation with copies digitised from the master tapes. So they're the exact same tracks, just better quality through not being fourth generation copies.

1 - Final Solution - Right to Hate
2 -
M. Behrens / Junta - Soundtrack for Original Torture Performance
3 -
Agony for Pleasure - Primal Scream
4 -
Konstruktivists - Monsieur Y
5 -
Sudden Infant - Destroy Your Manipulators
6 -
MAUTHAUSEN - Kill the P.A.S.T. (1992)
7 -
Con-Dom - Patriotism
8 -
Ramleh - Melt the Cube (live)
9 -
Family of Noise - Upwards and Outwards
10 -
Genocide Organ - Kill Useless Nations
11 -
Had.It - Interrogatorio a Pietro Maso
12 -
Academy 23 / Grey Wolves - Terror Intensifies
13 - Exit
14 -
Smell & Quim - Cunnilinguaphone
15 -
Family of Noise - Sometimes I
16 -
Taint - Orifice Training
17 -
Dada X - Chocolate Disco
18 -
M. Behrens - Splatterdance (II)
19 -
Sudden Infant - Birth is the Beginning of Destruction
20 -
Nailchrist - Nails and Blood
21 -
Third Organ - Fuck Your Organs
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Monday, 5 August 2019

Raw Opium Enema (1994) C60

I've nearly digitised all of my compilations now, with only Impulse mag's Allegory and Trev Ward's Power to Destroy (next week probably) still to be transmogrified, so far as I can work out. This one escaped the routine sweeps because I had it under M on the shelf as a Mlehst tape, it being the work of the man behind Bandaged Hand Produce.

Aside from being one of those collections I always found exciting because you have no idea what the fuck is going to come out of the speakers when you first press play, this one is also distinguished by its exceptional sound quality, which seems to have been a thing with Bandaged Hand. I really should have picked up a few more of his tapes when it was still possible to do so.

1 - Brume - Ronde
2 -
Herb Mullin - Over and Over
3 -
factor X - Forever Roses
4 -
T.U.O.B. + Okaniwa Fumiharo - n.v.1
5 -
Expose Your Eyes - Absolute Spongiforms
6 -
Mlehst - Anal Dentist
7 -
Cacophony '33' - Riding the Aorta
8 -
Lunus - Introductione alla Terra
9 -
Expose Your Eyes - Bongo Trasho
10 -
Sof Tillan's And - Television Teenager
11 -
Cacophony '33' - Carboot (excerpt)
12 -
Defacato - Burnett

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Friday, 26 July 2019

His-Create-He - The Prison (1982) C20

I don't know anything about this lot. Larry Peterson sent me their demo when I was putting the first Do Easy compilation tape together. I really liked The Prison so I included it on the tape, assuming they would eventually get around to replying to my letters, which they didn't. Little did I realise that the track, presumably the same track, had already appeared on a compilation album called Sing As We Go, released the year before. Subsequent research has unearthed the fact of their having turned into something called Bzu-zu and contributed to a record called Pulsebeat, as described by this bloke. The above picture is actually of Bzu-zu taken from Discogs, which is all I could find.

There was originally a photocopied cover to the tape with the band name - which was definitely hyphenated - spelled out in old English script, and The Prison was titled as I've given it here, not as given on Sing As We Go, for what it may be worth; but it's now lost, I'm afraid. What information I managed to save is that the first three tracks were live at the Clarendon, Hammersmith on 8th of November, 1982; and The Prison was recorded at Golddust Studios, Sidcup on the 6th and 10th of November, 1982, and engineered by Mark of some band called Legend...

Fuck me.

Okay. I've just looked up Golddust Studios and it's the place I used to go to get all my War Drum tapes duplicated around the end of the nineties, and I remember the aforementioned Mark fairly well as he was a good laugh and his rates were very reasonable. What a small fucking world it is. Jesus.

Anyway, I need to have a bit of a sit down, so I'll leave you with His-Create-He who failed to set the world on fire but nevertheless managed a decent demo tape, and were patently of the era of Conflict, New Model Army, the Danse Society and the like.

