Cabaret Voltaire : Classic Or Dud/Search and Destroy

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Sheffield's first proto-tech-niks don't seem to get much attention these days, so what says ILM - C or D?

My favourite Cabs albums would have to be Mix Up/Voice of America/Red Mecca, with 2 X 45 and Microphonies close behind. Also Nag, Nag, Nag (of course) and Sensoria singles. I'd destroy Johnny YesNo, and from memory, although I haven't heard it in 15 years, The Crackdown was very poor too.

Were the early Cabs an influence on later dance and electronica? Over to you.

Dr. C, Monday, 4 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

shit, it was all over by their 1st studio album. their "futuristic" sounds + horribly dated already by the late '80s ......if they were a influence on later this or that, it must've been on the crappiest stuff.
(have i been harsh enough? if i'd heard them more recently i'd prob'ly be more so i reckon)

duane zarakov, Monday, 4 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Undoubtedly classic, but as Duane contends: didn't age well. I got into the Cabs around Micro-phonies, and it was undoubtedly very forward-looking music at the time, at least for something on a major label (here in Canada it was Virgin, which meant fairly wide distribution, even sometimes to the sticks). At the time I also really loved The Covenant, the Sword, and the Arm of the Lord, as it seemed to really blend sampling, dancebeats, electro-funk and melody together into one really nifty package (I was in my mid-teens and a lot less discriminating, perhaps).

I wouldn't destroy The Crackdown, but it was quite a disappointment at the time. Going back to the earlier "industrial" records was actually far more interesting, though I could really only take them in small doses. "Yashar" was great. Red Mecca and Three Mantras were spooky and I didn't really understand them, but I liked them all the same. For some reason my favourite early cabs bit was their cover of "No Escape" on mix-up, but that's due to my need at the time for some sort of melody to really latch onto a song, and probably the same reason I glommed onto "Hamburger Lady" by Throbbing Gristle...another project that hasn't really aged well.

To state that this stuff was unimportant, however, is missing the mark. Both Gristle and the Cabs pushed the boundaries of sound, and Cabaret Voltaire, in particular, brought in a lot of outside influences and tonalities that made it more interesting to my ears: dub, Eastern tonalities and sounds, funk. And by the time the Cabs hit their Virgin years and went electronic, they laid the foundation for a new generation of techno artists who wanted to go past the very minimalist Kraftwerk influence into something a bit more complicated, yet melodic. That's why it was such a disappointment when the Cabs tapered off through Code and Groovy, Laidback and Nasty, sounding more and more like the people they'd influenced. The later period stuff (notably the Conversation) was a bit of a renaissance, but also a bit too little too late.

In the end, my classic period is their Some Bizarre/Virgin years, which probably are their more listenable to modern ears, while still having some semblance of influence. Props to the earlier material, though.

Sean Carruthers, Monday, 4 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Maybe they haven't aged well (I disagree on that point), but by all accounts Autechre live these days seek to replicate that total overload of sound, so there's an influence lingering somewhere.

Ned Raggett, Monday, 4 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Perhaps "didn't age well" is overstating it. More like "is fairly dated": you can place a lot of those synth sounds from the early years to within a year or so if you try hard, so it's not exactly timeless material. Not that it necessarily has to be.

Sean Carruthers, Monday, 4 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

four years pass...
red mecca and three mantras: does anyone really need anything else by them? (I have mix up and hai as well).

kyle (akmonday), Tuesday, 4 April 2006 20:05 (fourteen years ago) link

Live at the Lyceum, 1981

neil tacus (tacit), Tuesday, 4 April 2006 20:09 (fourteen years ago) link

yes, everyone needs much more by them. Starting with Living Legends and the Crackdown. Then 2X45 and Voice of America. Then a bunch more.

