Sunday, 22 October 2017

Some edited highlights from her new album 'Never for ever' - Kate Bush

I have very few flexi discs in my collection, because usually they are not very interesting and/or very hard to play. But since Kate Bush is one of my biggest idols, I've always wanted to get my hand on this particular promotional flexi disc. I finally managed to find a copy in August when I bought the - also extremely rare - promotional CD-single of Kate Bush's 'Cloudbusting' from an American seller.

This flexi features extracts from three album tracks, 'Delius', 'Blow Away' and 'Egypt'.

My collection: 7" single no. 5857
Found: Discogs.com, August 2017
Cost: $5
Tracks: Some edited highlights from her new album 'Never for ever'

For America - Red Box

One of the best CD releases of recent years is undoubtedly Red Box's 'Plenty'. Red Box are better known, of course, from their Eighties hit 'For America'. This blog already featured the 7" single and the rare 10" single, so obviously the 12" single has to appear here too.

I've already had it for a couple of years, so it's one of those collection pieces that simply never made it to these pages yet. Perhaps because it features a rather strange 12" version. The 'Bazooka mix' - as it's called - was made by Red Box with Phil Harding.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: 2014
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'For America (Bazooka mix)' / 'Ain't got no... I got life', 'R 'n A'

Saturday, 21 October 2017

It's alright now - Beloved

The 7" single of  'It's alright now' was already in my possession for 20 years when I started hunting for the CD-single and 12" single. Having decided to hunt down remixes of the Beloved, there were a few surprises along the way. For instance: the CD-single of this track features the 'Back to basics instrumental' remix, whereas this 12" single features the 'Back to basics' version - i.e. with vocals. Both versions are very attractive.

This 12" single features three versions of the song, with only the first one also appearing on the CD-single. Worth owning this one, then!

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Discogs.com, received May 6, 2017
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'It's alright now (Rattling good time)' / 'It's alright now (Back to basics)', 'It's alright now (Feeling fine)'

Endless road - Time Bandits

The list of Time Bandits 12" singles continues with this remix of 'Endless road', released in 1985. This remix was created by Ben Liebrand, just like the prevous single Reach out. You will find that this remix is different from the one on the other 12" single of 'Endless road'.

On the B-side, the remix of 'I'm only shooting love' by Steve Thompson reappeared.


My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Velvet Vinyl Outlet, Leiden, July 14, 2017
Cost: 2,5 euro
Tracks: 'Endless road (High Energy Dance Mix by Ben Liebrand)' / 'I'm only shooting love (USA Re-mix by Steve Thompson)'

Thursday, 19 October 2017

Helden - David Bowie

When it was announced that the German magazine Rolling Stone would have a cover 7" single of David Bowie's 'Helden' in October, I despaired a little. It sounded like a great item to have, but it would probably be impossible to get a hold of it for a reasonable price, because of the collectability of such an item.

As it turned out, it wasn't so hard to get this single after all. The magazine was offered for sale on Ebay and it was simple enough to order a copy. The single brings together an '89 remix of 'Helden' and a live version taken from the album 'Stages'.

My collection: 7" single no. 5869
Found: Ebay, received October 19, 2017
Cost: 6 euro
Tracks: 'Helden ('89 remix)' / 'Heroes (live version)'

Right on - Zappo

You will recognise the track 'Right on', the A-side of this single, as the B-side of Yellow Bird's 'Attack Attack'. No, it's not a cover version: it's the exact same recording. So who is this Zappo person? Well, it's a nickname of Marty Wilde. On different pressings of this single he appears on the sleeve in a strange superhero suit - but since those singles are quite expensive I opted for this French pressing instead.

Most editions have 'Rock and roll crazy' (which is the B-side on this single) as the A-side. Like 'Right on', that song is written by Marty Wilde and Peter Shelley.

My collection: 7" single no. 5792
Found: Ebay, received February 10, 2017
Cost: 5 euro
Tracks: 'Right on' / 'Rock and roll crazy'

Attack attack - Yellow Bird

The band Yellow Bird only ever released one single. 'Attack Attack' was written and produced by Peter Shelley and Marty Wilde. The couple worked together intensively as songwriters and producers during the Seventies, while Marty was no longer successful as a pop star in his own right. In 1974, when this single was released, he was also trying to launch his son Ricky's career, but it would be Kim, his daughter, who would find success in the next decade.

