All posts tagged: OMD


THINKING INSIDE THE BOX SET: Cherry Red Producers Tell All

  Long before Prince’s death, fans were wildly discussing if and when the vast contents of his audio library – the legendary vault – would be officially released. While former labels, associates, band members and distant relatives jockey for position as the estate ambles through probate, one can only hope they archive, release and celebrate his work as well as London’s Cherry Red Records has been doing for years in a wide variety of musical arenas. Box Sets are nothing new; from the bloated “scrape the archives” cash-ins that just about every major artist puts under the Christmas tree to focused niche sets like Nuggets and Children of Nuggets. Cherry Red has been digging gold out of the 1970s and 1980s alternative underground they way Nuggets celebrated psychedelia. A few years ago, they released the stunning 5CD set, Scared to Get Happy: A Story of Indie Pop 1980-1989. The set brilliantly restored more than 100 tracks that in many cases were never issued on CD or digital platforms, or if they were, they weren’t prominent …

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The 13 Best Pop and Rock Albums of 2013, What Are Yours?

More than 70,000 albums likely hit the market this year — along with just as many year-end “Best Of” lists. While word “best” is subjective at best, here are the discs that got the most plays and yielded the most enjoyment on my stereo in the past 12 months. Discover an album or two for yourself and if you’re so inclined, share your Top 13 in the comments section. Prices — where mentioned — were sale prices current the moment I first published this — not guaranteed to last — get em now! #1: Charli XCX • True Romance Stunning. Majestic. Dark. Sexy. Romantic. And that’s just the cover art. True Romance is a spectacular journey through the young heart. Charlotte Aitchison wears her heart on her sleeve and her feet in 8-inch platform boots. Her sensuous voice echoes Siouxsie Sioux, Nina Hagen and Grace Jones. Her slithering synth beds nod to Lena Lovich, Book of Love, Moby and the Pet Shop Boys. How she came this far from the dozen or so dicey singles …

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13 Digital Album Deals For Cash Strapped Hipsters

Tis almost the season for giving, so before you trek out to the malls to take care of your loved ones, why not give yourself a little treat? Now this piece might seem like a shameless flogging of Amazon MP3, but why the hell not? I’m sick of queuing up in the cold on Record Store Day only to get elbowed in the eye from an eBay goon who doesn’t know his Yo La Tengo from his Sebadoh. Non-RSD days have been equally depressing, and it’s not the stores’ fault. Most regular CD releases have been reduced to disposable “eco paks” with little to no artwork or liner notes. Anything worth owning in the physical form is now a Super Deluxe Edition that comes with its own financing plan. Now I love my Mac and my iPhone and my Ashton Kutcher as Steve Jobs screensaver, but my love for all things Apple stops at iTunes. You don’t buy music from them so much as rent it and if you make the slightest change to your …


10 Most Awesome 80’s New Wave Comebacks Ever

Ready for an excellent adventure? Fire up the Delorean, pad your shoulders, grab a turbo dog and bag of corn nuts, we’re about to bend the polyester fabric of space and time. Can music sound totally retro and modern at the same time? Let’s find out. Sadly, many of the best new wave acts of the 80’s fell victim to the same old song and safety dance: Score some hits, disappear for a while and then cash in on the nostalgia circuit playing weathered versions of the classics to an audience of beer guts, soccer moms and bewildered kids. Call it a miracle, but New Wave is currently experiencing a Second Wave — three decades since the launch of MTV and the height of Richard Blade, these 11 iconic acts are currently cranking out some of the best music of their careers. While the Human League (Credo), David Bowie (The Next Day) and Ultravox (Brilliant) missed it by “thaaaaat much”, these bands magically returned to form in the 2000’s: #1. Duran Duran Key Personnel: Simon …


Like, Omigod! Digging Through the ’80s Pop Culture Box, Part 25

This week marks the true beginning of the end. At last, we have reached the final disc of this seven-disc compilation. There will be time for sober reflection later; for now, let’s plunge right ahead with the smack-talk, the petty sniping, the pointless bickering and the Mom jokes! (Yeah, we know what you like.) #1 Bananarama, “Venus” (1986) A cover of the song by the Shocking Blue. A #1 in the US, Canada, Australia, NZ, South Africa, and Switzerland – though it only hit #8 in the UK. Jack Feerick – This marks our second altercation with the UK production team of Stock, Aitken and Waterman, who sent seemingly dozens of dance-poppers to the top of the charts, none of whom you would later be able to pick out of a police line-up. Rick Astley is probably their most notorious creation. But unlike the studio tea-boy that the trio transformed into a pop idol on a bet (or so the legend goes), Bananarama had a career before SAW got hold of them, doing quirky, slightly …

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OMG! NEW OMD! ON CD. In 2013!

