Monday, 29 September 2014

The Dead C - "DR503" (Flying Nun FN092) 1987

Don't ask me what DR503 stands for, could be a Roland Drum Machine,but can't be arsed to google it;not relevant.

This is Dead C in half-baked song mode, caught in the no man’s land of composition and improvisation. These tracks seem to be songs, but they don't really qualify as such. A half thought of a constructed song, ripped apart by the need to explore the sonic extremities of unpopular sound. The sounds that record company producers and engineers have told us are awful and worthless!? What do those insiders know about anything?......fuck all, is the answer. The number of great groups they have ruined throughout the decades amounts to a cultural atrocity of jail-able proportions. When I think about how great Pink Floyd were before EMI got hold of them, turned them into some rinky dink mickey mouse psychedelic group,and forced Syd towards insanity ;I start to spontaneously implode! (although I do actually like “Piper at the gates of Dawn”,but that ain't the point!)

The Dead C explore all these areas that were hitherto thought of as unlistenable. Like they are recorded by a set of tin cans and string instead of microphones, direct to a wax cylinder. Decades of Hi-fidelity technology is laid redundant in just a few short crackling, fizzy detuned notes.

This is the Dead C's debut album, and the fact that it has very little of that “please like me” attitude of many a debut recording, is something to cherish. This is the sound of a dying society, and the funeral dirge for the rock'n'roll myth.


1 Max Harris 5:33
2 Speed Kills 4:28
3 The Wheel 4:46
4 Three Years 4:49
5 Mutterline 5:14
6 Country 1:19
7 I Love This 3:09
8 Polio 9:09
9 Max Harris 2 13:36


bill said...

Very glad to get this from Mega and not Google. Seems that Kim Dotcom's place is much more appropriate as you say. Long may he continue to buck the system.

J.H.M. said...

The interesting thing about The Dead C's sound is that it has that grainy sound regardless of how high-fidelity the recording is because of the equipment they use. Bruce Russell has talked about how his amplifier of choice is this ancient thing that he picked up used back in the '80s and it's always naturally distorted in this weird way that makes it sound like it's being played through a cassette... but really, REALLY loud. I love that, and I love their work.

Jonny Zchivago said...

We may be alone,but i doubt it,but you can't beat the sound of an over amplified cassette and cassette player? Am I mad?
I want one of those amps,my guitar sound is far too good, and i don't wanna put my foot through the speaker cone,cus i is poor!
Cheers JHM

mrsblucher said...

I bought this second hand in 1993-ish and have the shame hanging round my neck of taking it back to the store (Echo Records, George St, Dunedin) and saying there was something wrong with the CD. i'd heard 3 Years on the x'way cassette and knew it well (really liked the track), and i remember comparing this version and being totally certain there was something wrong. cds they were a new thing right? the response of the guy behind the counter is etched in memory, and i never got my money back.

Jonny Zchivago said...

Well,the thing with the Dead C is if it sounds funny they meant it to sound funny......unless it was the CD which i would not be surprised about because CD's are the shittest rip off since the rip before them.
i wouldn't be embarrassed, i have a friend who took his Massive Attack CD back to the shop complaining of surface noise as if it was a vinyl record!After an explanation that the group used samples off scratchy vinyl,he still wanted his money back because he thought the group played the instruments themselves! He never got his money back either!