Monday, 11 December 2017

The A.D. Music Chillout Mix #VII

We continue our mini series "The A.D. Music Chillout Mix", with the release of Edition VII


This show is a mix of chillout music by artists on the independant music record label A.D. Music, as well as a few bonus tracks from other artists.

Listen to the show on Mixcloud: https://www.mixcloud.com/whitelionradio/the-ad-music-chillout-mix-volume-vii/

The show is also available on Hearthis.at: https://hearthis.at/white-lion-radio-f7/the-ad-music-chillout-mix-vii-december-2017/

The Playlist:

Frank Borell - Piano Sky (Best Memories Mix)
Wunderfish - She Wanders Alone (Epilogue)
Sylvain Carel - Dance Of Flames
Ballademaker - Comfort Moment
Andy Pickford - Rise
Mike Oldfield - Sentinel (Single Restructure)
Frank Borell - Deep Moods (Yesterday Mix)
Lord Of The Ants - Exiled
Blue Chill - New Life (Secret Garden Piano Mix)
Glenn Main - Second Rendez-Vous
Sylvain Carel - Colours Of Light
Wunderfish - Through Painted Figures (Prologue) 2
Frank Borell - Beauty Lights (Sentimental Mix)

You can find out more about the artists featured on this show by visiting the official A.D. Music website:

https://www.admusicshop.com/

Friday, 8 December 2017

The Music Of Glenn Main

White Lion Radio are proud to present a special show for you called "The Music Of Glenn Main".


Glenn Main is from Norway and was born in 1969. He started to play piano when he was just 4 years old. When he was 13 years old he held his first "electronic" concert at his scool, and ever since electronic music has been his favorite genre.

Glenn is influenced by legends like Jean Michel Jarre, Klaus Shulze, Vangelis and Kitaro. He recently released an entire album of Jean Michel Jarre cover versions, approved by Jean Michel himself.

Glenn has played in lots of bands and is currently in the band Argh and he started his own recording studio in Oslo when he was 23 years old.

This show features tracks from his Jean Michel Jarre covers album, his Christmas album "Christmatronic", music recorded as a solo artist, as well as tracks with his band Argh.
Sit back and enjoy the wonderful music of a truly talented musician.

Find out more about Glenn and his music here: facebook.com/glenntronics

Listen to the show on Mixcloud here

Listen to the show on Hearthis.at here

Playlist for the show:

Argh - Dream A Dream
Glenn Main - Oxygene (Part 2)
Glenn Main - Into The Blue
Glenn Main - Souvernir De Chine
Glenn Main - Silent Night
Glenn Main - Deck The Hall
Glenn Main Ft Iselin Main - Rise To The Occasion
Glenn Main - Good King Wenceslas
Glenn Main - We Wish You A Merry Christmas
Glenn Main - Magnetic Fields (Part 2)
Glenn Main - Deep Within
Glenn Main - Oxygene (Part 4)
Argh - Wonderful Life

Thursday, 30 November 2017

White Lion Radio's Top 30 Classic Albums Of The 80s & Late 70s

So after a month looking back at classic albums released in the 80s and a few from the late 70s we have the definitive Top 30 Classic albums as rated by White Lion Radio.

A reminder how we arrived at these scores, every track on the albums rated as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). If albums are tied then they are rated by the number of tracks that got the top score of 3, if still level after that we count the number of tracks that got 2, sounds more complicated than the scoring system for the Eurovision Song Contest!! It's not believe me and it is an excellent way to accurately review an album.

Without further a do, here is our Top 30


1. Gary Numan - Telekon (83 Points)
2. Ultravox - Vienna (81 Points)
3. New Order - Power Corruption & Lies (79 Points)
4. OMD - Architecture & Morality (77 Points)
5. The Human League - Travelogue (77 Points)
6. Joy Division - Closer (77 Points)
7. Talk Talk - The Party's Over (77 Points)
8. The Human League - Dare (76 Points)
9. Tubeway Army - Replicas (76 Points)
10. Kraftwerk - Computer World (76 Points)
11. Depeche Mode - Speak & Spell (75 Points)
12. ABC - The Lexicon Of Love (73 Points)
13. Pet Shop Boys - Please (73 Points)
14. Yazoo - Upstairs At Eric's (70 Points)
15. Ultravox - Systems Of Romance (70 Points)
16. Heaven 17 - The Luxury Gap (70 Points)
17. A-Ha - Hunting High And Low (70 Points)
18. Duran Duran - Rio (70 Points)
19. Silicon Teens - Music For Parties (69 Points)
20. Erasure - Wonderland (69 Points)
21. Simple Minds - New Gold Dream (81,82,83,84) (67 Points)
22. John Foxx - Metamatic (66 Points)
23. China Crisis - Flaunt The Imperfection (66 Points)
24. Blancmange - Happy Families (66 Points)
25. Tears For Fears - The Hurting (63 Points)
26. Soft Cell - Non Stop Erotic Cabaret (63 Points)
27. David Bowie - Scary Monsters (60 Points)
28. Visage - Visage (60 Points)
29. Thompson Twins - Quick Step & Side Kick (53 Points)
30. Roxy Music - Avalon (50 Points)

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 30

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


So here we are with the final classic album, under the microscope, this month, on White Lion Radio. We finish this trip down memory lane with the Soft Cell album "Non Stop Erotic Cabaret".
What an enigma Soft Cell were, they recorded some truly classic tracks before they imploded and this album was a big favourite of mine when it was released, although there were tracks I wasn't keen on and we will come to those shortly.

I'm sure I don't need to tell you, that their breakthrough came with their cover version of "Tainted Love", I bought the 12 inch single and loved the way they mixed "Where Did Our Love Go" into "Tainted Love", the B Side, which was a dub version I never liked and still don't, listening to it, it makes me feel queasy!!!

"Tainted Love" is one of THE classic 80s tracks. It was released in the summer of 1981 and hit the top spot in the UK Singles chart.