Dan Selzer (Dan Selzer), Tuesday, 4 April 2006 20:27 (fourteen years ago) link

the crackdown: I never heard it. I read the AMG review which led me to believe it was good, then scanned through a bunch of threads here where everyone hated on it. I kept looking for your comments on it, Dan, since it sounded like something you'd be advocating.

kyle (akmonday), Tuesday, 4 April 2006 20:35 (fourteen years ago) link

some people just love the cabs...some people like their industrial/noisy stuff because they're into industrial/noisy stuff and some people like their electro-funk because they like electro-funk and some people like their synth-punk because...etc etc. I like what those guys do and no matter what genre they work with, it's always clearly Cabaret Voltaire to me (or this member of that...I'm not so quick to give all credit to Richard Kirk when Mallinder's solo releases on Fetish sound so amazing). The Crackdown has definate electro-funk elements but is still a pretty dark and interesting album, in a way that The Arm of the Lord and Microphonies, which are more popular albums, aren't always. I love selections from all of these, but think The Crackdown sounds more interesting then it's follow up records. Though on the hits, the songwriting on Arm of the Lord and MIcrophonies is of a higher quality probably. But it's all good.

Dan Selzer (Dan Selzer), Tuesday, 4 April 2006 20:47 (fourteen years ago) link

I'm in Dan's camp on this one. Kinda surprised that this thread is so small, after five years even. Living Legends is really really great and I like everything up until maybe Code. FWIW I prefer Crackdown to Microphonies.

sleeve (sleeve), Wednesday, 5 April 2006 05:05 (fourteen years ago) link

Just been reading an in depth history of the Sheffield scene in the late 70s and early 80s and am ripe for picking up some stuff by the cabs.

leigh (leigh), Wednesday, 5 April 2006 08:14 (fourteen years ago) link

crackdown is full of classics .. the dark brooding atmosphere, cut through with definite stabs of humour, 'why kill time when you can kill yourself' - pure perfection.

i much prefer Crackdown over The Arm .. against Microphonies i aint so sure, but for me it was all about the 3 Virgin albums (and Code to a certain degree) as all are still very worthy of love.

why they never reissued Drinking Gasoline in a standalone package i have no idea (do you know Dan?).. i realise that the tracks are available elsewhere (extras on Micorphones cd issue etc), but the artwork was excellent.

the day i traded in that double 12" was the day i officially lost my fucking marbles.

mark e (mark e), Wednesday, 5 April 2006 08:26 (fourteen years ago) link

I love Drinking Gasoline, I also love the Drain Train. Those releases are kind of repetitive to the extreme, and I think got reviewed poorly in the context of "songcraft" or whatever, but in the context of long, repetitive, groovy as fuck avant-electro-funk releases, you could do a lot worse.

Richard Kirk's third solo album, Black Jesus Voice is in the same mode...brutal electro-funk. Ugly Spirit which came out around the same time is a more experimental, less funky version.

I've never heard Disposable Half-Truths and never got that into Time High Fiction, which came out around the same time as the Crackdown, or at least has similar art. I need to listen to that again.

But I love Sweet Exorcist, Virtual State, the Sandoz stuff, etc as well.

Dan Selzer (Dan Selzer), Wednesday, 5 April 2006 14:30 (fourteen years ago) link

one year passes...

"Three Mantras" is really great, bit hard to find tho. Puts their early stuff in a v nice context, kinda a key to how they got here from there

President Evil, Thursday, 31 May 2007 10:45 (thirteen years ago) link

They are crazily dated, but I'm not sure "timeless appeal" was a goal of theirs, and a) people're still listening, b) they were pretty clearly tied to their times, politically most obv, they have SOUNDED like they were trying to be futuristic but maybe that was just context? They sound awfully like they just wanted to be an acknowledgement of various underappreciated strains of music etc to me right now

President Evil, Thursday, 31 May 2007 10:48 (thirteen years ago) link

Oh I think they were trying to be futuristic, sure. And I think they succeeded in the sense that they were innovators. That doesn't mean they didn't do some stuff that sounds dated now.

BTW, this must be the only Cabs thread I have not yet posted on.

