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CD REVIEWS - 12/06

Airport 81 - "Put Your Squares Together" CD 13/47:26
Hard to believe that there are actual instruments (guitar, drums, etc.) among the electro-noises here. Imagine if the audio on your old Atari 2600 and Commodore 64 games were programmed by ADD-afflicted indie folk-cum-closet-Kraftwerk disciples and you'll have something like this. Pretty fun, and makes me wonder what they'd do in a live setting. David
@ www.breathingroomrecords.com

Pale Sunday - "Summertime" CD 13/27:46
Male-voxed pop outfit delivering their first full-lengther straight outta Sao Paulo, Brazil (which shows how global this Indie Pop thang has become). Not bad, but origins aside it doesn't stand out of the indiepop crowd (when you listen to a record three times and still have problems remembering it afterwards, that's probably not a good sign). Still, if you've been following this label up to now (and I know some of you do) this won't give you reason to quit. David
@ www.indiepages.com/matinee

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Edda Dell'orso - "The Incredible Voice of..." CD 17/74:59
Ms. Dell'orso was Ennio Morricone's secret weapon (not that he was the only one who used her), with her (mostly) wordless vocalizing adding that perfect angelic (and/or otherworldly) touch to the proceedings. Granted most of the material provided here (mostly from the late 60s/early 70s) leans more towards EZ soundtrack fare, but it's decidedly more evocative than sleep-inducing (getting the balance right is nowhere near as easy as it looks). Based on this evidence she could provide anything from the aforementioned angelic vocalizing to nearly-orgasmic-but-still-eerie moans, effectively complementing whatever mood the composer was trying to set at the time. David
@ www.cherryred.co.uk

Perez Prado - "Primal" CD 26/79:46
1939-'43 recordings from a younger, wilder Prado (hence the title); that this actually makes his later (e.g. 50s) stuff sound tame should tell you all you need to know. The kind of music that made uptight gringos recoil in fear while their kids tore it up on the dancefloors (sounds familiar doesn't it?). If you think of Shikira whenever you hear the term "Latin music", you really (and I mean REALLY) need to pick this up. David
@ www.cherryred.co.uk

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For Against - "December" CD 9/36:21
More quality atmo-rock (originally issued in 1988) on this second full-lengther from this Lincoln (then) trio. If not quite up there with their debut (so closeń) it has more than enough good tunes (especially the likes of "Sabres" and "The Last Laugh") to satisfy (just don't expect sentiments of the "Don't Worry Be Happy" variety in the lyrics). If only there were some bonus tracks tacked on. David
@ www.words-on-music.com

Eater - "Live at Barbarellas 1977" CD 14/43:01
Yep it's Eater caught live on August 30, 1977 at Barbarella's, with a reading from "The Andy Blade Chronicles" book and a "Pojmasta Remix" of "Got No Brains" (i.e. Eater gone agro-techno) thrown in for good measure. The live portion (which is what you'd be picking this up for) is pretty much what you'd expect: a pretty raw recording soundwise but still listenable, with the energy of both band and times coming through. Pretty much status quo as far as most live albums go: fans will definitely enjoy, newcomers will want to try out the classic UK punk studio recordings first. David
@ www.cherryred.co.uk

Nausea - "Punk Terrorist Anthology: Volume 2 '85-'88" CD 30/72:59
Ah, it seems like only yesterday that this lot was still roaming our fair land and inspiring anarcho-punk-crustcore scenes nationwide. This particular release compiles various live, demo, and unreleased tracks (including Omega Tribe, Subhumans, and Business covers). It's a bit on the rawer side as a result (though we're not talking mono-mania here; AT did a good job of cleaning up the sound without scrubbing out the grit) but despite (or because of) that the power and fury of this lot still shine through. Newcomers should still check out Vol. 1 (which features the "main" releases) but otherwise this is definitely worth checking out. David
@ www.alternativetentacles.com

Mike & the Ravens - "Nevermore: Plattsburg, 62 and Beyond" 2XCD 53/118:03
A retrospective of this (initially) garage outfit, from '62 to '04. With tracks arranged in chronological order, you can almost trace the history of the American Garage Band here, from the pre-Beatles days (Crickets, Duane Eddy, surf, etc.) to ever-increasing traces of psych to mellower countryish rock (70s), and beyond (afterwards). The sound quality can get very lo-fi at times, but for the most part it's listenable. Needless to say most of the primo material is on the first disc. The period soundbites ("Duck & Cover", Chicago Mayor's speech about their cops "preserve(ing) disorder", etc.) are a nice touch as well. David
@ www.dionysusrecords.com

Swell Maps - "Wastrels and Whippersnappers" CD 23/45:32
A compiling of the band's earliest home recordings (with all but four apparently previously unreleased) ranging from avant-garage to downright (if noisy) punk rock. Not content to work within any frameworks, fashionable or otherwise, this lot (arguably behind only the Desperate Bicycles and New Hormones-era Buzzcocks) helped jumpstart the DIY movement (you know, the folks who released records/tapes by themselves or with the help of friends instead of ceding Complete Control to CBS, et al). Not to mention that you can hear the seeds (musically and otherwise) of what became the UK tape underground of the early 80s. Not the ideal entry point for newcomers, but folks previously familiar with their oeuvre will appreciate the rough gems contained within. David
@ www.overgroundrecords.co.uk/

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