The album was released in November 1981 as was the single "Bedsitter", my favourite Soft Cell song, pure brilliance, I also like the B Side "Facility Girls", again I bought the 12 inch single which is fantastic, with both tracks receiving the extended treatment. "Bedsitter" 12 Inch is my 2nd favourite 12 inch single of all time. Once again this did well in the charts and reached number 4 in the UK Singles Chart.

The final single released off the album, is probably the greatest ever synth ballad, "Say Hello Wave Goodbye", released in January 1982, again I went for the 12 inch version and to this day I am undecided about the 12 Inch Mix, but that takes nothing away from the fact that this is a superb track, which peaked at number 3 in the UK Singles Chart.

Back to the album, they definitely picked the best tracks as single releases, however, some of the other tracks haven't aged that well and I do find it a difficult album to listen too these days. I certainly liked it more in the 80s than I do now.

Our track recommendations for this album, are, not surprisingly, "Bedsitter", "Tainted Love" and "Say Hello Wave Goodbye", with a special mention for the track "Sex Dwarf", if there was one word to sum up that track, it would be "fun". There are 2 tracks on this album that I don't like, never have, and they are "Frustration" and "Seedy Films".

If you grew up in the 80s I'm sure you will have this album in your collection.

Our overall rating for this album is 63/100

I will post the Top 30 list shortly when I have compiled it  

The album is available from Amazon with bonus tracks for under £6 here

Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 29

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope, is "Upstairs At Eric's" by Yazoo. I was quite disappointed when Vince Clarke left Depeche Mode after the "Speak & Spell" album and was certainly intrigued, by what he intended to do next.

He formed Yazoo with Alison Moyet and their first single was "Only You" released in March 1982 and I bought it without hesitation and what a fantastic song it was. He apparently offered the track to Depeche Mode when he left the group as a gift! I'm so glad that didn't happen, it certainly showed how good he was/is at writing well crafted pop tunes.

"Only You" reached number 2 in the UK Singles chart in 1982, they follow up that classic with another brilliant synthpop dance track "Don't Go" in July 1982, the 12 Inch Version is one of my all time favourite 80s 12 inch singles. The track made number 3 in the UK Singles chart.

I couldn't wait to hear the album, at this time in my life I was living in a grubby bedsit and the only real possession I had was my record player, the album and the singles were played to death on it! What an album and a very important album for me at that time in my life.

The album was released in August 1982 and reached Number 2 in the UK Albums Chart, it deserved to get to number 1.

A third single was released off the album, "Situation", which was released in July, just before the album came out, but was only available in the United States and Canada, it soon became a popular import, I got the 12 Inch from HMV in Manchester, the money that place made out of me!

This album provided a big part of the soundtrack of my life, during the 80s and I was so disappointed that they were to make only one more album, I also love "You And Me Both", another superb album with a collection of wonderful Synthpop tunes.

To this day I consider Vince Clarke to be one of the greatest songwriters this country has ever seen, he is a genius.

Our track recommendations for this album, are, "Don't Go", "Only You", "Too Pieces", "Bad Connection" and "Goodbye 70s". There is only one track I dislike and that is the awful "I Before E Except After C", why that was included on the album I will never know, I think Vince was playing a practical joke on us!

An album that deserves the right to be called a "Classic", another timeless masterpiece, surely you have this album in your collection??

Our overall rating for this album is 70/100

The album is available from Amazon for just over £5 here

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 28

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope, is "Quick Step & Side Kick" by The Thompson Twins. I first heard the album at a friends house and really liked it, so I bought the album on cassette initially, as that included a wealth of bonus tracks. I always felt this band didn't get the recognition they deserved, despite some excellent releases in the 80s.

The first single to be released off the album was the track "Lies" in October 1982 and it didn't set the world on fire as it only reached number 67 in the UK Singles Chart. Their next single "love On Your Side", provided the big breakthrough for the band in the UK, where it reached the Top Ten in the Singles chart.

The album was released in February 1983 and was a big success, reaching number 2 in the UK Albums Chart, this was followed by the release of the brilliant single "We Are Detective", again taken off the album, it reached number 7 in the UK Singles Chart. The final single released off the album was "Watching", the album version featured some vocals by Grace Jones, but these were removed from the remixed single version. It only managed to break into the Top 40, making number 33 in the UK Singles chart.

This is one of those albums I play now and again these days as I find some of the songs a bit grating, however, there was no denying this was a unique and fun album when it first came out

Our track recommendations for this album, are, "We Are Detective", "Judy Do" and "Love On Your Side". Most tracks on this album got a score of 2, however, the tracks "Kamikazi" and "All Fall Out" I just don't like at all and scored 0.

Not quite a classic 80s album for me.

Our overall rating for this album is 53/100

The album is available as a 2CD Deluxe edition from Amazon for under £8 here

Monday, 27 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 27

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope, is "Travelogue" by The Human League, one of my favourite 80s albums.This album featured Mark I of The Human League when Martyn Ware & Ian Craig Marsh were in the band, it was the bands 2nd LP, the first being "Reproduction", whilst that had some obvious highlights, such as, "Empire State Human", "Blind Youth" and "The Path Of Least Resistance", for me "Travelogue" was on another level. It was like "Metamatic" by John Foxx, unlike anything I had heard before, produced with Synthesizers and Drum Machines, years ahead of it's time.

A girl I worked with in 1980 kept banging on about The Human League and borrowed me the original "Being Boiled" 7 Inch, now considered a collectors item, to be honest I didn't really know what to make of it, then they released the "Holiday '80 EP, which was a double 7 inch single, in February 1980 and I bought it. This included a re-recorded version of their debut single "Being Boiled", even this new version didn't appeal to me, however, I loved the tracks "Marianne" and "Dancevision". The EP only received moderate success, peaking at Number 56 in the UK Singles chart.

2 months later "Travelogue" was released, it exceeded my expectations by a long way and it was on heavy rotation, much to the annoyance of my parents!! Not long after this the band went their seperate ways, with Phil Oakey continuing under the name, The Human League, a bit strange as Martyn Ware formed the band, effectively he was sacked from his own band along with Ian Craig Marsh, of course they went on to have success, as Heaven 17.

