Saturday, August 24, 2019

The Bowling Balls [Belgium]

This band started out as a joke by a journalist named Billy Bertrand. The Bowling Balls was a band in a comic called "Germain Et Nous" that Bertrand created for a music magazine called "En Attendant". The popularity of the band who had a fake manager named Peyo and gave fake interviews for music magazines convinced Billy Bertrand (who may or may not have created the name "Plastic Bertrand") to start a real band. Their music was intentionally cheesy but they really did have talent. They released four singles and recorded a music video before Billy Bertrand committed suicide in New York in 1983.

The Bowling Balls - God Save the Night Fever 7" (1979)
A - God Save the Night Fever
B - Dreadlock'N'Lol (Chinese Reggae)

The Bowling Balls - Visco Video 7" (1980)
A - Visco Video
B - When You Walk in the Room

The Bowling Balls - The Boys 7" (1981)
A - The Boys
B1 - The Girls
B2 - Goys and Burls

The Bowling Balls - You Don't Know What it's Like to be Alone in the House 7" (1981)
A - You Don't Know What it's Like to be Alone in the House
B1 - R-Dance
B2 - Oh I Miss You

Billy Bertrand's journalistic talent is evident in the song "The Girls" where each line is subliminally a girl's name. Some are obvious but others are less so. Even the lyric "I'm looking for a single girl" is clever in its context.

I don't know all of the lyrics but here's what I pieced together. I will appreciate any suggestions that help me fill in the blanks.

I always grow so weak in the knees (Denise)
When I ring ringy the bell (Isabel)
I need some kind of release (Lisa)
Pull muscles from the shell (Michelle)*
I never say (?)
When I ain't got a Penny
She'd say that I can't cheat her (Conchita)
I want her for her money (Wanda)

All around me
I see beautiful girls
They don't look at me
I'd be happy with just one girl
I'm looking for a single girl

I'll travel down to Vienna
I'll find true love in Virginia
(???? something something the fairer?")
As long as I can Priscilla
I don't care if she's a deadbeat (Debbie)
Just need some heavy petting (Betty)

All around me
I see beautiful girls
They don't look at me
I'd be happy with just one girl
I'm looking for a single girl

All day long I watch TV (Stevie)
I really love I Love Lucy
I keep on counting the days (Daisy)
Someday I'll show my true aim (Amy)
I'll drink a whole litre (Alita)
Would I die for Diana?
When I kiss and I hold her (Holga)

All around me
I see beautiful girls
They don't look at me
I'd be happy with just one girl
I'm looking for a single girl

* "Pulling Muscles from the Shell"  is from the Squeeze song that was released that same year.

Either YouTube or Blogger isn't letting me post the only video they made. It's for the song "You don't Know What it's Like to be Alone in the House" but you can see it HERE.

DOWNLOAD all four singles

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Writz - Writz (1979)

I think I have all of the Writz singles. I'm not sure - I'll have to check. But I do have their only album. The reason I'm posting this is because band leader Steve Fairnie has been in many bands and has put out lots of music but right after Writz he started a band called Famous Names that was basically the same band members as Writz. They had two official 7" releases that I think I have but I'm not sure - I'll have to check. As you can see HERE they recorded an album that was never released. That's why I'm making this post. Here is a crappy rip of that unreleased album by the Famous Names called "Venitian Blinds".

Writz - Writz (1979)
1 Night Nurse
2 Luxury
3 Swinging with the Reptiles
4 Drive Away
5 Super Heroes
6 Movies
7 Robberoni
8 Private Lives
9 TV Times
10 Muscle Culture

Famous Names - Venetian Blinds (1981)
1 Muscle Culture II
2 Observation
3 Techno Refugee
4 Blind Girl
5 Jack's Party
6 Change
7 Venetian Blinds
8 Dance On
9 Boy
10 Pain


Sunday, July 14, 2019

The X.L. Band - Ronnie's Big Bomb 7" (1985)

Probably the only  thing released by this English mod/ska band.