Bimble, Thursday, 31 May 2007 13:39 (thirteen years ago) link

They sound awfully like they just wanted to be an acknowledgement of various underappreciated strains of music etc

What does this mean?

Tom D., Thursday, 31 May 2007 13:40 (thirteen years ago) link

the fools game/eddie's out 12" was totally their peak

J0hn D., Thursday, 31 May 2007 13:46 (thirteen years ago) link

I can't remember that one, I used to have all their stuff, what was the cover?

Tom D., Thursday, 31 May 2007 13:48 (thirteen years ago) link

It was after 2 x 45 but before they signed to Some Bizarre, which was when the whole sound changed radically (audible vox/lyrics - we hardcores blamed Stevo at the time). It had a black and white cover with the words "FOOLS GAME" in spray paint. I note from a GIS that it's actually "Fools Game/Gut Level" but I think one of the two was subtitled "Eddie's Out Pt. 2" or soemthing.

J0hn D., Thursday, 31 May 2007 13:51 (thirteen years ago) link

that goddamn record changed my life I tell you wot

J0hn D., Thursday, 31 May 2007 13:51 (thirteen years ago) link

Yeah, I remember the cover but I don't remember the rekkid!

Tom D., Thursday, 31 May 2007 13:56 (thirteen years ago) link

Yeah that was one of the few things by them I was seriously underwhelmed by when I bought it.

Bimble, Thursday, 31 May 2007 14:00 (thirteen years ago) link

"Sensoria" rules. I need to hear much much more.

Curt1s Stephens, Thursday, 31 May 2007 14:01 (thirteen years ago) link

to me that's kinda the end of the band - I don't like Crackdown, think Sensoria is OK and after that they're behind the times instead of ahead of them - where there was only really them doing stuff like 2x45 or the Fools Game 12", there were plenty of bands doing slightly "out" dance music, and doing it much better

J0hn D., Thursday, 31 May 2007 14:05 (thirteen years ago) link


Tom D., Thursday, 31 May 2007 14:08 (thirteen years ago) link

Fool's Game was on Crepuscule, right? It's on the Crepuscule Tracks compilations.

Anyway, there's some dated stuff, but mostly I'd say timeless, I can pick out tracks from most of their periods and suggest that they'd be impossible to date.

I do like them into the 80s but at some point Richard Kirk was doing better stuff solo, from the 80s electro solo records to Sweet Exorcist and Sandoz. By 90 or whatever the Cabs may have been slipping through the cracks, but Kirk was still an innovative force in underground electronic and dance music.

dan selzer, Thursday, 31 May 2007 16:20 (thirteen years ago) link

They were futuristic but also retro....some of those early Rough Trade acts sound like they're from 1,000 years ago, but were coming out at the same time as some glossy stuff...they were using broken drum machines and distorted farfisas when others were already using fairlights. I don't see how that can date them to that time. If anything, it makes their music sound more archaic then it really is, and thus, harder to place.

dan selzer, Thursday, 31 May 2007 16:30 (thirteen years ago) link

they were using broken drum machines and distorted farfisas when others were already using fairlights

I imagine that's all they could afford at the time!

Tom D., Thursday, 31 May 2007 16:34 (thirteen years ago) link

They covered the Seeds didn't they? The garage and psychedelic sound is as important to the early music as clean electronic stuff. They did something very fresh with synths outside the usual machine-music expectation of what 'futuristic' sounds like. The Fall also did a similar mirror-image psychedelia thing.

Alex xy, Thursday, 31 May 2007 16:53 (thirteen years ago) link

they were using broken drum machines and distorted farfisas when others were already using fairlights. I don't see how that can date them to that time.

a friend of mine gave me a tape with some unlabeled tracks, one of them being cab voltaire's "on every other street". it was pretty easy to peg as late 70s/early 80s british postpunk.


I mean that kinda shit only came from one time and place.

sometimes I think timeless is just shorthand for "I really really like this band."