Just this week I was listening to an old Princess Superstar CD when I realised that the music on one track had been done by a bloke to whom I used to deliver mail when I was a postman in SE London - in fact, I used to deliver his mail using the same Royal Mail bike on which I regularly cycled over to Bromley to get my tapes copied by the bloke who produced the track I used on a compilation tape back in the eighties. It's all connected.

What a week it has been.

1 - I Would
2 - Demon Dance
3 - Witchfinder General
4 - The Prison (that Jack Built)

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Monday, 22 July 2019

Scram Ju Ju - February 1984 (1984) C30

Firstly, just to get it out of the way, I found the above photograph on Mark Osbourne's excellent this is then, a photographic history of the Coventry music scene, so it's reproduced here with his kind permission. I didn't actually have any interesting images to accompany this week's tape and so image searched Dave Wankling, himself being Scram Ju Ju, only to discover he's the late Dave Wankling which is frankly a bit upsetting. I seem to recall Alan Rider mentioning that he'd seen the aforementioned Dave a while back (decades I think) and he hadn't been in a good way, therefore balls.

Anyway, Scram Ju Ju are probably remembered as the "normal band" on Third Mind's Rising from the Red Sand compilation (this was Dave's own sardonic description), but you may also recall Mr. Wankling from Urge, featuring the legendary Kevin Harrison, who had a couple of singles out, and of course as co-writer of Kevin's Ink Man - an absolute fucking corker from the Fly EP which you need to own if you don't already have it (downloadable from here but there's a vinyl version knocking around if you have a look). Anyway, I wrote to Dave when I was putting together the Moraals compilation, and we struck up a correspondence, and he sent me this tape. I think he was touched due to my apparently being the first person to bother to write to him having heard his track on Red Sand. So much for all those open-minded industrial weirdies. Maybe he should have knocked out a couple of Manson covers.

Big Beyond was the Red Sand track by the way. I copied it onto the end of the tape Dave sent because I'm a nerd, so I figured I may as well include it here and save you the million quid you would have spent on a Red Sand reissue.

As you will hear, Dave was a serious instrumental talent, and one can only wonder what else he might have done had this story had a happier ending.

1 - After All
2 - Ruled by the Heart
3 - Logic in Love
4 - Swelling
5 - It's a Hymn
6 - Big Beyond

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Monday, 15 July 2019

Orient Cycles - Nerves (1981) C10

This one will make sense mostly to those of a particular vintage living in or around Shipston-on-Stour, Warwickshire back at the start of the eighties, and may seem a little underwhelming to everyone else, so you have been warned. The Orient Cycles were our local mod band and featured Julian Caddy - or Cloppo as we knew him, for reasons I never fully understood - Huw James, and Chris Beer on the skins. I never saw them, but only knew them by repute, which admittedly wasn't very good and mainly consisted of one of the bigger kids referring to them as the Urine Cycles. Anyway, my little gang of hairy pals enjoyed a brief spell of hanging out with Cloppo down Shipston sportsfield one summer. He was older than us and very, very funny, plus being in a band automatically earned our admiration. I think this tape came from my friend Graham's older brother, Martin (of the Abstracts) - a rehearsal tape of a presumed Orient Cycles original, plus jamming based on Secret Affair's I'm Not Free (But I'm Cheap). I told you it wouldn't make much sense unless you already knew who they were.

The Dragon was of course the Green Dragon in Stratford-upon-Avon, recently converted into desirable luxury lifestyle units suitable for fucking wankers with neither a conscience nor a sense of history. I can't remember where I found the poster, but it may have been Jez Randall (also of the Abstracts) on facebook. Anyway, it was a photo taken on someone's phone so I did what I could to tidy it up a bit. I suspect it may have been the work of Cloppo as it seems consistent with what I can recall of his sense of humour.

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Friday, 5 July 2019

Headmen - 1986 Demo Tape (1986) C30

Here's some more material excavated from the tapes to which they were copied, and reconstructed much like one of the dinosaurs in Jurassic Park. The Headmen sent me the first six tracks inviting me to pick something for the third Do Easy compilation tape - which never happened, in case you were wondering. I think I was going to use Resolution, so the bloke did a new mix and sent it to me along with something else he'd been working on, so those are the last two tracks here. He also sent the above page for the proposed booklet which would accompany the tape, but obviously didn't in the end.

