So, when was "Party Fears One" released?
― Mark G, Thursday, 12 February 2009 12:39 (4 years ago) Permalink
i was about to revive this thread last night, weird.
― cutty, Thursday, 12 February 2009 12:40 (4 years ago) Permalink
i always thought it was "tell me easters adjourned"? was always one of my favourite billy lyrics that way
― rio (r1o natsume), Thursday, 12 February 2009 13:29 (4 years ago) Permalink
i think it is adjourned
― cutty, Thursday, 12 February 2009 13:31 (4 years ago) Permalink
i want some live associates. any top boots available on blogs or soulseek?
― Gerald McBoing-Boing, Friday, 20 March 2009 18:47 (4 years ago) Permalink
There is or was a page with a bunch of shows for downloading, I recall.
― Ned Raggett, Friday, 20 March 2009 18:57 (4 years ago) Permalink
Oh yeah, posted just upthread a bit:
thanks so much Mr. Nedyou just made my day
― turtles all the way down (Face of Wolf), Friday, 20 March 2009 21:21 (4 years ago) Permalink
Glad to help!
― Ned Raggett, Friday, 20 March 2009 21:22 (4 years ago) Permalink
Ned, with that posted link, I can finally forgive you for that YouTube vid about the cape. You are indeed a gentleman.
― Blancmange Is Playing At My House (King Boy Pato), Sunday, 22 March 2009 08:30 (4 years ago) Permalink
There's a new play on at Dundee Rep Theatre, "Balgay Hill", in June that is kind of Billy Mackenzie related. It's not purely autobiographical. I'm not going to explain it well, but here's the link: http://www.dundeereptheatre.co.uk/p2s22.html
Will be going along to see it, the Rep is usually good.
― MichaelJLambert, Sunday, 22 March 2009 12:47 (4 years ago) Permalink
One tries, KBP.
And I kept forgetting to mention Balgay Hill! The Associates list has been talking about it for a bit -- and someone on there just posted a link to this thread so hello all who are seeing it for the first time! (I have to apologize as upthread I say Blair Brown is male, which is obv not the case!)
― Ned Raggett, Sunday, 22 March 2009 14:04 (4 years ago) Permalink
After the first half of this thread talked exclusively about Sulk, I'm glad The Affectionate Punch got some love after it was reissued in 2005. It's my favorite of theirs. AMG said "Two years later -- a year after the genius run of bizarre singles collected on Fourth Drawer Down and the same year as the high-drama overdrive of Sulk -- Rankine and Mackenzie partially re-recorded and completely remixed this album to spectacularly layered and glossy effect." Too bad the reissue didn't include that version, it might have won over some of the Sulk fans.
― Fastnbulbous, Sunday, 22 March 2009 15:04 (4 years ago) Permalink
That version was already on CD for years, so it was quite exciting to get the original version back in print. I think it's like the Slapp Happy thing (Casablanca Moon/Acnalbasac Noom) some people prefer one, some the other, some like to pick from each!
― dan selzer, Sunday, 22 March 2009 18:22 (4 years ago) Permalink
Having fun on Dutch TV in 1982
― Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 1 April 2009 05:32 (4 years ago) Permalink
Another Dundee-centric event coming up: a screening of the documentary "The Glamour Chase", introduced by Alan Rankine. The page says it's still TBC, but if it's on it's on June 2nd. Probably not much use for many of you, I know.
― MichaelJLambert, Wednesday, 8 April 2009 20:54 (4 years ago) Permalink
tell me easter's on friday, and i'll bend my hips
― cutty, Wednesday, March 19, 2008 10:25 AM (1 year ago) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink
― cutty, Friday, 10 April 2009 14:42 (4 years ago) Permalink
― rio (r1o natsume), Friday, 10 April 2009 16:09 (4 years ago) Permalink
And to repeat myself in turn given the weekend:
"Tell me Easter's a draaaaaaaaaaaaaaaggg!"
― Ned Raggett, Friday, 10 April 2009 16:10 (4 years ago) Permalink
says "splint my hips" hmmm
― cutty, Friday, 10 April 2009 16:59 (4 years ago) Permalink
Ned, did you ever come around on Wild & Lonely? I enjoy the older CD I have. But esp. now that it's been remastered and reissued--and given how dramatically different Sulk sounded after its reissue (compare the old Popera master of "Party Fears Two" for a taste)--my guess is that this could be a pretty remarkable difference.
