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Various Artists

Tomorrow's Fashions - Library Electronica 1972-1987

    Nothing said new or modern or futuristic quite like a synthesiser in the 70s and 80s. If you were shooting an advert and you wanted your product or your company to appear forward-thinking and ahead of the game, then you would want something electronic, something out of the ordinary. When TV producers and advertising directors started searching for music that sounded like “Tubular Bells” – and then Tomita, and later Jean Michel Jarre – music libraries such De Wolfe, Bruton, Parry and Chappell had to have the tracks readily available.

    Compiled by Bob Stanley, “Tomorrow’s Fashions” varies from advertising jingles and TV themes to space exploration and gorgeous, beatless ambience. Though it’s 40-to-50 years old there’s a real freshness to this music. Older jazz players Brian Bennett, John Cameron, Alan Hawkshaw and others seized the chance to operate a synth; younger pups including John Saunders and Monica Beale were simply intrigued by the new technology being wheeled into the studios. There’s a tangible sense of adventure. 

    “Tomorrow’s Fashions’” brand of electronica anticipated new age and ambient music. It also had both a direct and indirect influence on pop – the early Human League and the future sounds of Warp Records are all over this collection. Electronic library tracks have been sampled by everyone from MF Doom to Kendrick Lamar.

    One person’s primitive and experimental is another person’s space-age lullaby. This was music made in the shadows – in Soho’s secretive music library studios – that has now become desirable and influential. The chances are chunks of it will be sampled and used on hit records that have yet to be written. If the musicians’ aim was to soundtrack tomorrow’s fashions, they couldn’t have got it more right.


    1. COASTER - Simon Park
    2. RIPPLING REEDS - Wozo
    3. LEAVING - Sam Spence
    4. NORTHERN LIGHTS 1 - John Cameron
    5. SPAGHETTI JUNCTION - Peter Reno
    6. SPACE WALK - Rubba
    7. PROSPECT - Paul Hart

    1. TOMORROW'S FASHIONS - Geoff Bastow
    2. BLUE MOVIES - Brian Wade
    3. VIDEODISC - Trevor Bastow
    4. INTERFACE - Astral Sounds
    5. STARWAYS - Brian Chatton
    6. OPTICS - Unit 9
    7. ATOMIC STATION - Wozo

    1. FUTURE PROSPECT - Adrian Baker
    2. PLANNED PRODUCTION - Warren Bennett
    3. FUTURE PERSPECTIVES - Anthony Hobson Aka Tektron
    4. WATERFALL - Chameleon
    5. TELECOM - James Asher
    6. EAGLE - Simon Park Aka Soul City Orchestra
    7. ASTRAL PLAIN - Alan Hawkshaw

    1. DRIFTING IN TIME - Paul Williams
    2. EARTH BORN - Brian Bennett
    3. SOFT WAVES - Harry Forbes
    4. TOPAZ - Astral Sounds
    5. ETERNITY - Alan Hawkshaw
    6. INFINITY - John Cameron 

    Various Artists

    Girls With Guitars Got Eyes On You!

      Bona fide all-girl bands the Hairem, the Girls, the Debutantes, the Missfits, the Beat-Chics and the Ace Of Cups are stars of the show on this new vinyl volume in our ear-grabbing “Girls With Guitars” series, providing further confirmation that girls can do what the guys do.

      This collection opens with ‘Get Away From Me’ by the mean-sounding Angels (probably not the ‘My Boyfriend’s Back’ group of that name), a slice of feisty she-rock recorded circa 1965 that remained on the shelf at Philadelphia’s Swan Records until Ace rescued it about 40 years later, and closes with ‘Glue’ by the Ace Of Cups, a hippy outfit raved about by Jimi Hendrix in a Melody Maker interview back in 1967.

