January-February 2012 ( with musical selections )
( UK) Terri B: “We Are One” from Abstract. Stone Premonitions label 1997
The Stone Premonitions label has been one of England’s premier underground and space rock labels for more than 20 years now. Run by Tim Jones of such bands as The Rabbits Hat, Census Of Hallucinations and more this tape from singer Terri B ( Tim’s former spouse) from 1997 is super clean, and tastefully delivered with exquisite production, a trademark of Tim’s label. Still sounds superb.
( Germany) No Comment: “Trajectory” from Genetics II. Psyquil label 1991.
This quartet sort of typified a certain time in German underground music with hammering beats, gurgling synths and a dark, pervasive sound. Sometimes referred to as darkwave, No Comment tread such waters.
( Bulgaria) Violet General: “Konkept” from live. Swindle label 1993.
I am actually only guessing at the titles for this cassette because it is all in Cyrillic. However, I have several other releases from this pounding group of drum machine, synth and bass. I think Violet General was mainly a duo though and it appears this tape is from a live date.
( UK) Ways Of Stephen : “Summertimes Almost Here” from Ways Of Stephen. Bliss Aquamarine label 199?
From the British duo of Michael and Selwyn comes this tape of raveup quality acoustic insistence with nods to Steve Andrews style. Alternately tender and then in your face, an enjoyable tape although very little in the way of bass .
( Australia) Troll: “Mirror” from Down Under Ground. TOAN label 1996.
Troll kicks this 16 track Aussie comp off with a decent hard rocking riff and angry female vocals to good effect. Other bands on this tape : Plantagenet, Sulkus, Crawlspace, Screamworld, Jigsaw and more.
( UK ) The Third State: “Up And Out” from Alone In The Crowd. Obscure Delight label 1989.
A classic offering from Trevor Hall’s long time home recording project, The Third State. Incorporating and exorcising personal demons, social outbursts,
and political outrage propelled by good arrangements with the usual home taper tools of guitar, drum machine and trademark British vocals. A favorite and a really nice guy.
( Bulgaria) The Legendary Pop Tones: Good By Chaos”: from Charge The Oranges In The Casket. No label 1989.
From Sofia, the wacky trio of Ivo, Bobi and MIlo come at you with front room percussion, rudimentary bass and tick tock rhythms. Truly an underground phenomenon by any standard, they went on to make several tapes and do collaborations.
( Germany) Konrad Kraft & Phase Pervers: “?” from Acidshock. SDV Tontrager label 1988.
Konrad Kraft was ( and still is) the project of Detlef Funder from Dussledorf ( at the time). On this tape he exhibits a breathy kind of electronic atmosphere with excellent production and creative impetus. He also had a duo with Birgit Gasser ( aka Dino Oon) and their label, SDV, went on to produce many fine albums of European electronic sound and some rock.
( Italy) ONQ: “Yes, I’ve Lost Yr Knife” from Nothing You Could Be Happy For. Co released on Chupa Verga Rex ( Italy ) and Kylie ( UK) labels. 1998.
I suppose you wedge ONQ into a slow or sadcore pigeonhole with mournful vocals delivered over a melted down bed of strumming. Luca Galuppini was ( and still is I believe) the guy behind it all and has produced many albums of personal music.
( Japan ) Usui Aioi: “Stone” from ?. Chii Tapes 1998.
For a long time, Tadashi “Usui” Aioi was one of the principal home taping contacts for me. He would bounce from pop to guitar noise to ( on this tape) band projects. A talented musician and songwriter , Aioi also had other projects like Balloon Kids. I’m not really sure about the song title or even the name of the tape and you can see from the picture there is no cover and very little info.
( UK ) Every New Dead Ghost: “She’s Waiting” from Every New Dead Ghost. audiofile label ( USA) 1988.
I always lumped this band into the space rock genre with good reason I guess. Their relentless Hawkwind style riffing and guitar breaks were indicative of a certain time and place. They happened to do it pretty well though and with an almost pop urgency. Picked up and released by Carl Howard’s audiofile label after initial release in England.
( UK ) Michael Prime-Morphogenesis: “The Mouth Of Hermes” from MG2. Generations Unlimited label 1988.
Long time experimentalist Michael Prime ran ( and still does ) his Morphogensis project from London creating musique concrete and drone works. On this tape he travels some very interesting roads with field recordings, junk sounds, weird percussion and electronics. A really excellent tape on Gen Ken Montgomery’s Generations Unlimited label. He is also joined in spots by Roger Sutherland and Adam Bohman.