...and that's about as much as I know. I didn't keep the bloke's letters (hard to believe but I don't actually hang onto everything) although I have a vague impression of his name being Richard Smith, or Richard something, or maybe John Smith, or somebody or other Smith, and possibly from Redding... maybe. There were tracks by the Headmen on a couple of volumes of Mindscan Tapes' UK Electronics series which I assume would have been the same operation, so maybe Rob Maycock would have an idea, assuming he's out there somewhere.

Shame I don't know more because I was quite impressed with how expensive this material sounded - far from the usual tapes of people's lawnmowers I was getting sent at the time. It's something in the general vicinity of Nagamatzu or early Attrition if you need further inducement.

1 - Resolution
2 - Snake Eyed
3 - The Magus
4 - Waiting
5 - City 7
6 - Glass
7 - Resolution (version)
8 - Untitled

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Monday, 1 July 2019

Konstruktivists - 1983 Home Recordings (1983) C30

There was a time when I had a whole stack of tapes with just two or three tracks on them, these being things people had sent me, usually for inclusion on some compilation or other. Then at some point during the nineties, I filled up a few of these tapes (which were mostly blank excepting two or three tracks of the type described) with the two or three tracks from other mostly empty cassettes so as to have all of that stuff in one place, because I like things to be nice and tidy. This week, for the sake of a change of pace I've digitised a couple of the resulting C90s with the plan to release them back into the wild in their original form just as nature intended (except for these being downloads rather than physical tapes, obviously), so here we go...

This one was Glenn of Konstruktivists filling up one side of a C60 for tracks I might use on the first Do Easy compilation, and I should probably also mention that I further milked the same Kow a couple of years later when it came to putting together this one. Anyway, as the tape Glenn sent me was one which I filled with other people's stuff on side two, this was my master and is hence probably marginally better quality than is the same material as it appeared on the Do Easy tapes. I've a feeling I may also have nicked one of the bass patterns for Dada X, while we're here.

Glenn sent this just before Black December, the third Konstruktivists album, was issued by Third Mind and you may recognise a couple of the Eastern Vein demos as formative versions of material which turned up on that album - I can't be arsed to check which ones, and I've a feeling that the other two may therefore be tracks which were never expanded upon. I vaguely remember Glenn telling me that at the time of recording this material, he usually worked on his music at home on a four-track portastudio, then transferred the portastudio tapes to eight or possibly sixteen track at IPS and pumped them up into the versions we've heard on the records. I've also included a scan of the letter Glenn wrote when he sent me this tape in the download in case it's of any interest.

1 - Mansonik 2 (version)
2 - Eastern Vein I
3 - Eastern Vein II
4 - Eastern Vein III
5 - Eastern Vein IV
6 - Bass Pattern I
7 - Bass Pattern II


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Friday, 21 June 2019

The Sound of Hate 5 (1992) C60

...and here's the other one I have, dating from the highlighter pen years. You will have heard of all of the contributors, or you won't have. I don't know. Maybe you could have a look on the internet or something.

Another decent collection. I probably should have stocked up on these back when it was an option, but I always seemed to be skint. Oh well. Not sure why Cacophony '33' was just a number on this one. Maybe he was skint too and couldn't afford the extra letters. Unusually attentive readers will probably notice I've changed all instances of the term extract, as featured on the cover, to excerpt because it are seems more grammarfied. An excerpt can be from a longer piece of music, whereas extract is usually from almonds and may be used when forming cakes, unless you're Steve Fricker. Sorry. It bothered me.