Edward III, Thursday, 31 May 2007 17:20 (thirteen years ago) link

I don't know...they were doing those sounds since 75, they defined many aspects of that. When I heard that period Cabs I hear the BBC radiophonic stuff, krautrock, garage rock and other signifiers.

dan selzer, Thursday, 31 May 2007 18:14 (thirteen years ago) link

they were doing those sounds since 75, they defined many aspects of that.

so if they epitomized a sound that became associated with a certain time and place, wouldn't that make them sound dated?

Edward III, Thursday, 31 May 2007 20:32 (thirteen years ago) link

Dated, schmated, their use of degraded and found recordings has lasted far better than than squeeky-clean 80s synth-poppery that gets so much love here IMHO.

Soukesian, Thursday, 31 May 2007 21:00 (thirteen years ago) link

Of their post Crackdown records, Code is rather good.

moley, Thursday, 31 May 2007 22:40 (thirteen years ago) link

so if they epitomized a sound that became associated with a certain time and place, wouldn't that make them sound dated?

only if that sound makes you cringe in it's inability to sound fresh at any other time.

dan selzer, Friday, 1 June 2007 03:30 (thirteen years ago) link

eight months pass...

So is the _Listen Up_ odds and sods comp "essential" as Trouser Press says or more of a mixed bag like Allmusic indicates? I'm much more a fan of the poppier Virgin period.

Mr. Odd, Monday, 25 February 2008 01:44 (twelve years ago) link

god i love this band

latebloomer, Monday, 25 February 2008 01:49 (twelve years ago) link

what's the consensus on HAI? i like that album, played a track from it early on in my dj set last night.

htshell, Monday, 25 February 2008 03:30 (twelve years ago) link

Mr. Odd, if you like Crackdown and Microphonies you will surely love Listen Up. It has resisted being sold out of my CD collection for 15 years now. Lots of previously unreleased or video-only tracks as well.

sleeve, Monday, 25 February 2008 05:31 (twelve years ago) link

Crackdown's probably their best... it's like they're the masters of dark, weird funky electronic dance. I guess it sounds dated if you were old enough to have memories from the early 80s.

burt_stanton, Monday, 25 February 2008 07:23 (twelve years ago) link

two months pass...

They are one of my fave bands/duos/artists in the history of the entire world. Please talk to me about them.

Oh never mind: I will construct a POX of them that will help me and probably most anyone else who would bother reading about how Bimble loves Cabaret Voltaire now and forever until the end of time. They make me so happy. I don't even want to get started on the Crackdown album right now.

I fucking love Cabaret Voltaire okay and I have the BBC Sessions 84-86 now so the heavens love me.

I am currently listening to "You Like To Torment Me" (Long Session)

These guys were the fucking shit and I don't care what your tastes are. If you don't like Cabaret Voltaire, then I hope you like some other fave band of mine, because we've got basic problems already.

Bimble Is Still More Goth Than You, Saturday, 3 May 2008 04:16 (twelve years ago) link

I'm still baffled that they don't get more respect. 'Live YMCA' is a particular favorite - one of the most brilliantly screwed-up recordings ever, constantly teetering on the edge of falling apart. And there are quite a few other singles by other bands that I like as much as 'Nag, Nag, Nag', but I really can't think of any that I actually like more.

Soukesian, Saturday, 3 May 2008 16:27 (twelve years ago) link

I am shocked that Bimble likes this band from the 80s

J0hn D., Saturday, 3 May 2008 16:43 (twelve years ago) link


Yes I just got Live YMCA recently, actually. Only played it once so far. I'm going to put it on again as soon as I finish listening to John Cale's cover of LCD Sounsystem's "All My Friends" which seems to me came out nearly exactly a year ago. I'm sure it was. May of '07

Also was going to revive a Velvets thread very soon.

Bimble Is Still More Goth Than You, Saturday, 3 May 2008 17:04 (twelve years ago) link

And yes I'm afraid I remain woefully ignorant of the Mountain Goats, Mr. John D. Though I recall hearing some good things from whatever was the first 4AD release.