The album reached number 16 on the UK Albums chart in 1980, no actual singles were released from the album, however, the brilliant "Only After Dark" was included as a free 7 inch single with the re-release of "Empire State Human".

Another interesting fact about this album, which I only learnt today, it was co-produced by Richard Mainwaring, who then went on to produce the OMD album "Architecture & Morality"!
This is one of my most played albums over the last 40 years or so, never grow tired of listening to it and it still sounds futuristic today, an amazing piece of work.

Our track recommendations for this album, are, "The Black Hit Of Space", "WXJL Tonight (My favourite track off the album)", "Only After Dark" and "The Touchables". As you would expect there are no tracks I dislike on this masterpiece.

Interestingly, this is also one of my brother's, favourite albums of all time.

You should definitely own a copy of this album!

Our overall rating for this album is 77/100

The album is available, with a wealth of bonus tracks for under £6 from Amazon here

Sunday, 26 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 26

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope, is "The Hurting" by Tears For Fears, which was released in March 1983, having bought the double 7 inch of "Mad World (to this day I can hear no difference between the standard 7 inch version of "Mad World" and the World Remix of "Mad World"!! Maybe someone can enlighten me!), I didn't hesitate to buy the album, my reaction to it was there were some brilliant tracks on the album but the quality fell short towards the end of it and I still have that
opinion today, "The Prisoner" and "Start Of The Breakdown" felt somewhat out of place.

The debut single was the track "Suffer The Children", released in November 1981, a remixed version appears on the album. I just love this track and it is easy to see why they got a record deal on the back of this track and "Pale Shelter". Amazingly it only reached number 52 in the UK Singles chart, it definitely deserved better! The original version of "Pale Shelter was released in March 1982 but failed to enter the UK Singles chart and things were looking bleak for the duo.

Then in September 1982 the breakthrough came, in the shape of the single "Mad World", a track I still rate as one of my all time favourite singles, it reached Number 3 on the UK Singles chart, the album quickly followed, and that reached number 1 on the UK Albums chart.

The album included a re-recorded/remixed version of the track "Pale Shelter", which they released as a single, another track I rate as one of my all time favourite singles. It reached number 5 in the UK Singles chart. The final single released off the album was "Change" another brilliant track and a great choice for a single, it was released in January 1983 and reached number 4 in the UK Singles chart.
Reflecting on the album now I think it is a mixed bag, probably because I hate the saxophone!, so tracks like "Ideas As Opiates" and "Memories Fade" don't stand a chance with me, on the flipside there are some truly excellent tracks, in addition to the singles, the tracks, "The Hurting" and "Watch Me Bleed" are very impressive.

Our track recommendations for this album, are, "Mad World", "Pale Shelter", "Suffer The Children", "Memories Fade" and "Change". There are 3 tracks I totally dislike and they are "Ideas As Opiates", "The Prisoner" and "Start Of The Breakdown".

The best bet is to make a compilation of the best tracks from this album along with the stand out tracks from the album "Songs From The Big Chair", do that and you have an album that would be perfect.

Our overall rating for this album is 63/100

The album is available from Amazon here

Saturday, 25 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 25

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope, is "New Gold Dream 81,82,83,84)" by Simple Minds. I had already been a big fan of Simple Minds from when they released the twin albums "Sons And Fascinations" and "Sister Feelings Call" both of which I bought when they came out in September 1981. Two really impressive albums but they were eclipsed by the brilliant "New Gold Dream" album that was released a year later in 1982. I played this vinyl album to death, surprisingly though, I never really took to the first single released from the album "Promised You A Miracle", which was released in April 1982, however the second single was a perfect choice, "Glittering Prize" was released a month before the album and blew me away when I first heard it. "Promised You A miracle" reached number 13 in the UK Singles Chart, whilst "Glittering Prize" surprisingly only reached number 16.
The final single released off the album was "Someone, Somewhere In Summertime", which came out in November 1982, for me one of Simple Minds best tracks alongside "Glittering Prize", disappointingly it only reached number 36 in the UK Singles chart.

Our track recommendations for this album, are, "Someone Somewhere In Summertime", "Glittering Prize" and "New Gold Dream". No major dislikes on this album for me, however, "Promised You A Miracle" and "Hunter And The Hunted" scored 1 point each.

This is THE Simple Minds album to have in your collection, I listen to it quite a lot and consider it an essential 80s classic album.

Our overall rating for this album is 67/100

The album is available from Amazon here

Friday, 24 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 24

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope, is a bit of a hidden gem from the 80s, it is the album "Music For Parties" by The Silicon Teens. Now this was a creation by Mute Records boss, Daniel Miller, the band was described as a 4 piece, members being, Darryl, Jacki, Paul & Diane, but they were fictional characters made up by Miller! They didn't exist!

The album "Music For Parties" was made up of rock and roll standards from the 50s and 60s given an upbeat synthpop makeover and done to great effect, also included were one or two original compositions. It was released in September 1980 and reached number 4 in the UK Indie Album chart, 3 singles were released from it, "Memphis Tennessee", "Judy In Disguise" and "Just Like Eddie", all of which were superb, with the last 2 singles reaching the Top 10 Indie Singles Chart.

I bought this when it came out as I had heard "Memphis Tennessee" on a compilation album and thought it was fun and catchy, the rest of the album was just as good, with some tracks even better than "Memphis Tennessee". I haven't heard an album like this one since 1980, it is essential to have in your collection, try listening to it without smiling and tapping your feet and singing along.....believe me it is impossible. Bonkers but brilliant!

There is so much to enjoy on this album and Our track recommendations are, "Memphis Tennessee", "Yesterday Man", "Doo-Wah-Diddy-Diddy", "Do You Love Me?", "Just Like Eddie" and "Red River Rock". There is only one track on the album I'm not keen on and that is the track "State Of Shock (Part 2)".

This album should be regarded as a national treasure, if you don't own it, treat yourself, you won't be disappointed.