A - Ronnie's Big Bomb
B - You Can't Win

Hear "Ronnie's Big Bomb"


Sunday, June 30, 2019

Slick - Father Napalm (1985)

This is a rare and highly sought-after release from a studio-only California band.

1 Father Napalm
2 Jeans to Jeans
3 Gutter Trash
4 South Blackstone Street
5 Last Rhapsody
6 A.K.M.

Listen to "Gutter Trash".


Saturday, June 15, 2019

The Pictures

The Pictures was a British band who released very little.

I first heard of them from the Unicorn Record's 7" compilation "The Phase III Mod Bands" song "My Home Town" which, for me, stood out above all of the other songs and bands in that series. I tried tracking down anything else they might have released and only found three other songs: "Down My Street" from a limited flexi they did with the band The Off Beats (I have their album as well. I'll post it if anybody gives a good-God-damn), the song "Don't Leave Me" from the compilation "Diverse...if Nothing Else" from 1986 which also included songs from The Risk and The Gents, and "Strange Thing" from the Unicorn comp "Unicorn One...Beyond Tomorrow" from 1987.

Then I struck gold when I found a copy of this tape. I have to wonder how many copies of this gem actually exists. There are only four songs and two of them were previously released. The two that I didn't already have were amazing and I must admit that I'm confused why these weren't the ones the band promoted.

Hear "Catch 22" from the demo tape.

Anyway, here is (what I believe) every song this band ever recorded:

The Pictures demo tape (1986 - or 1987)
1 Pictures
2 Down My Street
3 Catch 22
4 Don't Leave Me
 *Down My Street (from the vinyl - crackles galore, but no tape hiss - same version but this was included for comparison)
*My Home Town
* Strange Thing


Saturday, June 8, 2019

The Pin-Ups - Take One (1981)

1 Write it on the Walls
2 Can't Get Enough
3 Pin-Up
4 Confession
5 Only for Fun
6 Stranglers
7 Lies
8 Anarchy or Cake
9 Not Alone
10 The Candle
11 Snowman
12 Boys Dressed Up as Girls
13 Music for Cure
14 Lies, Too

Listen to "Write it on the Walls"

Listen to "Anarchy or Cake"

Listen to "Music for Cure"


Wednesday, June 5, 2019

EMS - EMS 12" EP (1984)

This was a short-lived band from Southern California that only ever released this one EP. It has become a collectors item because it features vocalist Rebecca Hamm who went on to become a recognized visual artist and teacher.

HERE is her website.

A1 - Is it that Time Again?
A2 - Breakin' All the Rules
B1 - Having a Good Time
B2 - Not to Blame

Listen to "Not to Blame"


Saturday, June 1, 2019

8 Halbe - Feed the Krauts (1987)

Somebody told me that, based on the 'kind of music that I listen to' I would love this record.
Maybe I should have asked what 'kind' of music they think I listen to before I bought this record.
Hopefully one of you will like it.

1 Fall in Love
2 No Hiding
3 Jimmy be Free
4 Fette Weiber
5 Five Minutes
6 Semen (The Bonnie Bells of Tubingham)
7 Nachts um Halb Drei
8 Seemann
9 Gone Away
10 La La La
11 It Could be You
12 Haey You
13 Sent Me Free

Listen to "Fall in Love"

Listen to "Five Minutes"


Sunday, May 26, 2019

Sandglow Marinas - Gone to China 7" (1983)

This is a British synth group that didn't release anything else but this one single with the exception of their song "Power of TV" that was on the first Tyger Annual compilation.

"Power of TV" is, by far, my favorite song from that compilation and I had to seek out anything else they did which ends here.  Neither song on this records holds a candle to Power of TV but both are likeable new wave tunes.

I included Power of TV with this download so you can compare yourself.

[YouTube is not letting me embed right now but you can hear Power of TV HERE.]

A - Gone to China
B - Sue of Harrow
* - Power of TV