― Naive Teen Idol, Saturday, 11 April 2009 16:28 (4 years ago) Permalink
I haven't listened as much to the remaster as I could/should have but I do have it around, and while I still think it's a prisoner of its particular time and place there's a better album in there struggling to get out than I first thought. A couple of TV clips from the time helped to bring that home to me more.
― Ned Raggett, Saturday, 11 April 2009 17:08 (4 years ago) Permalink
Yeah -- listening to Wild and Lonely now, I feel like this record has aged very, very well. To begin with, the comparison to which this era of Billy is most regularly drawn--post-Avalon Bryan Ferry--is superficial at best and wrong at worst. Yes, it's "glossy" and "high tech" and both have marvelous voices -- but the similarities end there.
For one, there's much more weirdness going on here -- from the production touches (the varispeeded high keyboard melody of "Something's Got to Give") to the lyrics ("It all begins/With Santa Claus/And brilliant men/With brilliant flaws" is but one of the amazing couplets to be found throughout this).
And honestly, I think the production has dated quite well, really. There's this assumption that's been extrapolated from Ferry to every artist that became "slick" in the 1980's that this Xanadu-ification of studio technology naturally covered for a lack of ideas or inspiration.
That may be true for Ferry, Bowie and whoever else, but it just doesn't apply for Billy's post-Rankine work. Don't get me wrong: Sulk is desert island pick-worthy for me -- I love it as much as any record I own, probably. But in some ways, I think what Billy did from Perhaps-onward is riskier and bolder because he was pushing those limits wearing an MOR straitjacket. And while it's not "consistent," well...that was never Billy's strength anyway.
― Naive Teen Idol, Sunday, 12 April 2009 04:00 (4 years ago) Permalink
The full 40 minute edit of the documentary "The Glamour Chase" was given only it's second public airing at the DCA in Dundee tonight. It was originally made in 1999 for Grampian and STV. It's good, fairly zips through the life and times, I never saw the original 23 minute version when it was broadcast, but it must have battered through at a fair pace! Most of the detail is familiar from Tom Doyle's book of the same name, unsurprising as he was involved in the making of the documentary and the fact that the book itself was fairly exhaustive. There's talking-head contributions from the likes of Michael Dempsey, Max Hole, Chris Parry (a "Kiwi c-nt", according to Rankine...), Billy's father and sister, Boris Blank, Martin Fry, Glen Gregory, Marc Almond, Siouxie Sioux, Noko from Apollo440 and others. There's a few clips of the Ronnie Scotts performance in 1984 in a kind of jazz trio arrangement, not sure how widely available that has been but it looked great - the sound quality was good and clear, it would be great to have the audio of that.
Afterwards we got "Billy Sloan in Conversation With Alan Rankine", which was quite enjoyable. Sloan was knowledgeable and understated and not at all playing up to his reputation. Sloan basically asked him about his time in the band from beginning to end, his memories of Billy, that sort of thing. A few questions from the audience at one point but I couldn't think of anything to ask. On the subject of "William It Was Really Nothing", Rankine said that he doesn't know if anything ever happened between Billy and Morrissey, but if he knew Billy as well as he thought he did then he probably shagged Morrissey ragged... By the sound of it, they had fun at the time. He also mentioned that they got their rights back for recordings a month ago, I assume he meant "Fourth Drawer Down" and "Sulk" and the "Double Hipness" material which was previously licenced to V2, and that they'll probably be doing something with it. On the subject of watching Billy carry on as Associates after his departure, he did say that other than some of the songs on "Perhaps", he didn't really rate the post-"Sulk" output, and that it was clear by the "Wild and Lonely"-era videos that Billy's heart wasn't in it.
The Q+A was finished off with the playback of a recently made recording of the lost Associates song "The Twins of Gemini". Rankine said that they'd worked on it at the time, but never recorded it, finished the lyrics or properly performed it other than maybe accapella at parties. Apparently this version was only finished the night before, and features Steven Lindsay on vocals, Craig Armstrong on piano and Rankine on bass. Someone asked him later if it was getting a release, he said they'd maybe be doing some more work on it but that it was a possibility.
