Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Sense & Sensuality
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
With their edgy blend of post-punk, politics & funk, the Au Pairs were critics' favorites & cult heroes at the dawn of the 80s. This remixed reissue of their second & final album (originally released in 1982), accentuatin... more »
With their edgy blend of post-punk, politics & funk, the Au Pairs were critics' favorites & cult heroes at the dawn of the 80s. This remixed reissue of their second & final album (originally released in 1982), accentuating their dance floor potential, features sleeve-notes from guitarist Paul Foad. Especially remixed and digitally remastered from the original master tapes by the band. 2002.
Startlingly different than the original
Heidi M. Hawkins | Bellingham, WA: City of Subdued Excitement | 02/12/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I still have this recording on its original pristine vinyl. I was hooked in by the "remixed remastered" claim on the cover. I have heard plenty of recordings that made such claims but where the difference was negligible. This is not one of those, however. This recording sounds at times considerably different than the original mix. For one thing, the original recording was mastered at the wrong speed--too fast. This remastered (at the right speed) version is noticably slower. At first it sounded strange to my ears, as I have played that old vinyl many times. But, I do think the new mix is improved. The saxophones are much more in the forefront, the drum sounds are better, and the guitars are more audible. This is one instance where even if you have the original vinyl as I do, it is worth picking up the cd version that has been remixed and remastered. The difference is noteworthy and significant. Time will tell which mix I like better in the long run, but I suspect once I get used to this one I will prefer it.If you are not familiar with the Au Pairs, they sound similar to Gang of Four and deserve to be as famous. If you like the Raincoats, the Slits, the Delta 5, post-punk feminism, gender equality, or riot grrrl, then I suggest you check this band. "Playing with a Different Sex" is probably a better recording than this, but both are excellent."
Better than "Sex"
Michael Rudd | Norman, Oklahoma U.S.A. | 08/21/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you're curious enough to be checking out this album, then you're probably already aware of the formidable reputation of their debut "Playing with a Different Sex," a reputation that is bolstered by the rarity of that album. There's also a good chance you haven't heard it, since out-of-print copies of it rugularly sell for $30-$50 online. But beyond the hype, "Sense and Sensuality" is actually a much better album.
"PWADS" is a good record, but it lives largely in the shadow of Gang of Four's "Entertainment" and even "Solid Gold." While Lesley Woods as a frontwoman distinguishes the Au Pairs, musically they didn't expand too much upon the other band's sound.
On "Sense," the Au Pairs, and especially Woods, are much more adventurous and confident. They add saxophone and synthesizer to give the music more texture. The songs, while still funky, are more experimental in their composition. And, most of all, Woods's voice is deeply satisfying, sounding at once deeper than on the debut, but at the same time more strongly feminine.
Personally (I know many will disagree), I feel that with their sophomore effort, the Au Pairs surpassed the Gang of Four. While that band became increasingly more New Wave pop, the Au Pairs took more risks. But also, Woods adds so much not only with her voice, but also with her lyrics. The Gang of Four were quite heavy-handed, lyrically, propounding Marxism and railing against sex. The Au Pairs, on the other hand, are all about sex, but in the most positive, liberated way imaginable. The Gang of Four may have been anti-capitalist and anti-consumerist, but The Au Pairs are anti-control. They present a worldview in which everyone is free to express and enjoy themselves in complete freedom. Ultimately, that's much more interesting than someone telling me I'm a sheep because I enjoy sex."
Samuel Buzzelli | Bridgeville, PA | 04/21/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The Au Pairs have a quality to their music that is missing in its American counterparts. The use of instruments other than guitar, bass & drums and the occasional sax adds to the texture of the music. Their willingness to experiment with the music makes them an exceptional good example of what new wave/alt rock/punk is all about."