Our overall rating for this album is 69/100

The album is available from Amazon here

Thursday, 23 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 23

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope, is "Avalon" by Roxy Music. Now Roxy Music I never really got into, one of the main reasons is because I loathe the saxophone, an instrument I have always hated and Roxy Music used it quite a lot on "Avalon" and "Flesh + Blood".

Prior to the album being released, "More Than This" was released as a single in April 1982, and reached number 6 in the UK Singles chart, this is a track I do like, despite the saxophone creeping in here and there.

The album was released in May 1982, when Roxy Music were at their height of fame. The album was a huge success and reached Number 1 all over Europe, including here in the UK, if I remember correctly I didn't buy this album for quite a while and actually bought "Flesh + Blood" at the same time, undoubtably their best albums.

In June 1982 they released the the title track as a single, another track I like, it reached number 13 in the UK Singles chart. The final single released off the album was the track "Take A Chance With Me", released in September 1982, which made the top 30 in the UK Singles chart, surprisingly, their last major chart success in the UK.

If I am honest, I rarely listen to either of the Roxy Music albums I own, some tracks have stood the test of time well, whilst others haven't, so it's an album I can take or leave.

Our track recommendations for this album, are a bit thin on the ground, and i would have to go for the singles "More Than This" and "Avalon". There is only one track on the album I really dislike and that is the track "Tara".

Our overall rating for this album is 50/100

The album is available from Amazon for just over £5 here

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 22

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope, is "Please" by Pet Shop Boys, one of my favourite bands of all time, just don't mention the album "Electric" to me!!

I bought "Please" on release day but didn't get the chance to play it when I got home, as I was going to a party in Blackpool, for some strange reason I took the LP with me, maybe I was hoping the DJ would play it for me or I was worried someone would pinch it!!

I liked the single "West End Girls", although I thought "Love Comes Quickly" was a strange choice as a single. I bought the album having heard just those 2 singles, they were the days when you could buy an album without hearing hardly anything from it, now with the internet, music is plastered everywhere, which has taken the fun out of buying music.

The album came out in March 1986 and reached number 3 in the UK Album chart, I thought it got to number 1, it certainly should have done! The single "West End Girls" reached number 1 in the UK Singles chart, whilst the follow up "Love Comes Quickly" only made number 19.

Following the release of the album they released the track "Opportunities (Let's Make Lots Of Money)" as a single in May 1986 and that track reached number 11, the 12 Inch is brilliant as is the B Side "Was That What It Was" (a track that should have been on the album). The last single released from the album was "Suburbia", it was a new version and it made number 8 in the UK Singles chart, personally I have never been to keen on that track.

Why tracks such as, "Tonight Is Forever" and "Why Don't We Live Together" weren't singles I will never know, vastly superior to "Love Comes Quickly" and "Suburbia".

Our track recommendations for this album are, "Opportunities (Lets Make Lots Of Money)", "Why Don't We Live Together" and "Tonight Is Forever". There are no tracks I dislike on this album, with "Love Comes Quickly" being the only track to score 1 point.

I have more Pet Shop Boys CD's and Vinyl in my music collection than any other artist. "Please" is a fantastic debut album, well worth digging out from time to time to listen too.
Our overall rating for this album is 73/100

The album is available from Amazone here

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 21

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope, is "Architecture & Morality" by OMD, arguably their finest ever album, although I have to say their new album "The Punishment Of Luxury" and previous album, "English Electric" would definitely give it a run for it's money. I remember going to see the band live at the Manchester Apollo on the A+M tour, I think this was the last tour their tape machine, Winston, graced the stage, he didn't behave himself, as Andy McCluskey announced that "this next track is called "The New Stone Age", the tape machine played the intro of "Georgia"!! OMD are the band I have seen most live and they always put on a good show and are one of those rare bands that connects so well with it's fan base.

Prior to the release of the album they released "Souvenir" as a single, which featured Paul Humphreys on lead vocals and is their highest charted single, when it made number 3 in the UK singles chart. A month before the album came out they released a second single from it called "Joan Of Arc",which made number 5 in the UK singles chart.

The album was then released in November 1981, to great critical acclaim, and it made number 3 in the UK album chart. Another single "Joan Of Arc (Maid Of Orleans)" was released in early 1982, which reached number 4 in the UK singles and made number 1 in both Holland and Germany, it is a track that features in most concerts they play and is loved by their fans, including me, because of the rousing drum patterns in the song, superb live!

They did release a 4th single "She's Leaving" in some parts of Europe but not in the UK.
Our track recommendations for this album are, "She's Leaving", "Souvenir" and "Joan Of Arc", "She's Leaving", "Joan Of Arc (Maid Of Orleans)", "The Beginning And The End" and "Sealand", this album features no less than 6 tracks that all got the maximum score of a 3. "The New Stone Age" is the only song that got a zero rating, i've never liked the track, and it seems totally out of place on this album.

A wonderful album that is always a pleasure to listen too.

Our overall rating for this album is 77/100

The album is available from Amazon for under £6 here

Monday, 20 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 20

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope, is "Vienna" by Ultravox, the debut album that featured Midge Ure on vocals, after he replaced the departed John Foxx. Now this album I was really looking forward to, as I did not know what to expect, I really didn't, the first single released was "Sleepwalk" (a very underrated single for me), this single has a unique place in my 7 inch vinyl single collection, it has the honour of being the most warped 7 inch single in my collection, by a long way, whenever I played it, it was like being on a rollercoaster, why I didn't take it back and get a replacement god only knows, but I don't think I have played the 7 inch much, since I bought it in 1980, for fear of damage to my record deck!

The single made number 29 in the UK singles chart.

Thankfully, the next single off the album I bought, "Passing Strangers" was in pristine condition. I always felt this was the wrong choice as a second single, they should have released "New Europeans", the fact it only made number 57 in the UK's singles chart would seem to back thoughts. Just when things were beginning to look bleak for the band, they released the title track as a single, which was a massive hit all over Europe and held the number 2 spot in the UK singles chart for 4 weeks (which might actually be a record??). It was prevented from reaching number 1 by a crap novelty record called "Shaddup Yer Face" by Joe Dolcie, one of the biggest travesties in popular music history! They made a superb video for the track as well. Ultravox were in the big time (I wonder what John Foxx made of it all?)

