Thursday 31 December 2015

Sympathy Nervous ‎– "No More Expo" (Negative Emission ‎– NE-1002T) 1980

Japanese cassette only proto-rave electronica from the year zero of 'popular' synth music. This could easily have been recorded yesterday,and as far as some modern musical forms are concerned, it sounds like tomorrow.
Inspired by the electronic German groups,why Yoshifumi Niinuma isn't mentioned in the same breath as Manuel Göttsching in regards to making the first House/Techno record, i really don't know; as this was released four years before "E2-E4".Maybe because no-one gave a shit about Japanese music in Europe,and no-one had even heard of Sympathy Nervous even in Japan?Blame obscurity?
This is better than "E2-E4" anyway, that particular landmark was more Trance-y than this tape I suppose,so it has that guilt to bear at least.


A1 No More Expo
A2 Music Of The S.N. Phase-1
A3 Lace Master
A4 Khahi Cloud
A5 My Favorite Patch
B1 Money Crisis
B2 Heart Of The Sun (Roger Waters)
B3 Pale Port
B4 Spirit Of The Bomb
B5 Mescal

DOWNLOAD and expo no more HERE!

Wednesday 30 December 2015

Sympathy Nervous ‎– "Sympathy Nervous" (Vanity Records ‎– vanity 0007) 1980

Surprisingly thin on the ground,even more so that in the USA, is decent Japanese Minimal Synth music from the cusp o'the eighties. There was plenty of plinky plonk synth pop like The Plastics,or awful high budget blandness like Yellow Magic Orchestra,but nothing to compare with the devastating Noise rock which that densely populated island produces en masse.
One shining exception was/is Sympathy Nervous, aka Yoshifumi Niinuma, who gleaned his inspiration from the German electronic underground of the so-called Krautrock era. A more tasteful Resurrection of the axis alliance to produce something of benefit to mankind with some timeless proto-techno of the highest order.


A1 A Worm
A2 Go On And Off
A3 Temperament
A4 Deaf Picture
B1 Automatic Type
B2 Quick Starttype
B3 Inverted Type
B4 Sympathetic Nerves

DOWNLOAD sympathetically or nervously HERE!

Tuesday 29 December 2015

John Bender ‎– "Pop Surgery" (Record Sluts ‎– RS 004) 1983

A Minimal Synth classic that is almost fit enough to shine the shoes of 'Metamatic','Computer World' or 'The Pleasure Principle'; more importantly,done on a minuscule budget compared to those major label classics.But probably has more in common with stuff like the immeasurably wonderful "Dada Computer".
More introverted and suffocated analogue classics from a bedroom lost in the smogs of ignorance, only to emerge from that fuzzy egg as an ugly duckling that we don't want to turn into a Swan.

It says on the sleeve:
"The material on this album is gleaned from tapes 53 thru 68 
and was conceived in 1982 and the 1st quarter of 1983"......I assume the numbers in the titles refer to the year of the source material? 1953????? It seems that John Bender is claiming to be the Inventor of Synth Pop?


A154-2 Meat
A265-2 Galacial
A360-1 Thought
A460-2 Mallinder
A560-3 Hand
A660-4 Day
B157-1 Dance
B267-4 Glass
B353-2 Blue
B468-1 Cows
B568-2 Amalgamelon
B668-3 Unrelated

DOWNLOAD an appointment at the pop surgery HERE!

Monday 28 December 2015

John Bender ‎– "Plaster:The Prototypes" (Self-Released Cassette) 1981

You can't get more minimal synth than this homemade ,very, minimal synth classic tape from the now missing in action John Bender.15 tracks of lonely analogue sequences buzzing above submerged vocals enhanced with cold sounding room ambiance,over simple drum box beats. What more could a downtown johnny come lately disc jockey want to play in the chill out room of the night spot that was ,until recently, very a la mode?

DOWNLOAD and get protypically plastered HERE!

