Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Various – Some Songs Side By Side (Stereo/Watts of Goodwill/RE:PEATER)

4 stars
So-called 'regional' album compilations were crucial statements of 
independence during the post-punk fall-out that briefly shook up the 
bone-idle London-centric record company hegemony. Snapshot documents of 
blink-and-you'll-miss-em scenes in Manchester, Liverpool, Sheffield, 
Brighton and other cities proliferated on shoestring DIY labels, which, 
politically, were as much about self-determination as music.

By collecting and selecting new material from eight Glasgow-based acts, 
this new collaboration between three of the city's micro-labels 
(including the debut release by venue Stereo) does something similar in 
capturing the here-and-nowness of a fecund and forever-changing 
independent musical landscape.

Tut Vu Vu, Palms, Organs of Love, Gummy Stumps, Sacred Paws, The Rosy 
Crucifixion, Muscles of Joy, Jacob Yates and the Pearly Gate Lock 
Pickers all present new work in an elaborate box set made up of two 12” 
vinyl LPs, a CD and a booklet featuring an essay by former Belle and 
Sebastian manager John Williamson, plus new artworks from the likes of 
David Shrigley and Richard Wright.

In execution, this more reflects the spirit of the Edinburgh-based Fast 
Product label's three Earcom compilations, released in 1979. Like them, 
this vital collection puts visual presentation to the fore in a way 
that demonstrates the umbilical links between art-forms that keep 
'local' scenes so vital.

The List, December 2012


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