The final single released off the album was "All Stood Still", which also made the top 10 in the UK singles chart.

I've always loved the monochrome sleeve design for the album cover and for me it is one of my favourite album covers ever, very european, as was the music. A stunning album with quality from start to finish, I always enjoy listening to it, it still sounds ahead of it's time.

Our track recommendations for this album are, "New Europeans", "Private Lives" and "Sleepwalk" and "Vienna", I love every track on this album and the songs scored a 2 or 3.
Our overall rating for this album is 81/100

The album is available from Amazon here

The Electronic Music Hour #30

Welcome to edition #30 of our series "The Electronic Music Hour", which features some of the best electronic and synthpop music from the last 40 years.


These shows not only include well known artists from the last 4 decades but new and emerging bands on the electronic music scene from around the world, a lot of which are either unsigned, or on a small independent label, or self release their material.

So the shows will feature old and new tracks that fit in the electronic/synthpop genre.

Listen On Mixcloud

Listen On Hearthis.at

Playlist:

Ultravox - The Thin Wall (Single Version)
Heaven 17 - Let's All Make A Bomb
Deutsche Bank - Cities
OMD - Stay With Me
Metroland - Synthetic Sound (Seven Inch Alternate Version)
Epic Dreams - Hopeless Dreamer
Gary Numan - Love Needs No Disguise
Electro Spectre - Beautiful Lies
Kraftwerk - Metropolis
The Twins - I Died For You
John Foxx & The Maths - September Town
Marsheaux - Tonight
Pet Shop Boys - Flamboyant
Mr Jones Machine - Visions In Motion
New Musik - Living By Numbers

Sunday, 19 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 19

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope?, well following Joy Division, we have the New Order album "Power Corruption & Lies", which was released in May 1983. This was New Order's second album, the follow-up to the disappointing debut "Movement". Like so many of their early albums the album included no singles, that said "Age Of Consent" should definitely have been a single. Of course, the album did follow the release of the best selling 12 inch single of all time "Blue Monday".

This album came out at a very low point in my life, for reasons I won't bore you to death with and I always saw this as a positive upbeat album and a line in the track "Your Silent Face", "You Caught Me At A Bad Time, Why Don't You Piss Off" resonated with me quite a lot during this period! One of Bernards best lyrics without a doubt.

The album reached number 4 in the UK album chart and for me I see this album as the first proper New Order album and what an album it is. Heavy use of synths but with the trademeark Hooky basslines and Bernards guitar, one of their most electronic albums, which is what appeals to me. It has also stood the test of time really well and is probably the most played New Order album in my collection, and I have everything they have ever released, the same applies to Joy Division.

Our track recommendations for this album are, "Age Of Consent", "Your Silent Face" and "The Village", as with Joy Division's album "Closer", there are no tracks I dislike, all tracks scored 2 or higher. Another essential album you should have in your music collection.
Our overall rating for this album is 79/100

The album is available from Amazon here

Saturday, 18 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 18

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is "Closer" by Joy Division, an album I rate as one of my all time favourite albums.

I discovered Joy Division, via a local newspaper in Manchester, where I am from, they had an article about the lead singer of Manchester band Joy Division had taken his own life. I felt compelled to find out about their music and bought their debut album "Unknown Pleasures" without actually listening to any of their music!!

That was the start of my passion for Joy Division and of course New Order, as they subsequently became.

I bought the single "Love Will Tear Us Apart", which came out in June 1980, around that time I bumped into Anthony H Wilson (Factory Records) in Manchester, and got chatting to him about the new single and the band in general. the passion and belief he had in Joy Division was quite staggering and the chat we had, has stayed with me ever since. "Love Will Tear Us Apart" has become my favourite single of all time.

"Closer" was released in July 1980, 2 months after the death of Ian Curtis, the album cover was amazing, it was a picture of a family tomb, which I suspect had already been designed and signed off before Ian Curtis died, so it was quite fitting in the cicumstances, as for the music, well what can I say, it is an outsanding album, and when you listen to the lyrics, Curtis was definitely reaching out to people about his personal problems and trauma, yet nobody in the band realized this, until after his death and the release of the album.

No singles were released by the record company off the album and "Love Will Tear Us Apart" wasn't included either, but that doesn't mean the quality of the album was affected, by this time the band started using synthesizers and they were put to good use on tracks like "Isolation", "Decades" and "The Eternal"

The album reached number 6 in the UK album chart.

By the way if you haven't seen the film "Control", which is about the life of Ian Curtis is superb and highly recommended.

Our track recommendations for this album are, "Isolation", "Heart And Soul" and "The Eternal" and "Decades". As you would expect there are no tracks I dislike. In a word a masterpiece.

Our overall rating for this album is 77/100

The album is available from Amazon here

Friday, 17 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 17

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is "The Luxury Gap" by Heaven 17, a band I have admired for a long time, especially as a live outfit, they are a brilliant band live. Their output over the years has been disappointing, aside from their debut album "Penthouse & Pavement" and of course "The Luxury Gap" their albums have been very poor. Certainly "The Luxury Gap" is the essential Heaven 17 album. This was a superbly produced album with an orchestra, it cost a small fortune to make, so it was a good job it was a successful album!


The album was released in April 1983, some 5 months after the first single from the album "Let Me Go" was released, I bought it on 12 inch vinyl and still have it, that single, for me is their finest piece of work, that bassline......"The Luxury Gap" went on to sell 300,000 copies and made number 4 in the UK Album chart.

In all 5 singles were released from the album, including "We Live So Fast", which was released in the USA only, "Let Me Go", amazingly only made number 41 in the UK Singles chart, "Temptation" made number 2, "Come Live With Me" made number 5 and "Crushed By The Wheels Of Industry", made number 17.