Yellow Bird was a five man band, as you can see on the sleeve on this single, but I don't know who they are. The B-side is an instrumental track that you will also find on another single, soon on this blog...

My collection: 7" single no. 5790
Found: Ebay, February 10, 2017
Cost: 3 euro
Tracks: 'Attack attack' / 'Right on'

Your love takes me higher - Beloved

There are several 12" singles of the Beloved's 'Your love takes me higher' and this one must be one of the more interesting ones. It features two lengthy remixes of the track. Of these two, the 'Chillum Willum' version contains the most elements of the original songs, while the 'Calyx of Isis' version is an improvisation on a continuous beat, clocking in at almost 11 minutes.

I bought this 12" single online and it was filthy. I cleaned up the disc and it sounded a lot better - although the B-side is still a bit damaged at the end, unfortunately.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Discogs.com, received October 2016.
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'Your love takes me higher (Chillum Willum)' / 'Your love takes me higher (Calyx of Isis)'

Life - Matia Bazar

My favourite track by the Italian band Matia Bazar is 'Noi', which I have on 7" single and 12" single. I didn't know that they recorded this song in English, however. I found out because I spotted this 12" single in a shop, and because it was pressed on clear orange vinyl I suddenly had two good reasons to buy this disc.

As far as I can tell, there is no 7" single of 'Life', which seems strange. Anyway, this 12" single is a good package, because it also contains the extended and instrumental versions of 'Noi'. Three good tracks, then, on coloured vinyl. It doesn't get much better than this.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Velvet Vinyl Outlet, Leiden, January 16, 2015
Cost: 2,5 euro
Tracks: 'Life [extended]' / 'Noi [extended]', 'Noi (instrumental)'

Runaway / When I think of you - Janet Jackson

It's not the first time that I described Janet Jackson's 'Runaway' on this blog. I already have the 7" single, a promotional double 12" package and a double 12" single of 'Runaway' and 'When I think of you' remixes.

But still the double 12" package I found while shopping online a few months ago contained other remixes of 'Runaway' and 'When I think of you'. Do we really need that many versions of two songs? I'm not sure. I do quite like some of these remixes. At the same time I wonder why they were never released on cd....

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Discogs.com, received 16 August 2017
Cost: $4
Tracks: 'Runaway (Junior's Factory mix)', 'Runaway (Junior's Tribal dub mix)' / 'Runaway (Steve's "Silk" House mix)', 'Runaway (Torin's radio edit)' // 'Runaway (Junior's Factory dub)', 'Runaway (Junior's Factory Mix w/ vocal sample)' / 'When I think of you (Deep Dish Chocolate City mix)', 'When I think of you (Deep Dish Quite Storm dub)'

I´m only shooting love - Time Bandits

The American remix of the Time Bandits song 'I'm only shooting love' by Steve Thompson has become rather famous, and rightfully so, because it's a great remix.

However, when the single was originally released, the 12" single featured a rather different remix. It was an extended version of the single, much like many extended versions in the Eighties: a bit longer but not essentially different from the album version. And that's the kind of remix I like best. It's quite a shame they're not made like this anymore.



My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Velvet Vinyl Outlet, Leiden, July 14, 2017
Cost: 2,5 euro
Tracks: 'I'm only shooting love [extended]' / 'Only lovers will survive'

Friday, 13 October 2017

Ease the pressure - Beloved

The Beloved's third album 'X' was not a commercial success. Perhaps the audience was no longer interested in their brand of emotionally charged lyrics on pumping beats. I must admit that I had a hard time liking the album myself - it was only a few years ago when I made another attempt to like the package. But when I did, I really did.