I should probably check out that Heretic Pride.

Bimble Is Still More Goth Than You, Saturday, 3 May 2008 17:16 (twelve years ago) link

Velvets count as 80s because nobody liked them in the 70s LOL

as I say upthread, possibly in some other alias, Cabaret Voltaire was one of my favorite bands. I do think they've aged badly - a lot of their stuff sounds good if you liked it at the time, but if you play it for people who haven't heard it, it's kind of like trying to explain what was ever good about cassettes. You know? I still think the Fools Game/Gut Level 12" is their peak - hits the spot just right. A lot of the other stuff sounds kinda proof-of-concept to me now, which makes me sad to say - I mean, when they were around, my friends and I thought pretty highly of ourselves for "appreciating" the Cabs.

J0hn D., Saturday, 3 May 2008 18:15 (twelve years ago) link

Oh no I disagree! The Fools Game 12" I sold! Sorry! :(

Anyway look, right now I am not really believing that there is a live version of "On Every Other Street" on this YMCA 1979 thing, because I am due for an orgasm whenever that song comes on. Holy hell.

They were the sythesizer ANTI-JAMES BROWN man. They were the dirty funk (gunk) on the sole of your shoes that you were too embarrassed to wipe away.

There may be some truth in what you say about trying to explain it to people who haven't heard it, though.

NAG NAG NAG!!!!!!!

Bimble Is Still More Goth Than You, Saturday, 3 May 2008 18:30 (twelve years ago) link

xpost- I dunno, I'm only 24 and Cabaret Voltaire (at least the early stuff. I haven't heard anything past Red Mecca) sounds GREAT to my ears. Sorta like Chrome in that they sound like music played by really shitty robots, like if you'd buried an early prototype of Kraftwerk in toxic sludge, then accidentally uncovered them two hundred years later and OH SHIT THEY'RE STILL ALIVE WHAT AN UNSPEAKABLY HORRIBLE EXISTENCE

BigLurks, Saturday, 3 May 2008 18:33 (twelve years ago) link

yeah ultimately dance CV > dance SPK, but man do I love "Breathless"

dense macabre (DJP), Monday, 7 November 2011 21:23 (nine years ago) link

But Slogun > Nag Nag Nag

Having said that though…

Franz Kappa (S-), Monday, 7 November 2011 21:31 (nine years ago) link

Fair play. I'd like to listen to all of the Attic Tapes box set in a flotation tank.

Conan The Asshander (Doran), Monday, 7 November 2011 21:38 (nine years ago) link

When I went to listen to Chris Watson's massive installation in the Victorian palm house at Kew Gardens last year, it was so impressive I ended up staying there all day to listen to it as many times as I could. It's quite a famous greenhouse and I think it features in the 'Caterpillar' video by The Cure. He recorded 15 minutes at sunset and 15 minutes at sunrise of sound in a section of tropical rainforest.

If I understood the concept correctly he used 80 microphones to record the sound and then played it back through 80 speakers which were placed all around the palm house on every level, meaning you could walk through the field recording as it were. For example if you were walking along the gantries at the top of the Palm House you'd hear more bird noise than you would below where there would be more insect noise.

And on the last playback of the day I saw Watson sat under a palm and I was going to go over and say hello but he was with a clearly delighted lady companion so I just threw the horns at him instead. Discretely of course.

Conan The Asshander (Doran), Monday, 7 November 2011 22:06 (nine years ago) link

No mention of 'Voice of America', the Cabs first LP?

No! Mix-up is the first LP.

unlistenable in philly (underrated aerosmith bootlegs I have owned), Monday, 7 November 2011 22:53 (nine years ago) link

btw my single trip to Kew Gardens was a wonderful day for me, a Watson sound installation in the palm house sounds just sublime.

unlistenable in philly (underrated aerosmith bootlegs I have owned), Monday, 7 November 2011 22:54 (nine years ago) link

never heard fools game before.

love it.

as this is the era of CV i love, i really regret not getting the conform to deform boxset now.

mark e, Tuesday, 8 November 2011 08:13 (nine years ago) link

No mention of 'Voice of America', the Cabs first LP?

