Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Jane From Occupied Europe
Genres: Alternative Rock, Rock
Noisy and experimental, Britain's Swell Maps experienced little commercial success during the course of their chaotic career, but in hindsight they stand as one of the pivotal acts of the new wave: not only was the group a... more »
Noisy and experimental, Britain's Swell Maps experienced little commercial success during the course of their chaotic career, but in hindsight they stand as one of the pivotal acts of the new wave: not only was the group an acknowledged inspiration to the likes of Sonic Youth and Pavement, but their alumni ? most notably brothers Nikki Sudden and Epic Soundtracks ? continued on as key players in the underground music community. Although Sudden (vocals/guitar) and Soundtracks(piano/drums) formed the first incarnation of the Swell Maps as far back as 1972, the group did not begin to truly take shape until 1976, when the siblings enlisted bassist Jowe Head and guitarist Richard Earl. In the spirit of punk's "do-it-yourself" mentality, they formed their own label, Rather Records, and issued their debut single ? the brief, jarring Read About Seymour ? in the early weeks of 1978. Local media support soon won the group a distribution pact with ? but they did not resurface until over a year later with the single Dresden Style. In mid-1979, the Swell Maps released their full-length debut A Trip To Marineville, a crazy quilt of punk energy and Krautrock-influenced clatter. After the release of the speaker-shredding single "Let's Build A Car," the group recorded one final studio LP, Jane From Occupied Europe, before breaking up. Each of the members followed their own career paths, playing solo and forming bands: Sudden formed the Jacobites, Soundtracks joined Crime & The City Solution and Head played with the Television Personalities. Each disc contains bonus tracks not available on previous versions of these albums.
Michael Colin | London, UK | 11/30/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Yes, it seems like every reissue from some obscure band from 1980 seems to get the "gem" 5 star review, but this record is really something special. It is so loosely concocted, but it works incredibly well as a whole or just listening to individual tracks. The looseness seems very natural and unpretentious. Also, the energy of this group is completely contagious. Its an absolute must for anyone into the early eighties British thing but feels like the Fall don't rock hard enough and that Wire are too full of themselves....."
N. Wilson | Dallas TX | 10/29/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Prior to buying "Jane from Occupied Europe", I owned only their early singles "Read about Seymour" and "Let's Build A Car," which I felt were great songs but I didn't really understand all the critics referring to the band as "avant-garde," as their early singles were pretty straightforward punk - like a louder Fall.
But "Jane from Occupied Europe" is a truly great album, and now I plan to buy "A Trip From Marineville" because I like Swell Maps so much now. Parts of this album actually closely resemble no wave and krautrock, but it all feels much more melodic. Deep below all the feedback and hissing toy symphonies lie some truly excellent and abstract melodies. The energy level remains consistently high and the album is patchy in the best sense - although the songs are not of a consistent style, it all feels like a unified whole, in the same way Captain Beefheart's "Trout Mask Replica" does.
I'm so glad this was reissued because had it not been available, I probably would not have spent my time and money tracking it down. And I would have missed out on such an excellent album."