Obviously I became interested in the remixes as well. And there were remixes aplenty. 'Ease the pressure', for instance, comes in a double 12" single package with no less than six remixes. It takes a bit of stamina to actually like them all, but there's something for everyone in this stack of tracks.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Discogs.com, August 2016
Cost: 2,5 pounds
Tracks: 'Ease the pressure (Club Vocal mix)' / 'Ease the pressure (Suction mix)', 'Ease the pressure (Motion sickness mix)' // 'Ease the pressure (Surge mix)', 'Ease the pressure (Backroom vocal mix)' / 'Ease the pressure (Switchback mix)'

Heroes - David Bowie

Parlophone started the '40 year anniversary' picture disc single releases a few years ago, when David Bowie was still alive. It's strange to think that this campaign will last well into the 2020s at least - and hopefully they will continue until 'No plan' is 40 years old (although I'm not holding my breath).

I skipped all the releases until now, but 'Heroes' was an attractive package. Not only did it come in a rather well designed A-side, but the B-side features a previously unreleased version of 'Heroes': as performed in the Marc Show on September 7, 1977. The recording is in mono, alas, but it's still worth a spin.

My collection: 7" single no. 5868
Found: Amazon.co.uk, received October 7, 2017
Cost: 10 pounds (which is outrageous, I know!)
Tracks: 'Heroes  [edit]' / 'Heroes (Marc Show version)'

I won't steal away - Time Bandits

I didn't actually like I won't steal away much when it came out, but in 2001 I actually bought the single. Tastes change, as they say. These days I think it's one of the band's better songs, so it's no surprise that when the opportunity came up to buy a stack of 12" singles, this was the one I picked up the quickest.

The extended remix was created by John Smit and Dan Hartman. The latter also produced this track - although you wouldn't need me to tell you that; it was advertised quite boldly on the sleeve of the disc.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Velvet Vinyl Outlet, Leiden, July 14, 2017
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'I won't steal away (extended remix)' / 'Cool world'

See that glow - This Island Earth

Once popular Eighties tune verging on the forgotten - and then the 12" single. That's really what I like. Some 12" singles were never released on cd, and this one is an example of that. I already owned the single for many years, when I found this disc. I was immediately curious.

'See that glow' only made it to cd once, and of course that was only the 7" version. This extended version, then, is a true exclusive for this blog. Try as you might, you will not find it online. Until now!

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Record Exchange, London
Cost: 10p
Tracks: 'See that glow [extended version]' / 'Fireflowers', 'See that glow (version)'

Sunday, 1 October 2017

F.L.M. - Mel & Kim

There are rumours that a new Mel & Kim release is on its way. Although many compilation albums have already seen the light of day, there are still tracks out there that have only been released on vinyl. I'm not sure if any of the tracks on this 12" single are still unreleased on CD, though. Almost every Mel & Kim track has been remixed to death - especially the singles of course.

F.L.M. was the third single from their debut album of the same name, and in Germany it came in a special multicoloured vinyl version.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: 2015
Cost: 2 euro
Tracks: 'F.L.M. (12")' / 'F.L.M. (club mix)', 'F.L.M. (dub mix)'

Dancing on a string - Time Bandits

Having bought a stack of Time Bandits 12" singles recently, you're bound to see more tracks of the band on this blog. This is the 12" single of 'Dancing on a string', the first of two in fact. I bought the single in 2010 and was pleasantly surprised - and this 12" extended mix continues that trend.

The remix was created by Ake Danielson, Kim Haworth and Ben Liebrand. The latter is of course well known for his many remixes for Dutch radio.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Velvet Vinyl Outlet, Leiden, July 14, 2017
Cost: 2,5 euro
Tracks: 'Dancing on a string (extended)' / 'Dancing on a string (instrumental)', 'I'm only shooting love (dub version)'

Sweet release - Trouser Enthusiasts

Along with the other 12" I bought last year, this one arrived. It's a second disc of remixes of the only track released by the Trouser Enthusiasts on their own, 'Sweet release'. There are many versions of this track, which shouldn't be surprising for an act that has always been deeply into dance remixes.