1 - '33' - Cacultocophony (excerpt I)
2 -
La Función de Repulsa - Kill The Toreros Cabro #87
3 -
Taint - #3. III
4 -
Academy 23 - Homage to Anton La Vey
5 -
Another Headache - Twilight's Last Gleaming
6 -
Maylin Pact - Almost Not Quite (excerpt)
7 -
Grey Wolves - Nacht und Nebel
8 -
'33' - Cacultocophony (excerpt II)
9 -
Academy 23 - Terrorphilia
10 -
Another Headache - Cacophony Concerto, Third Movement
11 -
Mindscan - Distress
12 -
Grey Wolves - Cold Steel Odour

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Monday, 17 June 2019

The Sound of Hate 3 (1991) C60

Please refer to previous posts if you're still working on the assumption that the Grey Wolves were actually a Combat 18 recruitment tool as opposed to, you know, just ramming it right down our throats in the hope that maybe we might wake the fuck up. Cheers.
The Sound of Hate was a series of five (to the best of my knowledge) compilation tapes issued by Trev in the early nineties, of which I have just two volumes - this one and five which I'll probably post next week. What surprised me the most about this one, having dug it out of the pile and slapped it in the deck, is that the general sound is a lot more varied than you might expect - plenty of noise, but other elements too, which makes for genuinely unpredictable and exciting listening in my book. Most of the tracks appear on the tape without breaks, so presenting two continuous blocks of sound, and I've more or less edited it in keeping with this ideal rather than inserting the two seconds digital silence at the end of each track as I usually do. This also means that in a couple of cases I found it difficult to tell where certain tracks ended, giving way to something else, so hopefully my application of titles matches the actual material. If not, blame Trev back in 1991.

If you've read this far, I'm assuming you will be at least as familiar with a couple of these names as I am, thus saving me the effort of introductions or explaining how one might use the internet to look stuff up on Discogs. We all remember Pessary and factor X, don't we?

1 - AX 66 - Intensifier
2 -
Traitor - Scum
3 -
Pessary - Untitled (part three)
4 -
Pessary - Untitled (part seven)
5 -
MØHR - Ein Neubeginn
6 -
Enema Och Gejonte - Dedicated to Cantor Hyman Millman
7 -
Batchas - Myiase Tape Extract
8 -
Allimentation Generale - Myiase Tape Extract
9 -
Mindscan - The Pain is the Pleasure
10 - (exit to side one)
11 - (introduction to side two)
12 -
Traitor - XK2.521
13 -
MØHR - Das Ende Einer Famile
14 -
Pessary - Untitled (part twenty-two)
15 -
factor X - Untitled
16 -
Grey Wolves - Sex Death Ritual
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Saturday, 8 June 2019

Operation Mind Control - Receiver Generation (1991) C40

I'm not sure there's much I can say about this one, beyond that it's the work of Richard who used to run Chainsaw Cassettes in east London - which I somehow only realised just now when looking on Discogs - and very good it is too, cheaply recorded I would guess, but he achieved a very convincing sound with whatever it was he was doing. I really should have bought a few more things from his catalogue back when I had the chance, but never mind.

1 - Hate
2 - Wrongful Death Suits
3 - Sloburn
4 - Cold, Dead Fingers
5 - Strain
6 - Black & White
7 - Chrome DNA II
8 - 1,000 Ugly
9 - Fluorescent
10 - Comjunk
11 - Drop Circuit

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Saturday, 1 June 2019

Regular - Music 1980-1988 (1988) C90

Long term inmates will already have been exposed to the work and existence of John Jasper here, here, here and possibly also here - paragraph nine onwards if you want to cut to the chase. This was one of a number of tapes John ran off for me when I first met him, something to give me an idea of where he was coming from; and, as you will hear, he was coming from somewhere roughly equidistant between PIL's Metal Box and Adrian Sherwood's On-U label, but with enough of his own thing to oblige the rest of us to at least have to work at spotting the influences. John had a weird habit of occasionally mixing his own stuff up with that which had patently been recorded by other people - notably one thing he claimed some friend had sent to him which I almost immediately recognised as Keith LeBlanc's Major Malfunction album. The last time I saw him - late nineties, I think - he passed me a tape of his work with a few tracks sounding suspiciously like something off the Leftfield album. Anyway, I'm reasonably certain this one was all John, excepting that I played the bass on February '88 (the first thing we collaborated on), and the first two tracks of side two were from a Jah Wobble record, which I haven't included here for obvious reasons; and as for recorded live at the Hope & Anchor, sure, John, whatever you say...