It’s hard to believe the original incarnation of Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark (Andy McCluskey, Paul Humphreys, Malcolm Holmes and Martin Cooper) has been back together for close to eight years. If they blew apart again after 2010’s winning History of Modern album, that would have been a triumphant end to one of the new wave era’s most enduring bands. And yet, here we go again. OMD’s new album, English Electric, will be released on April 8th on CD, deluxe CD+DVD, heavyweight vinyl LP, collectors’ tin boxset and on digital platforms. From the sounds of the first released track — a throwaway instrumental segue called “Digital” — they are diving deeper into their early sound. This track would have been a good fit on Architecture and Morality or even their earliest live performance art EP (produced by nuh nuh nuh 19’s Paul Hardcastle). English Electric tracklist: Please Remain Seated Metroland Night Café The Future Will Be Silent Helen of Troy Our System Kissing The Machine Decimal Stay With Me Dresden Atomic Ranch Final Song The first …

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Download Now: J.P. Rose “What If I Were You?”

J.P. Rose gave up the blustery winds of San Francisco, where he fronted electro/pop outfit Hot Challenge, for the sunny shores of Los Angeles. The easy, breezy, beautiful LA weather informs the instantly addictive tracks on his new EP, Seascape. For older folk like me, Rose’s brand of electro/pop immediately recalls OMD and the Lightning Seeds. The younger kids can easily slip Rose’s tracks into mixes packed with Owl City, Justice and the Postal Service. JP Rose – What If I Were You is particularly epic with cascading waves of synth and a yearning chorus. This one is a major hit just waiting to happen. JP Rose – Back To Me is the first single and it’s video (directed by J.P.’s brother David) is no walk in the park. No wait, that’s exactly what it is. And what better way to while away the day than by strolling with lovely blonde supermodel Lina O’Connor? Listen to J.P. Rose on soundcloud and connect with him on facebook.  

Popdose 2010: Will Harris’s Top Albums and Songs

I don’t even know why I’m here, frankly. I think it’s pretty well documented that all I do these days is write about television and interview people for Bullz-Eye ’til the cows come home. I’ve barely had time to write my columns for Popdose. (In case you’ve forgotten, “Hooks ‘N’ You” and “You’re the Voice” are mine.) Once upon a time, though, I used to be a music critic, dammit…and once you’ve had opinions about music, you’ll always have opinions about music. As such, here are my thoughts on the albums and songs that grabbed me this year. This may be the first time I’ve actually written about most of them, but you can damn well be sure that I’ve spent plenty of time listening to them. Favorite Albums 1. Tom Jones: Praise & Blame It’s a pretty consistent tradition that my #1 slot on my Best Albums list of any given year belongs to an artist whose career I’ve followed for quite some time, but Sir Tom earned his spot fair and square. Kicking …

Chartburn: 8/01/08

Mainstream Rock: Mike + the Mechanics, “Silent Running” (1985) David Medsker: I love Paul Carrack as much as the next guy, but is what I refer to as a non-song. Not a whole lot of meat on these bones. Jeff Giles: An odd little hit from an odd little record. People remember Paul Carrack and Paul Young (no, the other Paul Young) as Mike +/& the Mechanics’ singers, but this album featured lead vocals from two other guys. I can’t remember either of their names, but I do remember that I like “Taken In” more than “Silent Running” or “All I Need Is a Miracle.” Jon Cummings: If I remember correctly, M+M albums were packaged with drool cups. Or did I just dream that during the 48-hour nap that was induced by my one and only full hearing of this song? Even 23 years on, it’s extraordinary that a nuclear war/Terminator/whatever prog-rock “epic” could be so abysmally boring. (Compared to this oblique blather, Sting’s contemporaneous “Russians” was a Tolstoy …

Jesus of Cool: John Hughes, Sixteen Candles, and a Kiss…of Death

If you were a GenXer coming of age in the 1980s, moviegoing meant heavy doses of Harrison Ford, too much Tom Cruise, an occasional journey into the unhinged eraserhead of David Lynch…and multitudes of Molly Ringwald. John Hughes’ hugely successful teen flicks were hit-and-miss in quality — with the exception of Sixteen Candles and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, they all play better in the memory than they do in real time. Still, without them we might never have grown to loathe the Brat Pack — and Hughes did manage to give some early-career screen time to several young people who went on to more interesting acting careers (John Cusack, Alan Ruck and Gina Gershon, to name a few).