For some time, I have collected and compiled Trouser Enthusiasts remixes and I think it's a shame they don't make new remixes anymore. This 12" was a nice addition to my collection. The CD-single of this track is, unfortunately, much too expensive.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Discogs.com, received March 2015.
Cost: 2 pounds
Tracks: 'Sweet release (Friday Night Posse mix)' / 'Sweet release (Harry Hard mix)'

I can laugh about it now - Black

As described in this blog before, the single 'I can laugh about it now' was released in Spain only, in 1989, presumably as the fourth single from his album 'Comedy'. While the 7" single was very hard to find, the 12" single was even more so. It was only thanks to the indispensible website Discogs.com, where I had the disc on my wish list, that it suddenly popped up when someone offered it for sale. This happens occasionally, I guess, but this time I was quick enough to snap it up. (Ironically, there are three copies for sale right now - but they are more expensive.)

The 12" single adds a third track to the two already available on the 7" single, and it is 'Under wraps' - a track that would be released in the UK three years later when the single 'Fly up to the moon' was released. The history of that track is an interesting one, since it was already demo'd in the mid-Eighties. How it ended up being released in Spain first, I truly do not know.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Discogs.com, received July 2016
Cost: 12 euro
Tracks: 'I can laugh about it now' / 'All we need is the money [live]', 'Under wraps'


Way of the world - Max Q

The song 'Way of the world' by Max Q ended up in my singles collection pretty quickly, and it found its way into my blog eight years ago. A few years after the single, I bought the 12" single for just 50p in a record shop in London. I was pretty interested in remix versions of this song, and the price was of course a good incentive.

It would take a further few years to find the CD-single which I also own now. Since the CD-single contains the same tracks as this 12" single there's a good chance that I will get rid of this disc in due time. For now, it is still in my collection though.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Record Exchange, London
Cost: 50p
Tracks: 'Way of the world (12" mix)', 'Way of the world (7" mix)' / 'Zero-2-0 (Todd Terry mix)', 'Ghost of the year (Todd Terry mix)'

Saturday, 30 September 2017

Machinery - Propaganda

I can conclude my trilogy of Propaganda 12" singles today with this one, 'Machinery' from 1985. At the time of release I felt that this song was less strong and impressive than Duel, but three decades later it proves to have stood the test of time well. I'm incredibly fond of the Eighties 12" singles by ZTT anyway, because they were always so full of interesting extended remixes that were truly extended.

In this case, two versions of 'Machinery' are presented, and the 'Polish' version actually almost hits 10 minutes. You are probably tempted to disregard the B-side 'Frozen faces', but don't. It's a very interesting track.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Den Haag, 2014
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Machinery (Polish)' / 'Machinery (Passive)', 'Frozen faces'

Is there something I should know? - Duran Duran

The trick of Record Store Day for record companies is to get people to buy stuff they already have another time. Many different strategies are followed: exclusive tracks, posters, different formats, and of course... coloured vinyl.

In the case of 'Is there something I should know' by Duran Duran, which I already owned as a single, the coloured vinyl route was used in 2013. To celebrate the 30th anniversary of this song, EMI released this single on thick blue vinyl. I doubted for a little while but in the end I couldn't resist this one.

My collection: 7" single no. 5859
Found: Record Bag, Vienna, September 25, 2017
Cost: 10 euro
Tracks: 'Is there something I should know' / 'Faith in this colour'

All I want - Howard Jones

This single is an interesting one: a limited edition featuring a second disc, containing an interview with Howard Jones conducted by Paul Gambaccini. The other single of All I want that I have featured a booklet gatefold sleeve, so that was already a limited edition, and this one seems to be another one.

As far as I can tell, there's even another version of this single, featuring both discs and a gatefold sleeve. That one was released for promotional purposes only. The release of Howard Jones' 1986 singles was a feast of limited editions.

My collection: 7" single no. 1036a
Found: Discogs.com, received September 2017
Cost: 2 pounds
Tracks: 'All I want' / 'Roll right up' // 'Howard Jones interviewed by Paul Gambaccini (part 1)' / 'Howard Jones interviewed by Paul Gambaccini (part 2)'

Live it up - Time Bandits

It's not often that you find a shrink-wrapped 12" single from America from 35 years ago. But my recent order from Denmark gave me just this: a pristine copy of Time Bandits' debut single 'Live it up', remixed for the American market.

