Sunday, 20 April 2014

"Jeopardy / From The Lion’s Mouth / All Fall Down / BBC Live In Concert" by THE SOUND – A Review Of Their 1980, 1981 and 1982 Korova and Warner Brothers Albums - Now Reissued And Remastered Onto 4CDs By Edsel Of The UK In 2014 With A Bonus BBC Live In Concert Disc & Extras…

Here is a link to AMAZON UK to get this remastered 4CD box set at the best price:

"…Kick Off This Skin…" 

When you think about how Joy Division, New Order and of course The Cure have been literally deified in the last 30+ years – it’s odd that London’s The Sound don’t hold that same pedestal. Well I’d argue that this brilliant 4CD Edsel Box Set reissue is not only going to change that - but is also a 2014 reissue of the year. There's a shed load on here - so let’s get to the Post Punk details…

UK released 28 April 2014 - "Jeopardy / From The Lion’s Mouth / All Fall Down / BBC Live In Concert" by THE SOUND on Edsel EDSB 4012 (Barcode 740155401238) is a 4CD Clamshell Mini Box Set of Remasters and breaks down as follows…

Disc 1 (74:11 minutes):
Tracks 1 to 11 are their debut album “Jeopardy” – released November 1980 in the UK on Korova KODE 2
Track 12 is “Physical World” – taken from the “Physical World” EP released independently in the UK on Tortch Records TOR 003 in 1979
Track 13 is “Brute Force” – a 1980 non-album B-side to the UK 7” single for “Heyday” on Korova KOW 10
Tracks 14 to 17 are the “Live Instinct” EP – A Dutch-Only Promo-Only release featuring exclusive live versions of Heartland, Brute Force, Jeopardy and Coldbeat
Tracks 18 to 21 are a BBC Session recorded 26 Sep 1980 for the Mike Read Show broadcast between 6th and 9th of October 1980 and featuring exclusive versions of Heartland, Unwritten Law, Jeopardy and I Can’t Escape Myself

Disc 2 (76:39 minutes):
Tracks 1 to 10 are their 2nd album “From The Lion’s Mouth” – released November 1981 in the UK on Korova KODE 5
Tracks 11 and 13 – “Point Of No Return” and ”Coldbeat” - are the non-album B-sides to the UK 7” single of “Sense Of Purpose” released 1981 on Korova KOW 21
Tracks 12 and 14 – “Hot House” and “New Dark Age (Live)” – are the A&B-sides to a non-album 7” single released 1981 on Korova KOW 23
Tracks 15 to 18 are BBC Sessions recorded for The John Peel Show in November 1981 and are exclusive live versions of Fatal Flaw, Skeletons, Hot House and New Dark Age

Disc 3 (69:19 minutes):
Tracks 1 to 10 are their 3rd album “All Fall Down” – released December 1982 in the UK on WEA 240019-1
Tracks 11 to 14 are BONUSES from the "All Fall Down” Sessions
Tracks 15 to 18 are the “This Cover Keeps Reality Unreal” EP by KEVIN HEWICK & THE SOUND – a 12” single released February 1984 in the UK on Cherry Red Records 12 CHERRY 76

Disc 4 – BBC LIVE IN CONCERT (61:35 minutes):
Tracks 1 to 8 originally broadcast 21 November 1981
Tracks 9 to 15 originally broadcast 15 June 1985

The mini box set has the 3 original vinyl albums in 5” card repro sleeves with a new card for the fourth BBC set. And the chunky 36-page booklet is fantastically detailed – photos of the albums, inners, 7” singles, record labels, industry adverts, lyrics to all three records and exceptionally good liner notes by TIM PEACOCK (of England’s Record Collector magazine) with contributions from band members. It’s a beautifully presented job.

The remasters by PHIL KINRADE at Alchemy are clean, full of presence and power – and really bring out the original production values of Nick Robbins. It’s edgy and full of menace and angst lyrics – love it. And the BBC live stuff in particular has great gusto - the band in full flight and untethered by studio restrictions. 

“Jeopardy” is surely a lost Post Punk classic - opening in high form with “I Can’t Escape Myself” where songwriter Adrian Borland has clearly been listening to Television’s “Marquee Moon” just a little too often (lyrics above).  “Missiles” lets the anger rip and the trashy “Heyday” was an obvious if unsuccessful single – but “Unwritten Law” is brilliant and closest to that Joy Division comparison. Fans will love the non-album B-side “Brute Force” on CD at last – kicking like a mule too.

The remaster of “Winning” sees the bass pop out of the speakers as the Echo & The Bunnymen melody works its way into your subconscious (its even a little like early Icehouse). The drums and gangling guitars of “Skeletons” have muscle now - as does the rattling percussion intro to “New Dark Age” sounding like a jungle clarion call. I’m so reminded of Joe Jackson’s anger on “Possession” (“There’s a devil in me trying to show its face…”) and the sheer gloom of “Silent Air” haunts even now.

By the time it got to “All Fall Down” the misery had only slightly abated to allow something as poppy as “Party Of My Mind” – a great Eighties sound and there’s even tenderness in the moody guitar-chug of “Where The Love Is” (“I want to put that smile on your face…”). Side 2 opens with the delicacy of Max Mayers’ Keyboards on “Song And Dance” while the sophisticated “Calling The New Tune” shows real song maturity and a very definite nod towards Depeche Mode. “We Could Go Far” is superb – Indie yet Mainstream.

The live stuff is so much more powerful and exciting – the band lets rip – full of piss and vinegar – with the BBC boffins taping it properly and well. Pete Drummond introduces both sets to a wildly enthusiastic crowd – “Unwritten Law”, “Winning” and “Golden Soldiers” being highlights.

So why didn’t The Sound make it – too doomy – too bleeding miserable – probably. But its because they stuck to their ‘sound’ that they’ve engendered such cult status and real affection. And although the Joy Division comparisons are obvious - they deserve credit 'cause there’s a lot on here to love.

This is a genius reissue and a fan-pleasing offering – well done to all involved…

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