Sunday 27 December 2015

John Bender ‎– "I Don't Remember Now" (Record Sluts ‎– RS 001) 1980

From the "Metal Benders" of Dark Day, to fellow electronic contemporary Bender, of the John variety(what a segue!).
A more harsh and sparce variety of crude DIY electronica from Mr Bender,all released on his own Record Sluts label in handmade sleeves. This one being an attractive generic brown card sleeve with rubber stamped by hand designs that were unique to each of the thousand that were manufactured.
Excellent claustrophobic bedroom minimal synth classics, with inaudible introverted vocals low in the mix. Fabulous stuff.



remember to DOWNLOAD it now HERE!

Saturday 26 December 2015

Dark Day ‎– "Exterminating Angel" (Infidelity ‎– JMB-229) 1980

The Gary Numan of Manhattan's first Dark Day LP is from the time when electronic acts still used real drummers and guitars like The Numiester himself. Mainly due to a lack of a decent drum machine and syncing problems. On his second album, "Window" he uses that cheapo organists drum module with the preset rhythms we have heard on hundreds of tunes of that epoch. So this debut outing, after the end of his tenure in DNA, steers towards the doomy synth punk end of the woods.
A transitional record which would lead to a purer, and darker, form of minimal synth pop.


A1Raven's Wing
A2Forced Landing
A3Arp's Carpet
A5Crown Of Thorns
A6No, Nothing, Never
B1Laughing Up Your Sleeve
B2Flightless Birds
B3Crib Death
B4Diving Belle
B5Me, Myself, & I
B6Univited Guests

DOWNLOAD the dark angel of no wave HERE!

Thursday 24 December 2015

The Die or DIY? Christmas Mixtape 2015 - "Have You Been Naughty Or Nice? Or Will You Have To DIE Or DIY?"(30 Electronic Misses From The Pre-Midi Era)" (a Die or DIY? Mixtape No.8)

As the technology era progresses to the point where we all carry around our brains, now renamed as 'Smart hand Held devices' or 'Phones'. Tech took over pop Music's Brain, if it ever had one, years ago. Dancing to a machine was a rather intriguing Avant garde concept in the late seventies, but that is now music for the masses, thumping its hypnotic beat in every hideous meat market disco around our dying planet. Before MIDI,or Musical Instrument Digital Interface was standardised, so machines could talk to each other, we had the rather unstable Controlled Voltage and gate method of sequencing a synthesiser, or play it by hand. The result of which preserved the much missed human factor that is glaringly missing from today's disco tunes.Even the singer gets 'auto-tuned' on what seems like every record.
So, as you unwrap your new brain replacement device and government tracking and data collection your new smart phone. Slip this years Xmas mixtape on your iPhone and marvel at the wobbly, unsyncopated  beats and melodies of these 30 ditties from a time when not being a primordial cyborg was normal.


1.Ausgang Verboten - "Consumer"
2.Unovidual & Tara Cross - "Comme Je Suis"
3.Les Yeux Interdit - "Prison"
4.Ptose - "Boule(Viens Ici!)
5.Etat des Stocks - "She's Got Big Tits"
6.Dark Day - "Nudes In The Forest"
7.Danton's Voice - "Magic Mushroom"
8.Andi Arroganti - "Hom-O-Hetero"
9.Das Kabinette - "Fudge It"
10.Deux - "Ministry Of Love"
11.Duotronic Synterror - "Liebe Auf Den Ersten Blick"
12.MAP - "You've Lost That Loving Feeling"
13.Years On Earth - "And I Dream"
14.Sympathy Nervous - "Khaki Cloud"
15.Nine Circles - "The Rose"
16. Das Ding - "Reassurance Ritual"
17.John Bender - "57-1/Dance"
18.Robert Lawrence - "Japanese Brain warning"
19.Sentimentale Jugend - "Tote Kammer"
20.AD - "Conspiracy"
21.Synthefall - "Abzahlreim"
22.Zirkel Junger Musiker - "Hochwasser"
23.Treibeis - "Vinylbabies"
24.The Klingons - "Temptation"
25.Machines At Last - "The Colony"
26.High Bias - "The Killing Of The Cats"
27.Gen Ken Montgomery - "When I'm walking"
28.Another View - "Power Station"
29.Suisse - "Live At Longbourn"
30.Modern Art - "Hello-Goodbye"

DOWNLOAD something naughty but nice HERE!