As mentioned before,  there were two different 12" singles. This one was released in 1982, whereas the other one was the original release in Europe in 1981. In the mean time, the remix became longer and better.

My collection: 12" single [unnumbered]
Found: Discogs.com, received 16 August 2017
Cost: $3
Tracks: Live it up (remix) / Juvenile acquiantance

Friday, 29 September 2017

Questo amore - Ricchi e Poveri

'Questo amore' ('This love') was the Italian entry in the Eurovision Song Contest 1978, performed by Ricchi e Poveri, at the time a quartet consisting of Franco Gatti, Angela Brambati, Angelo Sotgiu and Marina Occhiena. At the close of voting, the song received 53 points, placing 12th in a field of 20 competitors.

I bought this single in one of the strangest record shops I've had the pleasure to visit in Vienna this week. All of the singles cost more than 3 euros (most of them more than 5 euros) and the owners of the shop seemed more interested in their dog than they were in selling. I waited some time before I could pay, then left quickly. I'm not so fond of dogs.

My collection: 7" single no. 5864
Found: Sing Sing Records, Vienna, September 27, 2017
Cost: 3,5 euro
Tracks: 'Questo amore' / 'Anima'

Keeping the love alive - Air Supply

The band Air Supply rarely disappoint, if you like their music. It is almost formulaic but always melodious and catchy. They formed in Australia in 1975 and have included various accompanying musicians and singers.

'Keeping the love alive' was one of the band's lesser known singles, although it was released in Japan and achieved a top 10 status over there.

My collection: 7" single no. 5862
Found: Teuchtler records, Vienna, September 25, 2017
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Keeping the love alive' / 'Don't turn me away'

Do I have to - Inga Humpe

Inga Humpe (born January 13, 1956 in Hagen) is a German singer, composer and lyricist. With bands like Neonbabies, DÖF and Humpe & Humpe, she is one of the best-known musicians of the New Deutsche Welle. She is the younger sister of Annette Humpe.

Her solo career started in 1989 with the single 'Something Stupid'. A year later, she released this single, a cover of a Pet Shop Boys B-side. The single was taken from her only solo album 'Planet Oz', also released in 1990. These days she is active as a member of the band 2raumwohnung, together with Tommi Eckart.

My collection: 7" single no. 5866
Found: Moses Records, September 27, 2017
Cost: 3 euro
Tracks: 'Do I have to' / 'Falling (forward)'

Sold gold easy action - T Rex


'Solid Gold Easy Action' was released as a single in 1972 and reached No. 2 in the UK Singles Chart. While the song's musical style lies rooted in the Rock and roll of the 1950s, its lyrics are surrealistic and a typical example of Bolan's nonsense poetry. This song, like many of Bolan's hit singles, uses words such as "satisfaction" and "action". Combined with the rhythm and fast guitar strumming pattern on the song, Bolan creates an image of teenage sexual frustration.

Kerrang! magazine founder Geoff Barton, wrote in an article for Classic Rock magazine that the first two lines of the song, "Life is the same and it always will be / Easy as picking foxes from a tree", appeared to predict Marc Bolan's own death in 1977. The license plate of the car Bolan was in during the fatal collision with a tree was FOX 661L. This is one of many supposed 'prophesies' surrounding Marc Bolan's death.

My collection: 7" single no. 5863
Found: Teuchtler, Vienna, 25 September 2017
Cost: 4 euro
Tracks: 'Solid gold easy action' / 'Born to boogie'

In the heat of a passionate moment - Princess

Sometimes buying records involves a little luck as well as knowledge. I didn't recognise the sleeve of this single, a Princess release from 1986. But when I looked at my collection, of course, I already had a single called In the heat of a passionate moment. That one was the German release, featuring a remixed version of the single.

But this is the original single! And it doesn't contain the remix, but the original version. It sounds very much like a Stock/Aitken/Waterman production, like all of their output circa 1986. And a worthy addition to my singles collection.