No! Mix-up is the first LP.

And "Voice of America" is actually their 3rd LP! Arguably their 4th if "Three Mantras" is considered an album.

R. Stornoway (Tom D.), Friday, 11 November 2011 17:14 (nine years ago) link

I consider "Three Mantras" an EP. A really long one, in the style of the day! But still an EP.

unlistenable in philly (underrated aerosmith bootlegs I have owned), Friday, 11 November 2011 17:30 (nine years ago) link

Love aero's story upthread, sort of reminds me of the Alfred Molina scene in Boogie Nights, wonder how that would play with 'Gut Level' replacing 'Sister Christian'.

The multi-talented F.R. David (Billy Dods), Friday, 11 November 2011 17:39 (nine years ago) link

two months pass...

What's the latest on the reissues? I just realized it's my man Bill Nelson playing guitar on half the tracks on "Code" and in yhe video for "Here To Go". I love discovering new things about albums I've had for decades. I just gave it a spin and it's better than I remember, though I love it's predecessor much more.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Sunday, 22 January 2012 19:04 (eight years ago) link

two years pass...

How has no one mentioned Mal's new band, Wrangler, with Benge (whose work with John Foxx as the Maths is fantastic). Their new album is one of the best new releases of the year, a great melding of Virgin era CV and modern sounds.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Monday, 29 September 2014 23:38 (six years ago) link

one year passes...

Anyone have any thoughts on the various live albums released? I'm specifically interested in something good-sounding from their Virgin era (83-87).

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Tuesday, 6 September 2016 21:17 (four years ago) link

Has there been any sign of any further early remasters after red Mecca came out a couple of years ago. Would love copies of those first couple of lps in better sound on cd.

Stevolende, Tuesday, 6 September 2016 21:28 (four years ago) link

ten months pass...

Nobody captured noirish paranoia better than Cabaret Voltaire. Like a William Friedkin movie in a song.

carpet_kaiser, Sunday, 16 July 2017 02:53 (three years ago) link

RHKs new album is very pre-Virgin era CV sounding.

mark e, Sunday, 16 July 2017 17:04 (three years ago) link

I am listening to "Fool's Game" right now in honor of this revive

sleeve, Sunday, 16 July 2017 18:11 (three years ago) link

Funny how the 12" mix of "Blue Heat" wound up on the CD when there never was a 12" released. I'm guessing it was planned but the label said no.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Monday, 17 July 2017 01:25 (three years ago) link

one month passes...

Every couple of years I revisit early Cabs, and it just sounds better each time. I mean, I've always dug the singles but today I spun "2x45" (love it), "Three Mantras" (Western Mantra is epic, Eastern not as much), "Red Mecca" (still warming to some of it) and rediscovered Stephen Mallinder's solo album "Pow-Wow Plus" which has some fantastic tracks that would fit well on 2x45. I even ordered the rare CD edition of the latter though I noted it removes two tracks from the original EP (1-20 and 1-34).

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Sunday, 3 September 2017 21:03 (three years ago) link

eleven months pass...

after a weekend of CV excess and a few glasses of wine I succumbed and ordered the Technology/'92 revision cd.
I have avoided this release ever since it came out due to fear of altering the originals too much.
so far I have to say I was a fool as I am loving the minimal CV styled electo-funk revisions.
the music is very stripped back in comparison to the originals, but there is still that CV sound.
something that after years of listening to late 80s/early 90s dance remixes I did not expect to be honest.
that said, back in '92 I was not as open minded and would have probably hated this set.
also, this now means I have a complete set of CVCD1-CVCD4 at long bloody last.

mark e, Wednesday, 29 August 2018 19:40 (two years ago) link

I think it's just you and me on this thread, Mark. I wish I shared your enthusiasm for their 90s work but - nope.