Got the chance to shake Rankine's hand on my way out, didn't really have much to say. He had a few signed, unplayed 12"s of "White Car in Germany" that he was handing out, got one of those.
― MichaelJLambert, Tuesday, 2 June 2009 22:14 (4 years ago) Permalink
There's a few clips of the Ronnie Scotts performance in 1984 in a kind of jazz trio arrangement, not sure how widely available that has been but it looked great - the sound quality was good and clear, it would be great to have the audio of that.
Both video and audio of the full show have circulated pretty widely at this point -- that blog link I put should have it.
Great report, glad you had a good time!
― Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 2 June 2009 22:17 (4 years ago) Permalink
Ned, I suspected that the Ronnie Scotts stuff was out there, will have a look for that link.
The "Balgay Hill" play starts its run next week at Dundee Rep, work permitting I'll try and check that out. Don't expect much insightful critique of it though!
― MichaelJLambert, Tuesday, 2 June 2009 22:47 (4 years ago) Permalink
Odd news but hey -- two late period rarities featuring Billy have surfaced on YouTube courtesy of some bunch called Binary Music.
"Put This Right":
The first one apparently appeared on a cassette a while back but this is a far cleaner version -- it might be a track he did with Balcony -- while the second is more of a mystery. An Associates listmember who provided the earlier info also got a hold of Steve Aungle, his last regular collaborator, and he said he remembers the lyric -- apparently it's a tribute to Ms. Galas! -- but not working on the song. He also figures that the date is wrong since Billy died in January 1997, so maybe this was 1996.
― Ned Raggett, Saturday, 14 November 2009 15:49 (3 years ago) Permalink
Billy's last regular collaborator Steve Aungle has started a blog which will be dedicated to a series of posts about his life and times with the good man.
― Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 20 January 2010 04:33 (3 years ago) Permalink
This looks pretty promising thanks for the heads up. I just never get bored of finding out more about Billy. There seems to be an endless list of people who have great stories about him.
I think it's probably time to read The Glamour Chase again.
― Kitchen Person, Wednesday, 20 January 2010 11:31 (3 years ago) Permalink
Really enjoying the blog. As much as I love the guy, he must have been a total nightmare to work with.
― The Man With the Magic Eardrums (Billy Dods), Tuesday, 9 February 2010 12:01 (3 years ago) Permalink
who couldn't love "party fears two"?
also "dogs in the wild".
― dog latin, Tuesday, 9 February 2010 12:13 (3 years ago) Permalink
I once read that the last 3 tracks on the second Radio One Sessions are, in fact, identical to the studio versions and not from the Phil Kennedy show as indicated. Can anyone confirm or deny? And if it's true, are the proper session versions floating around in the interwebs?
― Gerald McBoing-Boing, Sunday, 21 February 2010 02:49 (3 years ago) Permalink
I'm looking for a few alternate version of tracks (as listed in a nice discography I've found). Can anyone help me out?
Straw Towels 5.24 (full length)39, Lyon Street: Kites 4.46 (full length 12" version)A Girl Named Property 5.25 (full length 12" version)Q Quarters (original demo version) 5.04
― Gerald McBoing-Boing, Sunday, 8 August 2010 15:49 (2 years ago) Permalink
Hmm, you should be able to find a clutch of them here:
― Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 10 August 2010 02:34 (2 years ago) Permalink
Thus, for instance:
On a more mundane note… and just before we all get over-excited… the version of “A Girl Named Property” on the original vinyl of “Fourth Drawer Down” (which claims to be 5.25 on the Sit 2 record label) is exactly the same length as the version which appears on the V2 re-issue (which comes in at 4.56). It is a 1981 labelling error so we can all calm down.
― Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 10 August 2010 02:35 (2 years ago) Permalink
That site is a godsend for obsessives - thanks!! Finally, the TRUE version of "Club Country"!
― Gerald McBoing-Boing, Tuesday, 10 August 2010 13:16 (2 years ago) Permalink
It is pretty great -- I'd had a slew of these songs already (IIRC Sid's on the Associates list or just the general source of a lot of things over the years) but by ripping so many them at a lot higher quality than before = A+ approach.
And don't know if you noticed but the 39 Lyon Street "Kites" 12" version went up -- unless you were the one who prompted him to do that in the first place!
