IThe Shadowland: Kaleidoscope (Groove Tunnel) In case you need any further reassurance that the beat group never died. here come Penicuik‘s The Shadowland on their debut LP (or mini-LP). doffing the hat to every great garage group that ever humped a Hammond organ up six ﬂights of stairs. Listening to the record. you can almost see the distinctive Rickenbacker headstock waving about. But they haven‘t gone entirely for (10s fetishism. and. surprisingly. ‘The Love (iroove'. a respectable semi-baggy track. holds its own. Memorable songs aren't over-abundant here. but The Shadowland's energy and spirit is their saving grace. (Alastair Mabbott)
I Linton KwesiJohnson: Tings An‘ Times (Stern's) ln dub poetry. the late Michael Smith — like LKJ. produced by Dennis Bovell A was the cathartic. wire-taut chiller: l.KJ was cool. relaxed in delivery. clear in mind. He half-mumbled “Di Black Petty Booshwah' when others would shout from the rooftops ifthey came up with verses halfas good. He‘s been away a long time. but Johnson picks tip from where he left off without missing a beat. Musically. there's been no mad rUsh to make tip for lost time. although there is one African-styled track. which Bovell gets to give a dub treatment to at the end. LKJ ison form throughout. As in days of old. he doesn't hector or shout. but everything’s there. if you want to listen. (Alastair Mabbott)
I The Apples: Beautiful People (Epic) (‘olossally produced (at l i : on my Dansette. the neighbours still complained). the Edinburgh four‘s second 45 is a radio club-tricndly hotch-potchoftrip-dance insistence and choppy guitars. Vocals are still between Neil Tennant and EMF. beat again is solid: not dissimilar in tune and effect to the chart- scraping debut. 'Iiye Wonder'. which is both a compliment and a reCommendation. (l’Wl l)
I The Catherine Wheel: Painlul Thing EP(Wi|de) Not the Glasgow Wheel. but the best thing toleaye Norwich since the Al 1. and. judging by this engaging second EP. they get better. Shallow isthe strongest of the four eight-track recorded songs. but only by a short
‘l cymbal ride; tuneful
knayery full oftrippy
l i ;
harmonies. like the Byrds meet REM. in an epic shroud ofguitar textures and manic rhythms. One day. this band will be
T I La Toun People Are Still j Having Sex (Polydor) Yes.
well. Bit rude this one.
I Much moaning (i [a Li‘l
Louis‘ ‘French Kiss‘ and a slow house beat on the 12in. The BPMs are revved up for the 7in and fused with some sort of throaty anti-AIDS message. Definitely not
one for daytime radio. but 3
expect to hear it on every
danceﬂoor throughout the '
next couple ofmonths. (JI l)
I Slowdive: Holding Our Breath (Creation) A record
so fey it makes Lush sound
like Guns N‘Roses. Lots ofswirling guitar effects
and whispered vocals but absolutely no substance.
Even a cover of Syd
Barrett's ‘(iolden llair'. described as ‘cathedral-sounding'. can‘t lift this motley EP above the level ofhollow gesturing. (Jll)
I Carter USM: Sheriff Fafman (Big Cat) The Carter appeal is hard to
fathom. especially on record. but ‘Fatman‘.
rc-released ‘due to popular demand' no doubt. is perhaps one of their best. The brassy
key boards and admittedly quite amusing lyrics could almost be convincing. A word of warning: Buzzcocks fans should not. under any
circumstances. attempt to
play their version of fly ery body‘s I lappy Nowadays'. (Jll)
I Love And Money: My Love Lives In A Dead House (Fontana) The air of ‘this is your last chance to pay back your advance. Glasgow swine' hangs around this one. as it has for practically every Love And Money record since the first single. Strange. then. that it'sapretty uncommercial. low-key. slinky effort. with James Grunt whispering breathlessly all overit. I'm quite happy to have it around the house. but will it do the business? (AM)
I The Bachelor Pad: Meet The Lovely Jenny Brown (Egg) A tribute to the presenter of Scottish Books. As twee as they
; come these days. and
perhaps not as funny as they think it is. but it stands up as more than a novelty. Just. Neo- psychedelic weirdness on the B-side too. (AM)
I HitzerEbb: As ls(Mute) Combiningthe remixing talents ofJaz Coleman. Flood. Depcche Mode's Alan Wilder and Barry Adamson. this EPis Nitzer Ebb‘s first new material since last year‘s excellent Showtime album. Typically industrial and funky. this is dance music as strident and sexy as could he wished for. A Top ()f’l'lze Pops appearance is long overdue. (Jll) IThe Thieves: Rain (Lemo) Why. you might ask. should a virtually unknown band break a long silence with an oft-recorded Beatles cover? The answer is in the radio play ‘Rain‘ has already been rewarded with. As for theothcr three songs here — well. the one-time kid brothers you wished would go and play somewhere else. The Thieves are growing up and have made their first decent single. (AM)
I The Pearlfishers: Sacred EP (My Dark Star) ‘Sacred‘ itselfdisplays The Pearlfishers at their best. as they achieve a grittiness they can't live upto elsewhere: horns. a Hammond. a guitar solo to die for. and nicely produced. too. The rest show a band only marginally more
sophisticated than some of
their peers. and intent on dragging us back to a 70s some of us would rather forget happened. (AM)
I Primal Scream: Higher Than The Sun (Creation) Bobby Gillespie is tripping his face off. and so what'.’ lf he can‘t find any valuable insight to bring back with him. why should we be interested'.’ Taking it symbolically. after this peak experience what is there to look forward to but the comcdown — and when it comes. judging from the ecstatic bliss Gillespie's describing here. it's going to be gruesome. (AM)
I Thousand Yard Stare: Keepsake EP (Stifled
i Aardvark) Jesus. what a , disappointment. From a
group with one ofthe creepiest names around. a very prissy piece of pop indeed.So inconsequential that. in comparison. having a bowl of cereal seems as significant as the Industrial Revolution and the Boer War combined. We can walk into a pub on any night and hearthis kind ofstuff already --do we need interlopers from Slough too'.’ (AM )
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