I often have a compulsion to play "The Original Sound Of Sheffield 83-87" comp with all their amazing 12" versions. In that era, most 12" versions took a bit of the chorus and maybe one other section and just looped them but CV's extended versions are truly definitive.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Wednesday, 29 August 2018 20:17 (two years ago) link

my era has always been the 80s era (Crackdown > CODE).
hence I held off from getting this '92 remix set for a very long time.
having heard most of it now I still prefer the originals,
but I will add it to my list of CV listens as it has a definite CV sound to it, albeit different to the albums/12" versions.
as I said this weekend on twitter, the "83-87" compilation is by far the best compilation of their groove ever in my opinion.
nothing surpasses those 12" versions.

mark e, Wednesday, 29 August 2018 20:45 (two years ago) link

Anyone have any thoughts on the various live albums released? I'm specifically interested in something good-sounding from their Virgin era (83-87).

I have only the live album that comes with 'Deform .. ' boxset which was very much the late EMI era.
the sound quality is debateable to say the least for a major label boxset.
it sounds like a beefed up crowd based cassette recording as opposed to a mixing disc recording.
hence I care not for it.
a true stereo mixing desk recording of such a gig would be totally insane, but this recording is not that.
thankfully the rest of the boxset easily makes up for the disappointment.

mark e, Wednesday, 29 August 2018 21:00 (two years ago) link

damn just bumped western mantra it's so SICKKKKKKK

kurt schwitterz, Wednesday, 29 August 2018 21:04 (two years ago) link

don't have that track in the archives.
I have tried a few tracks pre Virgin over the years out of duty, and I even have VOA on vinyl, but its way too raw for me.

mark e, Wednesday, 29 August 2018 21:07 (two years ago) link

xp Three Mantras is fantastic. Here's another great one that just might be my favorite CV track. I wish it was twice as long.

nerve_pylon, Wednesday, 29 August 2018 21:51 (two years ago) link

one year passes...

*hears three mantras once*

this is the best band that ever existed

american bradass (BradNelson), Thursday, 2 January 2020 05:43 (ten months ago) link

really wish i had gotten into this band years ago though idk if i'd have been ready for them before now

american bradass (BradNelson), Thursday, 2 January 2020 06:10 (ten months ago) link

2x45 rocks my world

american bradass (BradNelson), Thursday, 2 January 2020 06:11 (ten months ago) link

I kinda want to know what you'd think of Mallinder's Pow Wow album (partly bcz it's the only CV I know, but I love it! and am planning a Cabs deep dive p soon) though I'm not sure if it's streaming anywhere

PLEB AF (Drugs A. Money), Thursday, 2 January 2020 06:17 (ten months ago) link

Pow Wow = minor league Cabs.

Soup on my lanyard (Tom D.), Thursday, 2 January 2020 07:32 (ten months ago) link

Is there any likelihood that the early 3 piece lps are ever going to be remastered? I think Red Mecca was when it came out on vinyl with free cd but want the others in best sound. & I think any reissue has just been of the original cd.
Do love that early stuff. Don't really like the 2 piece stuff too much. Though the bits of solo stuff from the 90s I have heard seemed ok.

Stevolende, Thursday, 2 January 2020 08:31 (ten months ago) link

I love "Western Mantra" but not so much "Eastern Mantra". The dynamism of the former really appeals to me whereas the drone of the latter is too dominant.

"2x45", with the brilliant "Yashar" is their transition from their early style towards something more accessible.

I only discovered "Pow Wow" a few years ago but it fits nicely in the period we're discussing. Minor league, for sure, but still has it's charms.

Stevo, do you think remastering of the early material will make a difference? Not exactly hifi recording gear in the first place.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Thursday, 2 January 2020 15:25 (ten months ago) link

The duo records I return to the most are Drinking Gasoline and Microphonies, have s soft spot for other tracks but it's spotty from The Crackdown onwards.

