Here we have the quite rare debut 7” single by Boston band The Eleventh Episode. An electronic new wave duo consisting of Tom Dube and J. McGill Winston.
“Excuses” is an electro-trance number with female spoken vocals that are from a CB radio transmission. Listen carefully, it quite humorous and inventive. “In Broken (Sometimes I Speak)” picks up the pace and provides synth melodies, double tracked vocals and guitar.
The 7” is packaged in an artwork adorned large thick envelope, which makes for a nice change from the standard packaging fare. Out of print private pressing via Playtime Records.
Malabolge was a post punk new wave band consisting of five members who hailed out of Southern, CA. The lead off track “Rain Comes Down”, which I would rate the stand out, starts with a subtle guitar bass line coupled with a haunting male vocal treatment. About halfway through the track suddenly picks up strength with a masterful female vocal, additional guitar sounds and well placed keyboard touches. The track “The Faster You Go” has a driving BPM rate and intense female vocals. Although it’s a quick four song affair here, it provides a pleasing listen. Out of print private pressing via Toi Bachs Records.
SIDE A rain comes down when you see her
SIDE B the faster you go just when you think you’re cool
Every now and then I get a pleasant surprise from my crate digging efforts, and this would be one of them. As soon as I put this obscurity on the turntable it caught my attention. The band was from Washington, DC and had a previous incarnation known as RJ/8. Their music combines perceptive social commentary with pleasing rhythms and intelligent arrangements. From the moody melodies of the title track, “Love And Industry”, to the compelling dance beats of “Dress For Sex”, the Senses Bureau show their ability to integrate diverse musical styles into their own individual sound. These six songs show a wide variety of influences, which range from Roxy Music to XTC to a mix of British progressive indie bands of the early – mid 80’s.
An innovating band lost in obscurity…A scarce out of print private pressing via EuroAmerican Records.
SIDE 1 dress for sex love and industry big brother
Here’s a self produced new wave synth record with virtually no info to be found. If someone knows something, please contact. This Canadian band consisted of five members who were from Windsor, Ontario. Faded Films successfully fuse their post punk roots with a new romantic style to create this haunting four song extended player. Their synthesizers are matched with a rush of acoustic and electric guitars, which results in an atmospheric infectious gem. A very rare and obscure vinyl that doesn’t seem to pop up often. Out of print private pressing via Faded Films.
Universal Musik Noise was a female fronted indie band that functioned out of San Francisco in the early-mid 80’s. The band consisted of six members, who centered their attention on their vocalist leader - Lela. It looks like the enterprising Lela even had her own record label, which issued this LP in a limited fashion. The band plays with edge and carries a post punk influence throughout. At times Schizophrenia holds true to name and runs through quirky experimentation tangents with over the top vocals, but all and all - it’s what you would expect from a private press independent offering. Some above par post punk highlights – “Our Land” and “Come Sleep With Me”….More information can be found on Discogs…An intriguing set of 11 songs…Out of print via Lela’s Lovely Label, San Francisco.
SIDE 1 think about it i’m old enough don’t lie to me our land broken song allein
SIDE 2 depression come sleep with me you get on my nerves out of my mind who do
Roomates were I assume three roommates that were all musically inclined in some form or fashion and decided to create this little obscure incarnation. They sound more like a mid 80’s alternative new wave outfit with lots of shimmering guitars, an emotive vocalist and a competent independent production. Guitar new wave rock sounds were very prevalent with the myriad of alternative bands in the 80’s…Roomates embraced this formula with success and add some of their own distinction along the way… A promising band that was overlooked for sure….Out of print, private pressing via Roadtrip Records..
Fans of slick female fronted synth wave should enjoy this unknown album that comes out of Seattle, WA. The band was a husband / wife duo with Janet Halvorson handling vocals, keyboards and Roger Halvorson on more keyboards, bass and OX programming. At first glance, one might think it’s some lame new age soundtrack from the looks of the under-whelming album jacket artwork, but not the case here… Their sound takes a more commercial approach in the vein of Berlin and Missing Persons - - providing a mix of up-tempo synth driven danceable beats augmented with melancholic mid paced tunes to round things out.
The infectious lead off “Heaven” sounds like a perfect mix of Dale Bozzio on vocals and a John Crawford Berlin synth pop production. Further into the LP it sounds like Terri Nunn’s twin sister takes over on vocals….The songs “Don’t Make Me Move” and “Dancing With You” could have been taken from the Berlin “Love Life” album sessions …This is an LP that I acquired many years ago and recently saw it for sale on eBAY, which prompted me to pull it out and throw it up on the turntable. …Being a fan of female led synth bands, this one will definitely get more spins in the near future…
If you’re looking for an obscure alternative to the more popular outings by the aforementioned groups - look no further…Out of print private pressing via Woodmont Records, Seattle, WA.
SIDE ONE heaven dancing with you a child’s song in the winter
SIDE TWO the question junior executive don’t make me move water from the moon
Ackee was a female fronted Dutch band formed in the early 80’s. This looks to be their one and only release, which can be found in the marketplace for modest prices. The group consisted of a duo – Scylla M. (vocals, guitar) and Bobby Bird (guitar, percussion). You get -> four 8 track recorded songs of funky new wave inspired percussion, chirpy female vocal treatments and solid strumming guitars. A most entertaining obscurity. Out of print private pressing via Cossack Records.
A very rare power pop new wave vinyl that has unfortunately lived in obscurity for quite some time. This one doesn’t seem to turn up too often and when it does it usually commands high prices. The band was from New Jersey and had a loyal following.
→ This blog will focus on private and independent releases that are out of print from the 1980s alternative music scenes - new wave - minimal synth - post punk - power pop - darkwave - electro - experimental - avant garde - coldwave - gothic - indie rock - industrial wave - All records are sourced from my personal collection, unless noted otherwise.
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