Sunday, November 05, 2017


I think I’ve talked about these guys before, but I’m still spending too much time wondering why some obscure UK bands get comprehensive remastered reissue campaigns, while others are left in the dust. You know, like Catherine Wheel.

There seems to be no real solidified conventional wisdom on when these guys were at their peak, so I’ll make the decision.  Their whole damn career was pretty good, but the keyboard-heavy mid and late period albums needed more guitar.  Losing Deebank hurt their sound.  Skip the first single (“Index”), but then hop on board for all of the early singles and the first wave of albums, especially the first two.  If you’re looking to dip your toes in, go with THE SPLENDOUR OF FEAR and CRUMBLING THE ANTISEPTIC BEAUTY and then add the compilation GOLD MINE TRASH (my own introduction to the band, thanks to a hipster I knew in high school – he had the cassette version, with the handful of bonus instrumental tracks).  After that, it’s your move.  GOLD MINE includes “Primitive Painters”, which will always be the band’s crowning glory. It all came together there.

This was a band custom-made for trolling through indie and import record stores in the mid 80s, since I don’t recall most of it ever getting an American release.  Of course, you can buy it all of MP3s these days, but I’m not sure if it’s been remastered.  A box set would’ve been the way to go, but what’re you gonna do?

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