"The Luxury Gap" is rightly regarded as a classic, it is a quality album and stood the test of time, and from interviews I have seen of Martyn & Glenn from the band they are a couple of warm hearted, friendly blokes.

Our track recommendations for this album are, "Let Me Go", "Come Live With Me" and "Temptation". All the tracks scored a 2 or a 3 except "Crushed By The Wheels Of Industry", which I loathe, it grates me everytime I hear it, for me should have been a B side and not on the album.

I was lucky enough to find the 3 disc deluxe edition, about a year or so ago, at HMV for £9.99, a bargain, if you can find that box set, definitely go for it.

This is the album that is as good as The Human League's "Dare" album and not the debut "Penthouse & Pavement", in my book.

Our overall rating for this album is 70/100

The album is available from Amazon here

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 16

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is "Rio" by Duran Duran. The album was released in 1982 and featured 4 singles.

A word of warning avoid the 2009 remaster as the sound is beyond terrible!!

I must admit I can take or leave Duran Duran, not my favourite band by a long way but they have released some fantastic tracks, i'm not sure they fully succeed when it comes to making a full album. I only like their first 3 albums, but credit where credit is due, "Rio" is a fantastic piece of work.
The album reached number 2 in the UK album chart in 1982, whilst the singles "My Own Way" reached number 14 in the UK singles chart, "Rio" made number 9, "Hungry Like The Wolf" made number 5 and "Save A Prayer" made Number 2.

Our track recommendations for this album are, "Hold Back The Rain", "Save A Prayer" and "Hungry Like The Wolf". On this album there are no tracks I dislike with only the track "Last Chance On The Stairway" scoring 1 point.

Probably the essential New Romantic LP to have in your collection.

Our overall rating for this album is 70/100

The album is available from Amazon here

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 15

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating.

This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is "Flaunt The Imperfection", by China Crisis. This was the bands 3rd album, and was released in 1985. It was produced by Walter Becker and marked a real change in the bands sound. China Crisis have always been underrated but when you look at their back catalogue they have released some stunning songs, such as, "Christian, "Wishful Thinking", "Black Man Ray", King In A Catholic Style (both of which appear on "Flaunt The Imperfection"), "Tragedy & Mystery", "Arizona Sky" and "Papua", just to name a few.

This was their most successful album, reaching number 9 in the UK Album chart and recently received the Deluxe Edition treatment along with their albums "Working With Fire & Steel" and "Difficult Shapes & Passive Rhythms", all of which are definitely worth getting.

I have always had a soft spot for China Crisis and it was pleasing to see the band release a critically acclaimed new album in 2015 called "Autumn In The Neighbourhood", another album worth investigating.

Back to "Flaunt The Imperfection", there were 4 singles released off this album "Black Man Ray", "King In A Catholic Style", "You Did Cut Me" and "The Highest High", the first two making the Top 20 in the UK Singles chart.

Our track recommendations for this album are, "Black Man Ray", "King In A Catholic Stle", "Blue Sea" and "Bigger The Punch I'm Feeling". There is just one track I dislike on the album and that is the track "The World Spins And I'm Part Of It".

If you haven't come across this band before do check them out, you just might be surprised.

Our overall rating for this album is 66/100

The album is available from Amazon here

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 14

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is "Hunting High And Low", the debut album by A-Ha, which was released in June 1985.

Without a doubt the video created for the single "Take On Me" is what made this album a success, if you haven't seen it, check it out on YouTube, it is fantastic. What is surprising is that it took until the 3rd re-release before it was a hit!

The reason I bought the album was because of the track "The Sun Always Shines On TV", a powerhouse synthpop/new wave track, to this day the track still has a certain something special, a superbly structured track. It is a wonderful album and the 4 disc deluxe edition released in 2015, is a must have, plenty of remixes, alternative versions, and demo's etc, one of the few box sets that really does deliver and provide value for money.

The album featured 5 singles "Take On Me", "The Sun Always Shines On TV", Train Of Thought" and the title track of the album "Hunting High And Low", all of which achieved chart success in the UK singles chart and charts around Europe."Love Is Reason" was also released as a single, but only in Norway.

What I like about this album is it is quite varied and certainly sees the band on fine form, their best album ever. as with quite a few albums I am reviewing and rating this has stood the test of time, 32 years old and still an essential listen.

Our track recommendations for this album are, "Take On Me", "The Sun Always Shines On TV", "Hunting High And Low" and "Love Is Reason". There are no tracks I dislike and only one track (I Dream Myself Alive) earning a score of 1 point.

Our overall rating for this album is 70/100

The album is available for under £5 from Amazon here

Monday, 13 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 13

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is "Wonderland", the debut album by Erasure. Now a lot of people think that "The Circus" was Erasure's first album, yes it was their breakthrough album on the back of the success of the single "Sometimes", but Before that we had this little gem, which was released in June 1986. It barely dented the UK album chart, reaching number 71, the album included 3 singles "Who Needs Love Like That", "Heavenly Action" and "Oh L'Amour", none of which troubled the UK singles chart.

I bought this album when it first came out, as I was a big fan of the work of Vince Clarke, and I still am. This album has some stunning tracks on it and certainly deserved better chart success and it is puzzling to me why it failed so badly. Personally I don't think the album "The Circus" is a patch on this album, I rarely play "The Circus", however, "Wonderland" gets played on a regular basis. I think the one problem with this album, is they chose the wrong tracks to be singles, with the exception of "Oh L'Amour".

If you like infectious Synthpop, like me, this album is essential to have in your collection and in my opinion, it certainly falls into the "Classic Albums" category.

Our track recommendations for this album are, "Reunion" (definitely should have been a single), "Cry So Easy" (another potential single)", "Oh L'Amour" and "My Heart ....So Blue".

There are no tracks I dislike as such, but the tracks "Push Me Shove Me", "Say What" and "Pistol" only scored 1 point each.

Our overall rating for this album is 69/100

The album is available as a 3 disc box set from Amazon here

Maximum 80s (Volume 54)

White Lion Radio have released Edition 54 of Maximum 80s.

