Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Killed By Volume: One


The pleasure and the pain of this entire music blogging concept is the sheer volume of archival sites that map out the entire 77-81 era, painstakingly mapping out all it's one-shots, jag-offs and dead-ends.

As many readers may already know the prime sites to peruse for such vinyl obscurica are ISKP, ASM, Punk Friction, Killed By Death, Short Sharp Kick in the Teeth (to name the most focused ones) who put up double-sided obscurities almost every day. (45 Revolutions and Worthless Trash provide wonderfully obsessive histories but be warned of the tease factor: they usually only post one side of the single). The sheer volume of obscurity threatens to overwhelm me, yet I click download again again and again - Rapidshare, SendSpace, Zshare, Boxnet, Megaupload, Sharebee - aaarrrggghhhh!

My musicoholism grows more wretched and debilitating by the second!

While I cannot compete with the excellent sites already mentioned, I will post some of my own findings just to crank the volume up to 11.


Yorkshire's Excel (discography) with Stephen Smith (bass, lead vocal) Stephen Gawtry (drums), Allan Walsh (guitar) and Richard Taylor (guitar, keyboards) began with the D.I.Y. four-track EP titled "If It Rains" in 1979. Herein you'll find some muddily-produced madness - including the power-pop almost-classic "Rock Show" plus the Dolls-ish "One of the Boys"and the pub-rockin' throwback "Rolling Home".

Download If It Rains

Excel returned to the bins in 1980 with a major label (Polydor) budget upgrade for their final single. Lead-off track "What Went Wrong" combines a mod beat, power-pop vocals, a bit of pub-rock piano and some almost NWOBHM lead guitar. B-side "Junita" shuffles a similar stylistic deck.


Download What Went Wrong

Between singles, Excel recorded a demo, referred to as The Lost Album, some tracks of which best their officially released work. "Bad News" is ripping pop track, "Glossy Sgt Major" is roughed-up glam rock, "Another Silly Day" is bubblegum but with more of that almost NWOBHM guitar work and "Dream My Life Away" sounds like it's being built to compete with Fleetwood Mac. The genre-hopping herein is further proof that punk was not so much a cultural Year Zero, as the rawest elements of thirty years of pop being cobbled-together as an attack upon the greater, stagnated culture.


Download The Lost Album

Thanks to Bored Teenagers, the Mod Punk Archives for the images.

12 comments:

  1. don't give up man ! your site is great!!
    cheers
    stan
    http://shortsharpkickintheteeth.blogspot.com/

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  2. You've got a great blog - nice, original commentary that makes it a lot more personal than a lot of what's out there. Oh, and the tunes are great too!

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  3. For one second I thought you'd lost your mind and were doing a post on the awesome and very Koop friendly Excel of late 80's thrash fame. I'm glad I was wrong!

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  4. You, sir, would do an amazing post on Excel (or Suicidal Cro-Mag Slaughter et al) but that's for a blog with more yyyyeeaaahhhh!!! (*singer holds mike up in air and bellows like Dio).

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  5. I've only been going for a couple of weeks and don't deserve to be mentioned in the same breathe as those other blogs. I've never been focused in my life lol


    Great Excel posts btw. A big thanks.

    PS Love those Christian Ramones as well. Funniest thing I've heard for a good while!

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  6. Perfect beatles-influenced powerpop. Really great!!!

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  7. Razor
    Thanks. I'll quit one day - but not soon.

    Steve
    Thanks - always good to hear when someone appreciates the words.

    Longy
    While I did labour a bit over who to include on that mini-list there was no way I could leave off someone who's posted so much good material so fast. Don't sell yourself short!

    HP
    The Beatles always lurked just in the background in this era, which helped give the best bands their pop edge.

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  8. WOW THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR POSTING THE ALBUM . I'VE BEEN WANTING TO HERE IT FOR A LONG TIME .GREAT SITE!! KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK

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  9. Many thanks.
    I was looking for ages the Excel's stuff

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  10. Frank

    Glad you enjoyed it - I added you to my blogroll - excellent work you're doing over at Shotgun Solution.

    Iron

    You're welcome. Thanks for your post of the first Gas single over on PPA (I finally added your proper address to my blogroll).

    I've got decent rips of a bunch of the the Ga's stuff but I'm still lacking cover art - if you know anyone who can help let me know.

    P.S. Are you a Soulseek user? That name is familiar...

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  11. this is embarassing, and you don't are going to believe me, but I don't know whos is this people, however if you take your time to put in your post, surely them are goods.

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  12. Hello MRML!

    Any chance of a re-up of this album? In any case, thank you for all the stuff you share with us and keep up with your good job!

    ReplyDelete

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