Monday, April 27, 2009

After The Fire: Laser Love (1980) + Batteries Not Included (1981)

After The Fire originally formed in 1971/early 1972 with Peter Banks on keyboards, John Leach on bass and Ian Adamson on drums. The original group disbanded in December 1972. Peter went on to play keyboards for Narnia, playing alongside John Russell.
In 1974 Peter and Ian decided to breathe new life into ATF and started auditions for a guitar player. Andy Piercy approached the pair, and after a settling of opinions the Piercy/Banks partnership was formed. The early material took the form of Christian stories. In 1975 Robin Childs joined the band as a bass player.
In 1977 Robin left, replaced by Nick Battle and Ian left to be replaced by a "strange" drummer, Ivor Twidell. By late 1977 Nick had decided to leave but was persuaded to stay to record Signs of Change.
Signs of Change was released on a private label out of frustration with the Christian record labels who insisted that bands pay up-front. It was an outstanding album for it's time, a little dated now, but well thought through and brilliantly executed. The six tracks are reminiscent of early Genesis and Yes, synth-lead with good-sized instrumental breaks. The album had a limited release of 4000 copies and with an even more limited number including a lyric sheet insert - printed white hand written lyrics on black. The album was distributed by mail order.
ATF moved on musically and with Nick leaving Andy switched to bass (not before various bass players had appeared with the band) and John Russell joined the band as the new guitarist, after seeing the band playing at a pub.
The band was eventually signed up by CBS in 1978 and started recording in the winter. During the production of the Laser Love album no less than 5 producers worked with the band (the band also produced 2 tracks), leaving the final release a little dis-jointed. Some of the tracks were recorded twice by different producers.
During August 1979 the band played the Greenbelt festival for the last time (having been regulars in the past few years) - everything about the bands appearance was electric, from the sound check in the early afternoon to the fireworks that finished the overrun evening performance. It gave the band a chance to air the new tracks before the release of the new album in October 1979.
Ivor left the band in October 1979 after ill health led to his collapse on stage, he was replaced by Nick Brotherwood. The band started work on a new album - 80-f. It was turned down by CBS and led to yet another change in drummer, however, the album contained some excellent tracks like Operator that never saw the light again. An acetate of the album is in existence. This delay cost the band a US tour.
Pete King, ex-Flys drummer, was recruited as the new drummer and quickly filled the role. His style matched the band and he settled in as the band started re-recording the album with Mack as the producer. The album was released with two singles, which again, never got the airplay they deserved. The album sold well in Germany and the band released Sternenflug - a German version of Starflight.
1981 saw the band touring extensively abroad, along with appearances on Old Grey Whistle Test and Rock Goes To College.
The album Batteries Not Included was the most polished release, and sadly the bands last release of new material. The singles did well in London, kept high in the Capital Radio phone votes, but the sales did not reflect this masterpiece.

After The Fire Official Site
Friends of After The Fire

Laser Love tracks:

Laser Love / Joy / Take Me Higher / Life In The City / Suspended Animation / Like The Power Of A jet / One Rule For You / Time To Think / Timestar / Check It Out

Batteries Not Included tracks:

Short Change / Frozen Rivers / Sometimes / Sailing Ship / I Don't Understand Your Love / The Stranger / Rich Boys / Carry Me Home / Dancing in the Shadows / Space Walking / Gina / Stuck in Paris / Bright Lights / Bonus track: One Rule For You (Live Rainbow 1980) [Rich Boys 7" b-side]

After The Fire - Laser Love
After The Fire - Batteries Not Included

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Contents recovery record for repairing corrupted files with Repair Archive function of WinRAR (Alt+R).

Thursday, April 23, 2009

V.A. - 2000 - Dinamita - Las 40 Mejores Canciones del Power Pop

This is a little tribute to one of my favourites dj's of the Spanish radio: Rafa Abitbol, to whom I was in the habit of listening every day, and that I was lucky to know personally years later.
The translate of title of the album is "Dynamite - 40 Better Songs of the Power Pop"
Rafa writes in the booklet:
"The POWER POP was the music that I had to live and that I chose to spread in my first days of Radio. I was lucky. I was in the right place (the breaker FM of Madrid, Spain, ONDA 2), in the perfect moment, with the ideal boss (the unrepeatable Jorge de Antón).
We create a program called "DINAMITA". It was an act of faith.
We were not alone in our particular crusade.
Special mention is deserved to the pioneers' missing programs of the FM as Gonzalo Garrido, Mario Armero or Manolo Fernández.
Among all we wanted to make jump over the airs the conformity and the boredom. We hadn't even idea of how obtaining it. But we leave ourselves to go for the heart and the thing worked.
It was wonderful to verify as those strangers that we were supporting unconditionally convert in artists of worship and they were using as inspiration a new generation of Spanish musicians.
The above mentioned should be small later the maximum protagonists of the Spanish Pop of the 80's.
"DINAMITA" was seven years in antenna. The people say that it broke molds. Maybe. The sure only thing for whom we were doing it day by day is that we were enjoying intensely. From the same way we hope that you enjoy this compilation of milestones of so mythical program.
The majority in those days were considered rare things.
Thanks to God, today they are Classics of Our Time."

