Side 2, Track 15:
Total Run Time: 60:00 minutes
The Stranglers: Strange Little Girl: 3 Minutes 34 Seconds: 1981
Well, I do love The Stranglers, and it was either this or ‘Golden Brown’ to finish off this mix tape, purely on the basis of length I had to go for ‘Strangle Little Girl’. I’m glad this one is done, it’s taken ages!
1. The Smiths – This Charming Man
The first time I saw the Smiths was on regional TV, it was a feature on them but was somehow rather tongue in cheek, as in, ‘look at this bunch of weirdos’. With Morrisey and his NHS hearing aid and glasses, waving daffodils around, I can see why, but I liked them straight away. They were different, and I like different.
2. Primal Scream – Ivy Ivy Ivy
It’s only just the 80’s but so what. I saw Primal Scream at the Assembly in Leamington Spa a couple of years ago when they performed the whole of Screamadelica and it was amazing. So they are in, had to be really.
3.The Stone Roses – Sally Cinnamon
The band hated the video that accompanies this track, they thought it cheap and, I believe, trashed the record company offices having seen it. This was early on in the life of The Stone Roses, 1987, and it was they’re second single.
4. Orange Juice – Rip It Up
Perhaps quite inexplicably in the context of this mix tape, jump back five years and you have this track, which to my mind fits quite nicely, but perhaps not everybody would agree.
5. Talking Heads – Burning Down The House
and right away here’s another addition, again from 1983, which was in my head as I recently bought a couple of Talking Heads vinyl albums, the one that this track was taken from isn’t one of them, but it will be, one of these days.
6.Tom Tom Club – Wordy Rappinghood
Honestly, I’ve no idea, I just always liked this track even though there was something about it that suggested I shouldn’t, but I did anyway. I’m sure I saw an official video for this once, when it was released, but I can’t seem to find it (33 years later!).
7. Thompson Twins – Hold Me Now
So things are, perhaps, getting a bit random at this point, but when I listen to the tracks back all together they seem to work for me, although maybe because I was there when they were new. I have mentioned before that I saw the Thompson Twins live, as a support act, and they put on quite an upbeat and lively show, I enjoyed it, though back in 1983 I probably didn’t appreciate it. They put out a lot of good pop songs but weren’t a success with the critics, which is a shame as they clearly had the knack of writing a good hook. In 1991, long after they had faded from the scene, they released a single “Come Inside” under the name ‘Feedback Max’, it reached No. 7 in the US Dance Chart and No. 1 in the UK Dance Chart. However, once it was discovered that the Thompson Twins were behind the record, sales dropped and the album it was taken from never had a UK release. Just goes to show that it isn’t all about the music.
8. ABC – Poison Arrow
‘The Lexicon Of Love’ is an incredibly good album, good songwriting, great production, and this single from it is a highlight. I really wasn’t listening to this sort of thing back in 1982, but even then I just couldn’t help but like it.
9. OMD – Enola Gay
This track should most definitely be filed under the category “People Are Stupid” as, when released, it was banned by the BBC. It is, of course, a song about the Hiroshima bombing but listeners assumed it was some sort of gay anthem. The track was banned from being played on popular BBC1 program Swap Shop for fear that it would serve as a corrupting sexual influence on children.
Also, check out the dancing in the video, it’s godawfull bad!
10. Gary Numan – I Die You Die
Well I’ve been waiting for a place to fit Gary Numan in to this mix tape and I think this is probably the best place. I could have gone Side 1 after or before Kraftwerk, but it seemed too obvious. So here we are, from Numan’s second (or 4th depending on how you are counting) studio album and a number 6 single in the UK, back when you had to sell crap loads to get into the charts.
11. Visage – Fade To Grey
I hated the video for this, it was pompous and pretentious, but the song, well, it was either just good or I heard it so many times that it burrowed into my subconscious and decided to set up home there.
12. David Bowie/Giorgio Moroder – Cat People
There are a lot of Bowie singles that I could have chosen but this one has always resonated with me for some reason. It may well not be the best choice, actually, it probably isn’t, but I’ve chosen it now and that’s that.
13. Martha & The Muffins – Echo Beach
Loved this when it was released and still love it now. It is probably the only track of theirs that most people know, but the album it’s taken from is pretty good, and they’ve made a few albums since.
Wiki: Echo Beach, as mentioned in the song, does not refer to a real beach but is rather a symbolic notion of somewhere the narrator would rather be, somewhere ‘far away in time’. In reality, the song was created while Gane was working checking wallpaper for printing faults. He found the work rather dull and his mind drifted to times he would like to live over again. One such time was an evening spent at Sunnyside Beach on the shoreline of Lake Ontario in Toronto in summer. In 1977, Echo Beach was a reference made to a faded time and place gone in the lyrics of the song “Hiroshima Mon Amour” by the band Ultravox.