This is a series of shows that feature nothing but the very best in 1980s 12 Inch Singles.

The biggest hits on the biggest format from a classic decade......the 1980s.


Listen On Mixcloud

Listen On Hearthis.at

Track List

Wham! - Everything She Wants (Remix)
Thompson Twins - The Gap (Club Remix Version)
Donna Summer - State Of Independence (New Bass Mix)
Kraftwerk - Computer Love (Original 12 Inch Version)
Malcolm McClaren - Double Dutch (New Dance Mix)
Nik Kershaw - Wouldn't It Be Good (Special Extended Mix)
The Associates - Club Country (12 Inch Mix)
Depeche Mode - Strangelove (Highjack Remix)
Echo & The Bunnymen - Lips Like Sugar (12 Inch Mix)
Holly Johnson - Americanos (P.W.L. Extended Version)

Sunday, 12 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 12

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is "Telekon" by Gary Numan, which was released in 1980 and may well be my favourite album of all time, but you will have to wait and see, until I put online the full list of 30 albums reviewed and rated.

The first concert I ever attended was a "Teletour" concert to promote the album "Telekon". I went to both shows at the Manchester Apollo on September 8th & 9th 1980 and was blown away by the stage set-up. He had 2 massive towers that 2 of the keyboard players were housed, it was, and still is one of the best stage designs I have ever seen at a concert.

Back to the album......

Prior to the album being released, Numan released the singles "We Are Glass" and "I Die:You Die", neither of which appeared on the album, "We Are Glass" I rate as one of Numan's best ever tracks. "Telekon" was released on September 5th 1980 and as usual I popped out of work during my morning break to buy the album from HMV in Manchester.

As soon as I got home I put the record on and loved it, to think he could produce a third album of such quality was amazing, he was on a roll, sadly though, the next few releases were well below par.
He only actually released one track as a single from the LP and that was "This Wreckage" (the track he opened the "Teletour" shows with), surprisingly the single only reached Number 20 in the UK Singles chart.

This is an album that has quality from start to finish, which I play on a regular basis, I still think it sounds futuristic, even though it is nearly 40 years old!
Our track recommendations for this album are, "I'm An Agent (should have been a single)", "I Dream Of Wires (this was originally planned to be a single)", "This Wreckage", "Please Push No More" and "The Aircrash Bureau".

There is not a single track on this album I rate below 2, which shows how good I think this album is.

Our overall rating for this album is 83/100

The album is available from Amazon here

Saturday, 11 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 11

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is the self titled debut by Visage. This was in effect a synthpop/new wave super group, consisting of Midge Ure (Ultravox & The Rich Kids), Rusty Egan (The Rich Kids), Steve Strange, Billy Currie (Ultravox), Dave Formula (Magazine), John McGeoch (Magazine) and Barry Adamson (Magazine). Their debut album was released in November 1980, which included the breakthough single "Fade To Grey", which reached number 8 in the UK Singles chart. The video for the track cost just £5,000 to make! It was money well spent.

This is an album I actually bought on the recommendation of a work collegue, she lent me their first single "Tar", which I liked but wasn't totally convinced about, but as the band featured 2 members of Ultravox I bought the album and wasn't disappointed. It reached number 13 in the UK Album chart.
They released 2 further singles from the album "Mind Of A Toy" (which reached number 13 in the UK singles chart) and my favourite track "Visage", the 12 inch is brilliant (the single made number 21 in the UK singles chart).

Our track recommendations for this album are, "Visage", "Fade To Grey", "Mind Of A Toy" and "Moon Over Moscow". The only track i'm not keen on is "The Steps".

Some tracks have aged better than others in my opinion, but it is still a great album.
Our overall rating for this album is 60/100

The album is available from Amazon for under £4 here

Friday, 10 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 10

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is "Speak And Spell" by Depeche Mode. I first heard Depeche Mode on one of my many daily visits to HMV in Manchester during my lunch hour, they played "New Life" and I thought it was brilliant, catchy as hell, I bought the single that day on 7 inch and 12 inch (12 inch was disappointing as it was hardly an extended version, just a few seconds of a drum intro added). They then released "Just Can't Get Enough" as a single on September 7th 1981 (I remember buying it the day it came out as It was a week before my brothers birthday) I bought both the 7 and 12 inch versions.

Both these singles, I have always felt, are fantastic examples of classic synthpop, what a genius Vince Clarke is, he wrote most of the "Speak And Spell" album, the man knows how to craft a melodic tune!

Amazingly I stumbled across the album in HMV (again!) and had no idea they had released it, I didn't think twice, I purchased a copy (on vinyl of course) straight away and couldn't wait to get home to play it. I remember listening to it and thought this is the best thing I have ever heard, virtually every track was a synthpop gem, I loved it and still do, it's another classic album I have on heavy rotation.

3 singles were released off the album "Dreaming Of Me (which only reached number 57 in the UK singles chart)", "New Life" (which reached number 4 in the UK singles chart) and "Just Can't Get Enough" (which reached number 8 in the UK singles chart), they could have released at least 3 more singles, as the album is that good. I also feel, that over the years, the song "New Life" hasn't got the credit it deserves.

The album reached number 10 in the UK albums chart in 1981.

Our track recommendations for this album are, "Just Can't Get Enough", "New Life", "Puppets", "What's Your Name" and "Photographic". Another brilliant album that doesn't disappoint and that has also aged very well, thanks in no small part, to the writing skills of Vince Clarke.
No tracks are a disappointment on this album
Our overall rating for this album is 75/100

The album is available from Amazon here

Thursday, 9 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 9

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is "Computer World" by Kraftwerk. As soon as Gary Numan mentioned Kraftwerk as a big influence I went out and bought "The Man Machine" (I had heard "Neon Lights" as the track was featured in an interview Numan had done with Simon Bates on Radio 1), that album blew me away and then bought "Autobahn" (I remember hearing the single version of "Autobahn" a few years earlier when it got into the UK singles chart, in 1975 and thought it was amazing), "Trans Europe Express" and "Radio-Activity".

