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Old 2017-09-09, 05:26 PM   #169
One with the Matrix
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Madness 'Absolutely' (1980)
Superb second album from the Los Palmas 7. As ever, its the album tracks that really show how great Madness are. The jolly singles are fun, but there's more interesting stuff to be found in the likes of 'Shadow Of Fear', 'Disappear' and 'In The Rain'. This fancy deluxe 2CD release also packs in 7 bonus tracks (B-Sides and single versions), plus the accompanying videos for the 3 singles ('Baggy Trousers', 'Embarrassment', 'The Return Of The Los Palmas 7') and a splendid live show from Hammersmith Odeon from 23/12/80. Being recorded by the BBC, the sound is fantastic and would make for a good release on its own merits.

Adam And The Ants 'Kings Of The Wild Frontier' (1980)
My 94th purchase of this album, here with the B-Sides from the singles, four demos and two rough cuts. This is easily Adam And The Ants' best album, so is deserving of the deluxe treatment, it's just a shame they've chucked in a live show that whilst, decent, feels like it's been recorded through Adam's mic and the rest of the band feel a bit squeezed out in the sound.

Alien Sex Fiend : Original Albums Collection (2015) 'Who's Been Sleeping In My Brain?' (1983)/ 'Acid Bath' (1984)/ 'Maximum Security' (1985)/ 'IT' (1986)
I've been after picking up Alien Sex Fiend's back catalogue for years now, having owned various 12" singles and a best-of from 1995 and found the easiest way is to go for this box-set (the first of two). Each album comes with some remixes, b-sides and - cheeringly - the Peel Sessions done at the time. Best of all, by getting this direct from the band, the sex came signed by Nik Fiend and Mrs Fiend

Of the four albums, 'IT' is definitely my favourite - it's a creepy, brooding piece of work which irons out some of the more indulgent, almost prog stylings of 'Maximum Security' (and album which does go on a bit). Debut 'WBSIMB?' is an exciting clatter of ideas and enthusiasm which sets out ASF's stall (its a weird stall, full of spoiled meat and objects at once strange and familiar) and 'Acid Bath' does more of the same.
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