Wednesday 23 December 2015

Dark Day ‎– "Window" (Plexus USA ‎– KMH709230) 1982

Not all American Synth Pop was clueless of course,although I'm not too great a fan of the first dark Day LP,the second, 'Window', could have easily been from the reject pile in Mute records office, or an underground cassette from Frankfurt.
You would never believe that the main protagonist of Dark Day was in legendary No-wavers DNA!
Robin Crutchfield's voice could easily pass for one of those androgynous English chaps in those electro-pop duo's of the early eighties.Hopefully this is natural,and not an attempt to be mistaken for English so he gets signed up? Undoubtedly Robin enjoyed having his Crutchfield (geddit?) by male groupies ; or by his collaborator, a certain Mr B. Sack (The 'B' could stand for Ball, but its misspelled as Bill, how boring!).
Dunno what it is that attracts Homosexual Men to synth pop,but they seem to be essential to make a listenable dark pop tune with synthesisers.
Pretty good stuff,and as a 'Metal Bender' myself, as in one actually bends metal into art/craft pieces,not the other English slang term for a Gay,(ie 'Bender'); I will be using track three,"Metal Benders", as my work website theme tune.High praise indeed?
Basically, they sound like a doomy, slowed down,lo-budget Depeche Mode(Post Vince Clarke) fronted by a depressed English public school boy, or drama student.


A2Don't Bother
A3The Metal Benders
A4Mr. Potatohead
B1Nudes In The Forest
B4Eternal Return
B5Second Warning

DOWNLOAD to brighten your day HERE!

or DOWNLOAD for a brighter day HERE!

Tuesday 22 December 2015

Bored Young Men ‎– "Is Crude OK?" (Sound Of Pig ‎– SOP 122) 1988

Shifting along the vast Sound Of Pig roster from the certified intellectualism of Joseph Nechvatal, to the intellectual Synth Pop of the excellently branded 'Bored Young Men'. This is Synth Pop, American Style,devoid of the sex of European and UK synth pop,and tinged with that (non)'sophisticated' American Humour. Like the difference between US 'comedies' like "Friends" and "Frasier", with their painfully unfunny witty dialogue, and British cynically silly, surreal but crass comedies like "The Mighty Boosh" or "The Smell of Reeves and Mortimer". 
Basically sophistication isn't sophisticated, just like a teenager tries to draw like a child's concept of how an adult should draw. To draw like a child when you have the ability to do photo-realism is the height of sophistication. Its more than Ironic that this tape is called "Is Crude Ok?"...yes it is, but I hear none here!
Thats where this tape falls down as classic minimal synth-pop, its too annoyingly restrained and mannered,like its been made by your 'cool' mum and dad.

DOWNLOAD to be a slightly less bored young man or woman HERE!

Saturday 19 December 2015

Joseph Nechvatal ‎– "Babbling Tongues Of Metamorphoses" ( Sound Of Pig ‎– SOP 75) 1987

So you thought that Negativland were a bunch of Smart-arses eh? Well here's a bona-fide smart arse, with qualifications-a-plenty in smart-arseism. This geezer can do Plunderphonia as well as being able to explain what he's doing,why he's doing it and probably write a thesis on said subject. 
If you had ever wondered who was responsible for those zany art theories of viractualism and Cybism, Dr Nechvatal ,yes he's a doctor(not the medical variety you philistine!),is yer man. And on his days off,not that Artists ever have a day off, he churns out the odd swirling sound collage constructed from found sounds and snot......quite like this fruity blast of mashed up ectoplasm ,baked and served as a rectangular plastic pie of intellectual offal.

Side A
Side B

DOWNLOAD someone cleverer than you HERE!

Tuesday 15 December 2015

Negativland ‎– "Points" (Seeland ‎– SEELAND 002) 1981

Yes these fuckers are a bunch of smart arses, but their records are pretty good.This 1981 effort, showcases their trademark sound collage technique and a fair amount of plunderphonia.
There's an early nod towards what would be the 'Incredibly Strange Music' fad of the late nineties, with a tribute to Perry and Kingsley  of "The In Sound From Way Out"(one of thee best album titles of all time or what?) fame, on track two.
Bucket loads of found sounds and sound manipulation on offer to satisfy any number of coffee table weirdos you care to imagine.
What would be a sublime irony is if Negativland or the wankers who manage them,or own the rights to their music,ask (better still, Dee-mand) for this link to be removed. As Blakey from 'On The Buses'* would say, "that'd make my day, Butler"!