Maresn3st, Thursday, 2 January 2020 15:31 (ten months ago) link

been really transfixed by the live album hai! over the last few days

american bradass (BradNelson), Thursday, 2 January 2020 16:06 (ten months ago) link

that version of "diskono" feels both of and ahead of and beyond its time, which i suppose is the cabaret voltaire effect

american bradass (BradNelson), Thursday, 2 January 2020 16:07 (ten months ago) link

Brad u gotta check out Voice Of America! prob my favorite

subway Stalinist (sleeve), Thursday, 2 January 2020 17:08 (ten months ago) link

yeah i'll be doubling back to the early albums shortly, especially after hearing three mantras. i listened to mix-up a few times in college and iirc it just scared me lol

american bradass (BradNelson), Thursday, 2 January 2020 17:26 (ten months ago) link

i feel obligated to point out that Ekoplekz released an album called In Search of the Third Mantra this year.

"Third of the Storms" Jazz (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Friday, 3 January 2020 12:12 (ten months ago) link

RIYL cheap drum machines and retro plinky synths

"Third of the Storms" Jazz (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Friday, 3 January 2020 12:13 (ten months ago) link

a question. on the CV methodology: attic tapes (74/75) there are tracks called things like "Synthi AKS (Piece One)". did they have a AKS? weren't they crazily expensive at the time? (~£450 at launch which is well over £5k today)

(this is £6 on google play music store btw, £20 on amazon)

koogs, Friday, 3 January 2020 12:30 (ten months ago) link

I was listening to Ekoplekz thing just hours ago but the significance of the title didn't even occur to me!

I haven't heard Hai! before now. This appears to have been a non-trivial oversight. I'm clearly unworthy of my username.

Nag! Nag! Nag!, Friday, 3 January 2020 13:25 (ten months ago) link

Funny, it actually hit me after a recent Cab Volt jag. Always wondered where that third mantra got to.

did they have a AKS? weren't they crazily expensive at the time?

According to Wikipedia about £450 originally but worth thousands by the end of the 70s.

"Third of the Storms" Jazz (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Friday, 3 January 2020 13:43 (ten months ago) link

seven months pass...

New (RHK-only) album coming this fall. Sounds pretty good, but also not that different from all of his other project names.

Doctor Madame Frances Experimento, LLC", Wednesday, 19 August 2020 15:23 (three months ago) link

three months pass...

this new album sounds very Virgin era CV, and rather different to the solo RHK material that i have heard (URP Vol 1-3, Truckers, Sandoz, Dasein, Electronic Eye), mainly due to the drums and complete lack of techno basslines.

mark e, Saturday, 21 November 2020 16:00 (one week ago) link

that said, i am only halfway through the album, so, things could change of course.
but so far its hitting the spot for me.

mark e, Saturday, 21 November 2020 16:02 (one week ago) link

It brings to mind the Drinking Gasoline EP. It's solid but I miss Mal, so there's Wrangler for that.

Gerald McBoing-Boing, Saturday, 21 November 2020 18:39 (one week ago) link

I have only heard one track so far and that vaguely made me think of "Red Mecca". I miss Mal too and I do find it hard to really accept it as being CV without him.

stirmonster, Saturday, 21 November 2020 18:42 (one week ago) link

GMB : exactly.
it is very much of that era.
there is little use of modern bass heavy production that i thought would be present.
and while i get and understand the whole missing Mal thing, i subscribe to the CV (trio) -> CV (duo) -> CV (solo) path
i have no issue with RHK using the name.
as i said, this album sounds very different to a lot of the RHK solo material i have heard.
(that said Dasein sounded like a CV album with its use of clipped guitars/samples)

mark e, Saturday, 21 November 2020 19:16 (one week ago) link

Yes, it is fair enough really and I have engaged with several post Mal CV releases.

stirmonster, Saturday, 21 November 2020 20:05 (one week ago) link

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