My collection: 7" single no. 5865
Found: Moses Records, Vienna, September 27, 2017
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'In the heat of a passionate moment' / 'In the heat of a passionate moment (Garage mix)'

Working with fire and steel - China Crisis

Sometimes I like to upgrade my collection. Through the years I have bought many singles from Europe, whereas everyone knows that the UK pressings are much prettier. When I came across this mint copy of 'Working with fire and steel' by China Crisis, I thought it would be a much better one than the one I had.

When I came home, I found out that I didn't have this single at all! It's one of those omissions that you never really notice until you go search for it. Glad to have bought this single, then.

My collection: 7" single no. 5867
Found: Moses Records, Vienna, September 27, 2017
Cost: 1 euro
Tracks: 'Working with fire and steel' / 'Dockland', 'Forever I and I'

Love today - Mika

I don't know if anyone even remembers Mika these days. He was very popular when he released his debut album ten years ago, but I don't hear his name anymore. That's not to say that he stopped making music: his recent album 'No place in heaven' (2015) was pretty good, though perhaps not as good as 'The origin of love' (2012).

Anyway, I never bought the 7" singles from his debut album because they were only available for ridiculous prices. I was lucky enough to pick up the single Grace Kelly for just 2,5 euro seven years ago, and again this time, 'Love today' was there for me for just three euros. I wonder if, in time, I can find the other singles this cheap as well.

My collection: 7" single no. 5861
Found: Record Bag, Vienna
Cost: 3 euro
Tracks: 'Love today' / 'Stuck in the middle (acoustic)'

Turks Fruit - Rogier van Otterloo

It is kindof strange that as a Dutchman you need to go to Austria to find a single that was made by Dutch people and released mainly (but I guess not exclusively) for the Dutch version of Record Store Day. But here we are.

'Turks Fruit' is still the most popular movie ever made in the Netherlands, and not only for its scenes of gratuitous sex (although that helped, obviously). The music was also integral to the success of the movie. This single, pressed on clear red vinyl, features the two main themes of the movie. Central to the theme on the B-side is the harmonica played by Toots Thielemans, who passed away earlier this year. The music was originally released in 1973, whereas this single was released in 2016.

My collection: 7" single no. 5860
Found: Record Bag, Vienna
Cost: 12,90 euro
Tracks: 'Turks Fruit' / 'Dat Mistige Rooie Beest'

Take on me - A-ha

Ah... Record Store Day. The annual feast during which record companies release expensive products that are snapped up by people who actually have record stores in their neighbourhood - if the products they want are actually stocked by those stores.

The picture disc of 'Take on me' by A-ha eluded me until now, because Den Haag no longer has decent record shops anymore. I actually saw a copy in a store once but they asked 40 euros for it. 40 euros! I mean, seriously? Online these things cost less than half that - but the added postage makes it more expensive again. Which is why I was happy to find this copy during my trip to Vienna earlier this week. Sure, I still paid too much for it, but a chance like this never comes up again, I am sure. The single is special because of the picture disc, and the B-side, which is a live version from Dermot O'Leary's Saturday Sessions on BBC Radio 2 on 25 July 2009.

My collection: 7" single no. 5858
Found: Record Bag, Vienna
Cost: 19,90 euro
Tracks: 'Take on me' / 'Take on me (live)'

Listen to the song

Bad Boy - Freddie Starr

Marty Wilde's 'Bad Boy' has been covered a good many times, and some versions are more rare than others. I couldn't find Freddie Starr's version online, so there was nothing I could do except buy the single. These days you can buy singles online so easily, it only depends what you're prepared to pay for them. I try to be as selective as I can.

Freddie Starr, born 9 January 1943, was an English comedian who was previously the lead singer of the Merseybeat pop group the Midnighters. He released several solo albums during the 1970's and 1980's. 'Bad boy' was released in 1975, but it wasn't a hit. After the death of sex offender Jimmy Saville, Starr became one of the suspects but the Crown Prosecution Office decided not to bring charges on the grounds of 'insufficient evidence'. He lost a subsequent court case against his accuser, causing him to flee to an apartment in Spain.

My collection: 7" single no. 5857
Found: Discogs.com, received 21 September 2017.
Cost: 3 pounds
Tracks: 'Bad boy' / 'Only sixteen'

Listen to the song
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