Thursday, August 24, 2006

Further Remastered Madness!

Yes, it's one more day of remastered goodies this week. Recent purchases have included a couple of the early Ultravox records - second album Ultravox! and it's follow up Systems Of Romance. This is the band pre-Midge Ure pomposity. 1977 to be precise. The band have recorded Ultravox! with Steve Lillywhite and one of their idols, Brian Eno. It is an interesting mix of punk rock, art rock, elements of prog (hello violin solos!) and experimentation. Singer John Foxx has a different voice, although you can hear elements of someone like Bryan Ferry. Ultravox! has a whiff of Roxy Music about it - it's bound to with all of the shared influences. Eno lends a bit more space to the proceedings, adding atmosphere to songs like My Sex and the album's lead single, Dangerous Rhythm. It is, of all things, a reggae song. New territory for the band for sure. But somehow it works. The bass riff is jamming, the tune has some nice guitar riffing, and Foxx croons along perfectly. There are a few other well known tunes on this record - Satday Night In The City of The Dead, The Wild, The Beautiful And The Damned, My Sex, but I'm digging a little deeper and offering The Lonely Hunter. It's a midtempo funker - bit of a disco beat, grooving bass, big guitars. Kind of reminds me musically of what Japan was doing at the same time. The reissue includes four bonus tracks, live takes of album songs. There are also some extensive sleeve notes that were a pretty good read.

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