Frankly, this guy was funny as fuck and an artistic leviathan where his music was concerned. Had he been able to resist weaving all those weird self-defeating webs of mystery and half truth around his efforts, we might now be buying the 180gsm vinyl reissues of a massive back catalogue rather than hearing it for the first time as a download of a tape that's been sat at the bottom of a cardboard box for the last couple of decades, but never mind. If it weren't for all the bewildering subterfuge, he probably wouldn't have been John.

1 - A Joke from the Neck
2 - Scratch
3 - Version Yellow I
4 - Version Yellow II
5 - Metal West
6 - Disco (Jerk Off)
7 - Three Cat Juggle
8 - Ground Under Sound
9 - Metro (with Colour)
10 - Shortwave Globetrot
11 - (no title)
12 - February '88
13 - Absence
14 - Into Thin Air
15 - Dry
16 - Collage
17 - Mind Sweeps Back
18 - Rubberneck
19 - A Joke from the Neck II

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Monday, 27 May 2019

Antonym - Statues in Ice (1992) C50

Can't even find this one on Discogs, so 1992 is a guess. I expect I still have the letter from Mr. Burnham reading Dear Loz, here is my tape of rare stuff but I can't be arsed to look to check the date. Also, he probably wouldn't have described it as rare stuff, because that's more like the sort of dumb shit I used to do: well, I've sold five copies of that last tape so now its time to issue a cassette of my rare recordings... Anthony had more sense than that, so this is a tape of leftovers, or something in that general direction, which admittedly may not sound too promising, but there's some nice stuff here. It may, if you're about the same age as I am, initially remind you of the straight and curly animation sequences they used to have on Rainbow - Bungle not Blackmore - but stick with it as it gets its hooks into you.
It was a bit difficult to tell quite where a couple of these tracks ended and others began, particularly with Warp I and Woven Glass, but hopefully I got it right.

1 - Warp I
2 - Woven Glass
3 - The Bonnicon
4 - Inherit the Earth?
5 - Pikadon
6 - Persistence
7 - Warp II
8 - Weft
9 - Kinetic Workhorse I
10 - Kinetic Workhorse II
11 - Primordial Cry
12 - Black Velvet Void
13 - Scarsnarl
14 - Fracturhythm


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Friday, 17 May 2019

Impulse 8 (1996) C30

Here's my final Impulse compilation. For some reason I don't have the magazine that came with this one, yet I have issue seven but no tape, so issue seven is included with the download for the sake of tying up a loose end. You should know most of these names, but for the record: Splintered were something to do with Richo Johnson of Grim Humour and Adverse Effect zines, and as such probably qualify as the best band ever to involve a bloke who writes a fanzine, possibly excepting Alternative TV. Discogs seems to think the Richard Johnson of Aphasia is a different person, but personally I'm sceptical. Even my wife's 93-year old Texan grandmother has a couple of tapes by Illusion of Safety, so there's no excuse for ignorance regarding the same. Cathedra was Mark who wrote Impulse (and as such is exempt from any statements about bands formed by blokes who write fanzines), later of Konstruktivists, and whose Codex Empire have just put out a double vinyl album about which I've heard only good things. Day of the Moon was in Evil Twin with Karl Blake, and Band of Pain was something to do with Steve Pittis of Dirter Promotions.
Had to apply an unusual amount of noise reduction to this one - the silences were filled with this sort of low-level digital susurrus suggesting a virtual rather than physical master copy, but I think it's come out sounding okay.

1 - Splintered - Smokescreen (Impulse mix)
2 -
Illusion of Safety - Altered Locations
3 -
Aphasia - Based on a Disturbed Glance (edit)
4 -
Cathedra - Relegatio
5 -
Day of the Moon - Night of Knives
6 -
Band of Pain - Fake Shit (Drone Mood)
7 -
Konstruktivists - Midnight Mass (short mix)

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Friday, 10 May 2019

Apostles - Live at the Academy 108 (1989) C90

Here's my last Apostles tape, which is a bit of a relief. Weirdly, I have no memory of having acquired this one, or listening to it up until about a week ago - not sure why. This fact seems additionally mysterious given that it may even be their best, or their best which isn't Second Dark Age if you prefer.

'But Loz,' I hear you cry, 'how can that be? The Apostles were notoriously ropey live, and this is surely a recording of some gig.'

