Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Close to the Noise Floor

For the past week I've been listening to Cherry Red's recently released Close to the Noise Floor: Formative UK Electronica 1975-1984, an excellent 4CD compilation of UK minimal electronics. Obsessively listening I might add, effortlessly cycling thru the CDs, such is the high quality of the music. Thanks to the blogosphere, I've discovered a wellspring of terrific music from the DIY electro scene of the early 80's - music that was previously the preserve of ultra limited cassette releases has been resurrected and made available for the digital generation. So it's a real treat to have some of this great music remastered for CD. The tracklisting chosen by Richard Anderson swings from obscure bedroom composers to well-known heavy hitters - there's stuff from an edgy pre-Dare Human League, OMD in its infancy, John Foxx, Throbbing Gristle, Chris and Cosey, Colin Potter, and if there are the some omissions - Cabaret Voltaire, or a sampling from the great Thomas Leer/Robert Rental electro classic The Bridge, would have rounded out what is a near-definitive compilation - it's entirely forgivable. Complementing the music is the excellent packaging, the CDs come in an attractive digi-book which contains 48 pages of terrific context setting liner notes. And if I may add my own note here, Horror fans will enjoy Malcolm Brown's track Sedation Strokes which contains a sample of Teri McMinn's blood-curdling meat hook scream from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre which brilliantly mutates into a blast of free jazz...

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