From 1978 nothing new had appeared from Kraftwerk and I thought they must have called it a day, when out of the blue in an edition of the N.M.E music paper, in 1981, details appeared about a new single "Pocket Calculator" and a new album "Computer World". To say I was delighted was an understatement, I couldn't wait to hear the new material.

In the week the album was released Mark Radcliffe on his radio show, probably on Piccadilly Radio, in Manchester, he played tracks from the album and I was amazed, nothing like anything I had heard before, even more amazing was the fact they were singing about Home Computers, Online dating etc, now at that time there wasn't really any home computers as such, Kraftwerk were ahead of the game!

They released just the 2 singles off the album "Pocket Calculator" and "Computer Love", the latter had the track "The Model", taken from "The Man Machine" album, on the B side, DJ's started playing the B side more and more, so much so, the single was repressed with "The Model" as the A Side and "Computer Love" the B Side, it didn't take long for "The Model" to hit the top of the singles chart in the UK.

The band did a tour to promote this album and I attended my first Kraftwerk concert on June 15th 1981 at the Manchester Free Trade Hall, I was in row C to the left, right beneath where Ralf Hutter was positioned, the concert was brilliant, they transported their whole recording studio over from Dusseldorf as their stage set up!!

You have probably guessed from my memories posted here, this was an exciting time for me and for my love of electronic music.
Our track recommendations for this album are, "Pocket Calculator", "Computer World", "Computer Love" (my favourite track on the album) and "Home Computer". A brilliant album that doesn't disappoint.

Our overall rating for this album is 76/100

The album is available from Amazon here

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 8

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is "Happy Families" by Blancmange. Now Blancmange got my attention through the track "Sad Day", which was an istrumental track that was on the Some Bizarre" compilation that was released in 1981. The album featured bands that were unknown at that point, including, Depeche Mode, Soft Cell and The The. I love the track "Sad Day" and still regard it as one of the best synth based intrumentals that has ever been released.

Purely on the fondness I had for "Sad Day" I bought the 12 inch double A side single "God's Kitchen" and "I've Seen The Word", which was released in 1982. I was n't keen on "God's Kitchen" (I still don't like it!) but "I've Seen The Word" I thought, was an awesome track, and as soon as the album "Happy Families" was released I bought a vinyl copy of it. It is a good, solid album, with some wonderful tracks on it. A month after the album was released they released the single "Living On The Ceiling", the rest as they say, is history, an essential track for any 80s compilation.

They released 4 singles in all from "Happy Families", the double A side mentioned above, "Feel Me" (A brilliant but bonkers track!), ""Living On The Ceiling", of course, and a re-recorded version of "Waves", I have never understood why they re-recorded it with an orchestra, the original album version is far superior.

Our track recommendations for this album are, "Living On The Ceiling", "I've Seen The Word", the new album version of "Sad Day" and the original album version of "Waves". The only track I don't like is "God's Kitchen". It is an album that has actually aged quite well.

Our overall rating for this album is 66/100

The album is available as a 3CD Deluxe Edition from Amazon here

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated - Day 7

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is "The Lexicon Of Love" by ABC, which was released in June 1982 and reached number 1 in the UK album chart, that year. This Trevor Horn produced album, is a pop masterpiece.

I remember my brother buying the cassette tape of this album when we were on holiday in North Wales, with our parents, in the summer of '82 and we played it over and over again, we probably spent more money on batteries for the cassette player than was spent on the album!

In May 2016 ABC released a follow up to that classic album called "The Lexicon Of Love II", which is equal to, if not better, than the original album.

"The Lexicon Of Love" featured 4 singles, "Poison Arrow", which reached number 6 in the UK singles chart, "Tears Are Not Enough", which reached number 19 in the UK singles chart, "The Look Of Love", which reached number 4 in the UK singles chart and "All Of My Heart" (My favourite track on the album), which reached number 5 in the UK singles chart.

I still consider this album as an outstanding piece of work and I never grow tired of listening to it. If you love 80s music this album should definitely be in your collection.

Our track recommendations for this album are, "Many Happy returns", "The Look Of Love (Part1), "All Of My Heart" and "4 Ever 2 Gether". You won't be surprised to learn there are no tracks on the album I dislike.

Our overall rating for this album is 73/100

The album is available from Amazon for just over £5 here

Monday, 6 November 2017

Classic Albums Reviewed And Rated Day 6

Throughout this month we are going to take a look at albums regarded as classics from the 80s and one or two from the late 70s and give you our comments, and our rating of each album.

Each day, during November, we will focus on one album.

To rate the albums we rate each track on the album as either 3 (Outstanding), 2 (Good), 1 (ok) and 0 (Hate it). Those points are totalled up and then divided by the maximum points the album could get (EG 10 tracks would equal 30 points, 10 x 3). Then times the figure by 100 and that gives you your percentage rating. This is a very good indicator of how you rate an album.


Today's album under the microscope is "Systems Of Romance" by Ultravox, that was released in September 1978. This was the 3rd and final Ultravox album that featured John Foxx on vocals. The album failed to get the commercial success it deserved and seemed to mark the end of the band, as they were dropped by their record company. They of course went on to achieve success all over the world when Midge Ure joined the band as their new vocalist.

I bought this album on the strength of hearing the track "Slow Motion" that was played on a Radio 1 interview with Gary Numan shortly after "Replicas" was released.

The album features 2 singles, "Quiet Men", and following the success of the "new Ultravox" "Slow Motion" was also released as a single and made the top 40 in the UK singles chart.

This is an essential album you should have in your music collection and, it is clearly evident, that this album had a big influence on the Tubeway Army album "Replicas". Like "Replicas", "Systems Of Romance" makes excellent use of Synthesizers and guitar.

This is another one of those albums I play on a regular basis

Our track recommendations for this album are the 2 singles mentioned above, as well as, "Maximum Acceleration". There are no tracks on the album I dislike.

Our overall rating for this album is 70/100

The album is available from Amazon here