Well, yes, but as Andy explains on the cover, it was recorded direct from the microphones and is therefore good quality because there's no audience sound - which I'm sure will make sense to our technically minded subscribers. I haven't read the rest of the cover because I've spent quite enough time squinting at microscopic type over the last month, but I expect there will be some account of how our man did such a good job playing the guitar whilst singing at the same time, something he used to have trouble with. Actually, he seems to be playing a couple of guitars at the same time on a few of these tracks, which must have taken some practice, and was surely a treat for everyone who attended this event which was definitely a genuine live gig with an audience and probably a bloke selling pies at the back.

My guess is that this was some sort of Apostles bowing out thing, hence all the old favourites - and definitive recordings too - plus covers of tracks by Chelsea, the Pop Group, and er... whatever that last track was. Certainly it seems like a precursor to Academy 23, not least with thee spellings which I've ignored because I'm a grown man; and Pagga in Pilrig was relocated to Pilton and became an Academy 23 standard.

If anyone doesn't get the Apostles, this is probably the one to listen to.

1 - We Are All Prostitutes
2 - High Rise Living
3 - Urban Kids
4 - After the Fact
5 - Pigs for Slaughter
6 - Mister Missed Her
7 - Kings Cross Etc.
8 - Thalidomide
9 - The Sword
10 - Daze of the Weak
11 - New Face in N16
12 - Pagga in Pilrig
13 - Mistreated
14 - Our Mother, the Earth
15 - The Hunt
16 - 5.975MHz
17 - The Visitors
18 - Fucking Queer
19 - A Case History
20 - Pig Violence
21 - Walking Away
22 - The Witness
23 - For You

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Monday, 6 May 2019

Mlehst - Occasional Stimulation / She Made Me a Sadist (1995) C60

Only now has it occurred to me that the name seems to be a phonetic spelling of the word molest. Anyway, I don't know a massive amount about this guy, although I met him once and found him very personable - according to my diary. I'm told he made a point of destroying his master tapes so as to preserve the preciousness of the artefacts, or something, so hopefully I'm not stepping on anyone's toes by sharing this. No track list with this one as it comprises one long piece of reassuringly expensive sounding noise per side, and was actually a reissue of a couple of C30s previously issued by labels other than Bandaged Hand. Needless to say I can't find mention of any of them on Discogs so I assume he was simply more prolific than anyone could keep track of.

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Friday, 26 April 2019

Apostles - Cartography (1987) C90

Cartography was consistently billed as an Apostles album, as distinct from a tape, although it doesn't appear to have been included amongst those reissued on the UNIT Bandcamp page, so er... whatever. The idea was that the tape came with a folder of artwork - all separate sheets rather than a booklet - and the art was part of the whole package and as integral as the music; so I suppose Cartography could also be seen as a dry run for Academy 23's Europe Awake! I'm not sure if this was the last Apostles thing, but it was pretty late and the experimentation seems to suggest them getting a bit weary of tried and tested formats, hence two long pieces of continuous music, each taking up a side of the tape. As you will hear, there didn't seem to be much point breaking them up into the individual tracks listed on the information sheet, so I haven't - excepting the final number at the close of side two which is clearly its own thing and has been edited as such. It isn't listed on the information sheet so I've assumed it's called Forbidden Love.

Side one is mostly just Dave noodling away, and is fairly proggy. It's a fairly understated piece as a whole presumably thanks to the absence of Andy, and prefigures the HAVE tapes Dave later gave away with issues of Harlequin, so it's actually pretty great. Side two is some performance art thing undertaken by the Demolition Company with Dave and Andy somehow involved. It's a live recording and a bit of a racket. I guess maybe you had to be there.