This album is dedicated in memory of Jorge of Antón.

I only can put two objections to the album, it should have called "The 40 Better Songs Of The New Wave" and they aren't all those who are, there aren't they all those who are.



The Romantics - What I Like About You / Stranglers - No More Heroes / Cheap Trick - Surrender / Flash & The Pan - Hey St. Peter / Mink DeVille - Spanish Stroll / Dr. Feelgood - Roxette / Talking Heads - Television Man / Blondie - Picture This / Split Enz - I Got You / Chris Spedding - Woman Trouble / The Motels - Total Control / Fisher Z - The Worker / Tom Robinson Band - Power In The Darkness / Graham Parker & The Rumour - Hold Back The Night / The Motors - Forget About You / Duran Duran - Save A Prayer / The Jam - The Butterfly Collector / XTC - Ten Feet Tall / The Knack - That's What Little Girls Do / Squeeze - Goodbye Girl


Marta And The Muffins - Echo Beach / Rocky Burnette - Tired Of Toein' The Line / Dexy's Midnight Runners - Geno / Generation X - Dancing With Myself / The Jags - Back Of My Hand / Joe Jackson - You Cant Get What You Want / Kim Wilde - Water On Glass / The Specials - Message To You Rudi / The Selecter - On My Radio / The Vapors - Turning Japanese / Spandau Ballet - To Cut A Long Story Short / The Psychedelic Furs - Heartbreak / Gary Us Bonds - Rendez-Vous / J. Geils Band - Centerfold / The Records - Starry Eyes / Devo - Satisfaction / Ian Hunter - Just Another Night / John Waite - Change / The Ramones - Pet Cemetery / Sex Pistols - God Save The Queen

Dinamita - Las 40 mejor canciones del Power Pop (Part 1 / Part2)
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Bitrate: 320

Both parts in the same folder to unrar.
Contents recovery record for repairing corrupted files with Repair Archive function of WinRAR (Alt+R).

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

V. A. - 1993 - D.I.Y. Come Out And Play-American Power Pop (1975-78)

Come Out and Play - American Power Pop I (1975-78) does a nice job highlighting the various strains of the genre as it resurged during the late 70's in the US, from the jittery sounds of The Nerves, through the AOR of Earth Quake, punky Diodes, sugary sweet Pezband, and nerd-popper Chris Stamey. The disc provides plenty of impetus to crate dig in search of the generally semi-obscure and truly forgotten bands that make up the majority of the track list, that my only complaints come in the inclusion of the too-obvious Flamin' Groovies track "Shake Some Action" and A-listers Cheap Trick, a band anyone who picks up this set will already be familiar with (even if their killer "Southern Girls" totally fits the vibe), while Chris Bell's "I Am The Cosmos" is sorta a downer to close on. Otherwise, a solid comp ready for windows-down, summertime crusin'.
~ bpnicast at Rate Your Music


Flamin' Groovies - Shake Some Action / Pezband - Baby It's Cold Outside / The Nerves - Hanging On The Telephone / Artful Dodger - Wayside / Earthquake - Hit The Floor / Piper - Can't Wait / The Nerves - When You Find Out / Chris Stamey - The Summer Sun / Tommy Hoehn - Blow Yourself Up / The Scruffs - My Mind / The Names - Why Can't It Be / Cheap Trick - Southern Girls / The Real Kids - All Kindsa Girls / The Paley Brothers - Come Out And Play / Fotomaker - Where Have You Been All My Life / Pezband - Stop! Wait A Minute / The Flash Cubes - Christi Girl / The Diodes - Tired Of Waking Up Tired / Chris Bell - I Am The Cosmos

V. A. - D.I.Y. : Come Out And Play-American Power Pop (1975-78)
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Bitrate: 320

Contents recovery record for repairing corrupted files with Repair Archive function of WinRAR (Alt+R).