*"On The Buses" was a satirical British sit-com from the 
'60s and 70's' that accurately portrayed life in the United Kingdom as dominated by the trade unions and the working classes.....ah them were the days. We working classes owned that country before Thatcher ruined it all. Now we have nothing left.....all stolen by the Toffs. We don't even have football anymore,Beer is extortionate,even every actor is now posh because no-one from the lower echelons can afford to go to drama school.....fuck the posh cunts up in the imminent revolution!Reclaim the streets, then watch "On The Buses".


A1Harry To The Ferry
A2The Answer Is
A3The Scolding Box
A4That Darn 'Keet
A5Dear Mary
A6Clutch Cargo '81
B2A Nice Place To Live
B3A Bee Fly
B4No Hands
B5Potty Air

DOWNLOAD points to good taste HERE!

Monday 14 December 2015

Negativland ‎– "Negativland" (Seeland ‎– SEELAND 001) 1980

Negativland were probably the ultimate 'Smart Arse' band,but their early records were probably the closest any American group got to the UK DIY sound. A lot of the tracks on this LP could have easily appeared on a self-released cassette by some depressed teen locked in a bedroom in some grey council estate in Accrington,(Which is in north western England by the way,around 1979.It just lacks that trademark muffled Lancastrian voice,droning on about kitchens and vacuum cleaners;instead we get some standard Californian whine,which does tend to irritate;luckily this appears rarely.
Contrary to their own press,they didn't invent plunderphonics, but they did evolve into some very effective pranksters,culminating in the U2 fiasco.
Very obviously European influenced,(note the Neu references in their name and record label), this has obviously distanced the members from the Good 'ol Boy rock ethic that permeates nearly every vulnerable God lovin' American.
This is the CD version,which came in a little  wallpaper covered box with various inserts,and a badge(Seat Bee Sate).I think mine even had a piece of bark included? Those wacky San Franciscans! There must be something in the water in that urban sector of northern California,as these chaps are very similar to those other residents of this city.....The Residents.....but obviously nowhere near as weird.

  1. 1 (1:01)
  2. 2 (1:25)
  3. 3 (2:16)
  4. 4 (1:22)
  5. 5 (5:19)
  6. 6 (1:18)
  7. 7 (0:57)
  8. 8 (1:01)
  9. 9 (2:02)
  10. 10 (1:36)
  11. 11 (0:47)
  12. 12 (0:33)
  13. 13 (1:55)
  14. 14 (0:38)
  15. 15 (2:12)
  16. 16 (3:17)
  17. 17 (1:12)
  18. 18 (1:34)
  19. 19 (5:04)
  20. 20 (1:09)

DOWNLOAD this positiv negativ HERE!

Friday 11 December 2015

Crawling With Tarts - "Crawling With Tarts" (ASP) 1986

This could well be Crawling With Tarts' debut release as far as I know;and its not as you'd expect.
Not too much abstract noise collages,although there are a few of these of course. Mainly its a drum kit and Bass work out,in a DIY Post-punky duo stylee, and is therefore, 1/, very unamerican, and 2/, reasonably entertaining for that low brow area of the cerebral cortex that enjoyed Punk Rock so much.
Well pruned avant-rock minimalism,relieved of the more pretentious branches that can make so much of US'86 cassette culture releases so samey and , yes, boring. They got worse after this,losing the naive charm of discovering that you didn't have to be Led Zeppelin to make a record after all.