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Monday, 22 April 2019

Apostles - Will I Ever Be Free? (1985) C90

This probably wasn't the Apostles tape you were waiting for, but it's the one I'm posting. Sorry. I finally finished editing Fire in The Sky, deducing that my copy - bewilderingly recorded on a C180 and lasting three fucking hours - included side two twice, plus Visions of the End - the twenty-four minute industrial opera from the Strength Through Purity C60, which I also digitised just for the sake of checking it was the same version. I won't be sharing either publically because although they're otherwise decent tapes, both include material composed when Andy wasn't feeling very well, as he once put it, these being (for the record, seeing as the shitstorm is puzzlingly still pending regarding this material, and we might as well get it out of the way):

The Master Race - See, this was the first of these songs I actually heard, and it's very obviously taking the piss out of the bonehead community - kill your parents until they're dead, pogo on their fucking heads etc. etc. This was on Strength Through Purity which Andy gave me to put out on my own tape label, Do Easy, and with a big old swastika as the front cover. This made me feel massively uneasy about the undertaking but, given the sarcastic tone of The Master Race, I assumed it was simply Andy indulging in his characteristic leftie-baiting, or just trying to piss people off, or even testing me or something.

Rock Against Communism - Whilst I have no actual problem with the idea of presenting opposition to Communism, it probably depends on what you consider Communism to be, and if you consider Communism to be, for example, lesbian wholefood collectives and other things which annoy readers of the Daily Mail - notably socialism, then you can fuck off, quite frankly. I strongly suspect this one was named after the National Front's answer to Rock Against Racism, and I tell myself that this was Andy's sense of humour (a judgement I'm approximately qualified to make because I know the guy), more leftie-baiting, and an attempt to alienate fans of his own group (which has itself been a common theme over the years) even before we get onto the apparently Marxist, even Maoist tracks recorded by UNIT, Rock in Opposition etc., but even so, being as it's impossible to tell the difference between this song and the sort of shite once peddled by the likes of No Remorse (apart from being more tuneful), it isn't even an argument really worth having.

Stop the Rot - His nibs once told me that the title was originally a chant by a far right paper seller (probably National Front) he encountered in Brick Lane, I think it was - very obviously upper class, waving copies of his shitty rag around whilst trilling stop the rot! in the style of William Joyce. The thrust of Andy telling me this story was not how cool and awesome he thought the guy seemed, and so I've always assumed this one to be - as with the above - another horribly misjudged parody. The cover of Fire in the Sky contains all of the usual impassioned denouncements of racism, homophobia, and so on, but, you know...

Kill or Cure - Yeah, the homophobia - given that Andy is himself gay, and that only a complete fucking idiot could mistake Fucking Queer for anything homophobic, this one is a real dilly of a pickle tangled up with self-loathing and all manner of bipolar shit. I wouldn't even know where to start.

Too Much Confusion - Fire in the Sky's actual Skrewdriver cover version...

As I say, I've known Andy a long, long time, and I don't recall one single instance of him ever having cracked a racist joke, making a racist observation, or anything of the sort, and yet see above. All I can say in his defense is that he's a very complicated man too often let down by his own urge to piss people off, and regardless of the potential for any of these tracks to be no more than innocent parodies of something awful, I have no wish to be complicit in distributing them, so I won't be sharing either Fire in the Sky or Strength Through Purity. I ummed and ahhed over it, maybe figuring full-disclosure might be the best way to go, let people decide for themselves, free speech blah blah blah, but I've decided against it because I don't need the headache when I don't even like these shitty tracks (possibly excepting Master Race because it's funny), and there's already quite enough rightie toss in the world right now and I'd rather not add to it. If the term libtard or anything invoking political correctness as a pejorative crossed your thoughts whilst reading the above, please discontinue your existence. Thanks in advance.


This tape seems to come from the era during which the Apostles were getting quite popular, relatively speaking, and had taken to furnishing interested labels with what were essentially greatest hits collections, being unable to generate enough new material to give everyone their own original tape to release. Will I Ever Be Free? was the one that ended up on Trev Ward's label (and yet somehow I'm the bloke who gets the fucking swastika on the cover) and seems to be mostly material, or variations on material from the first couple of 7" EPs. Presumably superior quality versions of these tracks appear on the Apostles singles collection download which you should buy from the UNIT bandcamp page, but I figured I'd share this tape here because it seems to feature a couple of curiosities of mysterious origin which may not even be on the official download seeing as I don't know where they're from (Larry Peterson singing on Hello You Bastard for example) and because it doesn't seem to include any Jim Davidson covers, so far as I can tell...