Enjoying a slew of live recordings today -- hearing "No" from a 1980 Marquee show makes for quite a different beast than it turned out to be, even with the lyrics pretty much unchanged.
― Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 18 August 2010 20:17 (2 years ago) Permalink
i want to read more of this thread but listening to the group for the first time -- the album "fourth drawer down"
woah these guys are something...
i think i love it?
― are you ready for a thing called prog? (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 15 August 2011 17:54 (1 year ago) Permalink
A very good start there. And there's much more to discover.
― Ned Raggett, Monday, 15 August 2011 17:58 (1 year ago) Permalink
this is intriguing, they don't really fit nicely into any sort of post-punk/new wave "box"...like too uh fancy to be in with the real post-punkers (elements remind me of ABC or stuff like that) but way too weird and arty to be New Pop or whatever
aside from i guess a vague roxy music vibe but even that's not quite right
― are you ready for a thing called prog? (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 15 August 2011 18:07 (1 year ago) Permalink
You don't have the full story. The first LP, The Affectionate Punch, is more conventionally post-punk. It's a great album and it's arty and weird and baroque, but it sounds like a BAND and makes sense. The following album Sulk is more clearly new wave/new pop, though darker and gloomier. Fourth Drawer Down compiles a bunch of singles that came out inbetween. They're more experimental than either album, and I think more electronic. Not too far off from Sulk though.
But by the time of Sulk and them having "hits" with those singles, they were definitely grouped with new pop. Funny though if you compare the UK and US versions of Sulk, as the US version has the 18 Carrot Love Affair Single on instead of some of the darker stuff.
― dan selzer, Monday, 15 August 2011 18:12 (1 year ago) Permalink
Oh, funny, I was just thinking of reviving this wonderful thread. Welcome to the land of The Associates! Some of us have been here from the start, others wandered in blindly over the years but know this - no one leaves. And my appreciation of the sheer uniqueness (and overused word when it comes to music but it really applies here) just deepens as time goes on. I was just listening to "Double Hipness" yesterday and shaking my head, both at what's there and what could have been had the reunion continued full-on.
― Gerald McBoing-Boing, Monday, 15 August 2011 20:40 (1 year ago) Permalink
yeah def very interested now, esp to check out stuff dan just posted about, i guess i'm kinda coming in at the end of the band it sounds like
― are you ready for a thing called prog? (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 15 August 2011 20:47 (1 year ago) Permalink
Not at all -- very early on! The bandname essentially petered out much later in Mackenzie's career when he finally decided to let it go in favor of trading under his own name; the key partnership with Rankine did dissolve only after a few years together, though, so in terms of that you can say Fourth Drawer was essentially square in the middle.
― Ned Raggett, Monday, 15 August 2011 21:01 (1 year ago) Permalink
No, you're near the middle of the beginning! After Sulk Alan Rankine left and Billy kept on for years with different producers and not as good results. Some people love that stuff, I certainly think there are some gems in there, but I definitely prefer the Rankine era.
ie what ned said
― dan selzer, Monday, 15 August 2011 21:03 (1 year ago) Permalink
There is so much space for discovery in their songs and albums. They are all like majestic alien halls you can wander down forever. I have been on an Associates kick for months and it'll keep going because their songs are so expansive. I still haven't listened to any of the post-Rakine stuff.
― Abbott, Tuesday, 16 August 2011 02:37 (1 year ago) Permalink
Abbott, that is one of the best descriptions of them I've ever read. :-)
― Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 16 August 2011 03:10 (1 year ago) Permalink
why have I not posted itt? jeeez
― dayo, Tuesday, 16 August 2011 03:16 (1 year ago) Permalink
Thought I ought to mention that Tom Doyle's excellent Billy MacKenzie biog The Glamour Chase is due for reissue at the beginning of next month: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Glamour-Chase-Tom-Doyle/dp/1846972094/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1313487770&sr=8-1
― Here he is with the classic "Poème Électronique." Good track (Marcello Carlin), Tuesday, 16 August 2011 09:43 (1 year ago) Permalink
Very cool indeed (and Bjork over Bono as the forward writer any day so hurrah for that; is that the only revision, though?).
― Ned Raggett, Tuesday, 16 August 2011 12:36 (1 year ago) Permalink