Track Listing:

Side A
A01 - 100 Times
A02 - Collision of 2 cultures
A03 - Art on the run
A04 - Zebra crossing
A05 - Zoo fux zoo
A06 - L'air de paisterre
A07 - Kanga + kippers
A08 - Dancing with skullboys
A09 - Grasses were ropes
A10 - Lou way zanin
A11 - Theatre of motar
A12 - Clay
A13 - Un autre chant funèbre

Side B
B01 - Sanddled for riding
B02 - E-wire walleye
B03 - Penis driver
B04 - Manor
B05 - Fi fi la fongs
B06 - Bones
B07 - Devant l'air de paisterre
B08 - Pianobar
B09 - Salinas balroom
B10 - Bacchant
B11 - Mass
B12 - Kingbird
B13 - E
B14 - Love 100 times

DOWNLOAD some tarts to crawl with HERE!

Wednesday 9 December 2015

Crawling With Tarts and Deathranch ‎– "Deathranch and Crawling With Tarts" (ASP ‎– ASP 20) 1991

Erstwhile collaborators with,and former members of, Big City Orchestra, Deathranch's collaboration with the interestingly named Crawling With Tarts.
I don't know if its meant to sound like this,or its just the worn out tape on this cassette,but these pieces seem to consist of two monaural tracks panned hard to the left and right. One stereo track being some fairly challenging abstract compositions,balanced by the other side of the stereo field being taken up by a uniform fog of Dolby off tape hiss.Not unlike a monaural version of The New Blockaders "Epater Les Bourgeoise", but only half as pretentious.

Track Listing:

1-7. "Untitled"

DOWNLOAD to only half impress the middle classes HERE!

Sunday 6 December 2015

Deathranch ‎– "A Prisoner" ( Sound Of Pig ‎– SOP 239) 1989

Former Big City Orchestra collaborators  on the "Massacre of the Innocents" album, also on Sound Of Pig; Deathranch (whoever they were?) had a life of their own.
Bordering on the Avant Garde at time, with hints of abstract composition, this release suggests that those hanging out at the deathranch were no ordinary noise cowboys.A constantly shifting melange of found sounds,porn movies, drones, strangled noise and some unexpected musicianship. A fascinatingly good addition to the vast SOP canon of weirdness.

DOWNLOAD and be a prisoner of the deathranch HERE!

Friday 4 December 2015

Big City Orchestra ‎– "Bretagne" (Nihilistic Recordings ‎– NhR066) 1989

Bretagne is the Celtic part of France, which was once attached to south west England during the ice-age by land;  and they extended their reach into Wales, Scotland and Ireland .
This C-60 sounds like a malfunctioning radio in a freezer centre(again!), and it wouldn't surprise me if this is what it sounds like in the Celtic mind, for Bretagne is full of weirdo's. Cornwall used to be full of weirdo's, now its even worse; packed with trust fund hippies,even richer adrenaline junkie surfers;and even worse still, Lawyers and stockbrokers with holiday homes. In fact whilst  thinking of those three population groups my mind is producing a similar noise to this recording......hmmmmmm,.now I understand.


1. Albin-Haler (31.40)
2. Xzintrailles (31.35)

DOWNLOAD the warped mind of a celt HERE!

Wednesday 2 December 2015

Big City Orchestra - "Childhood Rememberences" (Seiten Sprung Aufnahmen) 1989

As this is firmly in Drone territory, I have very little left to say about this genre; But this tape is crammed full of dark ambient drones littered with nostalgic melodies from your lost childhood. A soundtrack to do some Rebirth Therapy to. 


B1Marie Stuart
B4Louis Labe

DOWNLOAD a virtual childhood HERE!

Tuesday 1 December 2015

Big City Orchestra ‎– "Myth Makers" (Nihilistic Recordings ‎– NhR033) 1987

This is BCO as if mixed by Adrian Sherwood and Willem de Kooning. Set Flanger feedback knobs to max and echo box's to variable, this is music in the style of a Jackson Pollock action painting.
More painting references,as this is as much non-music as Pollock's "No.5" is non-painting. Its formlessness is its form, as random sounds and effects bounce from all directions like spilt paint. Chaos Theory in action,and one of the best BCO tapes It avoids boredom like a Christian avoids the Theory of Evolution.


A1Warriors Of The Deep
A2Colony In Space
A3Wheel In Space
B3War Games

DOWNLOAD and make your own myth HERE!