Word of warning: the quality is a bit ropey, sounding something like a copy of a copy (nothing to do with me, I swear), but it sort of works as a record of its time. If, after reading the above, you're beginning to wonder what anyone ever saw in the Apostles, then give this a listen.

1 - After the Fact I
2 - After the Fact II
3 - After the Fact III
4 - The Curse
5 - Class War
6 - Proletarian Autonomy
7 - Hello Black Flag
8 - Alien Asian
9 - Skin Deep
10 - Blind Discrimination
11 - Kings Cross Etc.
12 - The Cripple's Radio Story
13 - 1985
14 - Pale Blue Eyes
15 - Hello You Bastard
16 - The Island
17 - Mob Violence
18 - Stumped
19 - The Innocent Bystander
20 - The Phoenix
21 - Mob Violence (part two)
22 - Swimming in the Sea of Life
23 - Libertarian Youth

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Monday, 15 April 2019

Impulse 6 (1996) C40

Still wading through the longest ever Apostles tape, I'm afraid, so here's another Impulse compilation in the meantime. This one features, amongst other things, a pretty great Muslimgauze track. The Fragment Collage is an assemblage of material from the label of the same name featuring Moisten Before Use, Erixma, and others - didn't seem to be much point in breaking it all up into individual snippets, so you'll just have to refer to the cover in order to work out what's what; or you could look at the mag, because one thing I finally found time to do was to scan all of my back issues of Impulse, and scans of Impulse 6 are included as a separate folder within this download. Keeping in mind that I'm inexplicably missing issue four, scans of the rest have now been added to the download folders of their respective tapes, which you can find in the index at the foot of this blog post. Impulse issue one, for which I never had the tape, has been added to the download for the Impulse 2 tape and I've even chucked in the issue with the Death in June stuff because if you really need to read Mr. Forbes amazing thoughts on pleasuring oneself over grainy photos of dead Nazi stormtroopers, then that's your tough titty.

1 - The Fragment Collage
2 -
Thieves of Impressions - Savennenland
3 -
Hex Minora - Embrace of Evil
4 -
Muslimgauze - Thief Severed Hand
5 -
M. Nomized - Untitled
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Monday, 8 April 2019

Impulse 4 (1992) C40

There would have been another Apostles tape this week, but the one I digitised was - so it turns out - copied onto a C180, amounting to three fucking hours on a single cassette, and most of that being extras that Andy stuck on there which aren't officially on the cassette, and hence aren't listed on the track list - so it's going to take me some time working out what the fuck is what with that one. I didn't even realise there had ever been such a thing as a C180 until this week.

While we're waiting, here's Impulse 4, which I apparently misfiled between Impulse 5 and Impulse 6 rather than Impulse 3 and Impulse 5 like some crazy ketamine fuelled anarchist mental case, hence my not having posted it before. As you will be aware, this was a cassette given away with Impulse mag, although I don't have the magazine, for some reason. Seems a bit weird my having mislaid this one seeing as I'm actually on it, but never mind.

Attrition you will surely know by reputation, and same with most of the others if you've regularly been following this blog. Michael Mantra, one of the two names with which I was not familiar, is some big cheese in American improv circles, or possibly was; and as for Sexus - even at the time their contributing seemed like a bit of a scoop being as they were famous and had been lumped in with that whole Romo thing which Melody Maker was desperately trying to get happening, and ended up releasing a single on ZTT. Shame it never really took off. Even if the hype was pure wank, the music pissed over all that other Thousand Shed Present toss which everyone except me and a select band of my fellow cool kids* were listening to.

*: This term is utilised with a certain quota of irony in mockery of anyone attempting to use it as a serious criticism, as has happened on occasion, because yes, we were soooo fucking cool hunched over a pile of envelopes and a stack of photocopies in our freezing bedsits in nowheresville - which is nice because being perceived as cool was obviously a big deal for us.

1 - Attrition - The Next Day (Revisited)
2 -
Another Headache - Go Slow
3 -
Antonym - Xchne Arcae
4 -
Ozone Bandits - Empty Lizard (Slight Return)
5 -
Sexus - How Can You Live Without Me?
6 -
Michael Mantra - Glistening Air
7 -
Family of Noise - Don't Look Back
8 -
Aerschot - Chuckle
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