      Elsewhere, ballsy-voiced Joyce Harris (think Wanda Jackson meets Tina Turner) teams up with Texas bar band the Daylighters to tear the roof off ‘I Got My Mojo Working’, teenage ice skater Debbie Williams sings lead with male garage band the Unwritten Law, guitarist Chiyo fronts the Crescents on the instrumental ‘Pink Dominos’ and, well, you get the picture. Those so inclined can learn more about all the tracks on the swanky inner bag containing a picture-packed 3,000-word track commentary by series compiler Mick Patrick. 


      Side One
      1. Get Away From Me - The Angels
      2. The Hoochy Coo - The Fatimas
      3. Ask Me - Debbie Williams & The Unwritten Law
      4. Grave Digger - Unknown Group
      5. Give Me Rhythm And Blues - The Mysteries
      6. Bus Stop - The Hairem
      7. Pink Dominos - Chiyo & The Crescents

      Side Two
      1. I Got My Mojo Working – Joyce Harris & The Daylighters
      2. Chico's Girl - The Girls
      3. If You Wanna Be Happy - The Debutantes
      4. Dimples - The Missfits
      5. Skinny Minnie - The Beat-Chics
      6. Mary Had A Little Kiss - The Tomboys
      7. Glue - The Ace Of Cups

      Various Artists

      Jon Savage's The Secret Public - How The LGBTQ+ Aesthetic Shaped Pop Culture 1955-1979

        Homosexuality has been a part of post-war popular music since its very inception. Until the early 70s, however, it wasn’t talked about openly in that world: it was coded, hidden, secret. This of course mirrored society - during the 50s and 60s, the gay community felt like outcasts: harassed by the police, demonised by the media and politicians, imprisoned simply for being who they were.

        This compilation spans the time before and after Bowie, reflecting both the coded nature about the topic in the 50s and 60s and the greater openness that occurred in the early 70s. It begins in late 1955, with the extraordinary success of Little Richard; continues through early-60s pop and pop art; Tamla and soul, glam rock, the early 70s funk and disco that was played in the underground New York clubs, and then moves on to the omnipresence of disco, in the late 70s.

        This double CD compilation is about freedom - and freedom for all. Whilst some of the artists identify as LGBTQ+, then or now, some are included simply because they were played in gay or lesbian clubs — where their lyric or sound proved useful and enjoyable to the patrons - or because they were shaped in some way by the gay aesthetic or gay managers. It’s a love letter to the entwined world of music and sexuality in all its many guises and we hope you enjoy the ride.


        Disc One
        1. I Hear A New World - Joe Meek & The Blue Men
        2. Tutti-Frutti - Little Richard & His Band
        3. Esquerita And The Voola - Esquerita
        4. Wondrous Place - Billy Fury
        5. Strawberry Blonde (The Band Rocked On) - Frank D'rone
        6. Foot Stompin' - The Dovells
        7. Johnny Remember Me - John Leyton
        8. Peppermint Twist (Part 1) – Joey Dee & The Starliters
        9. Sally, Go ‘Round The Roses - The Jaynetts
        10. You Don't Own Me - Lesley Gore
        11. Needle In A Haystack - The Velvelettes
        12. Get Down With It - Bobby Marchan
        13. I'll Be Your Mirror – The Velvet Underground & Nico
        14. Heaven Must Have Sent You - The Elgins
        15. Stand Up Straight And Tall - Jackie Shane
        16. Women Is Losers – Big Brother & The Holding Company
        17. No Stranger Am I - Norma Tanega
        18. Pretty Golden Hair - Al Stewart
        19. David Watts - The Kinks
        20. Nothing But A Heartache - The Flirtations
        21. Stand! - Sly & The Family Stone
        22. Life & Death In G & A - Abaco Dream
        23. Nathan Jones - The Supremes
        24. Walk On The Wild Side - Lou Reed
        25. Coochi-Coo - Polly Perkins
        26. I'm A Man - Jobriath
        27. Soul Makossa - Manu Dibango
        28. Law Of The Land - The Temptations

        Disc Two
        1. Get Dancin' Part 1 – Disco Tex & The Sex-O-Lettes Featuring Sir Monti Rock Iii
        2. Lady Marmalade - Labelle
        3. Nobody's Gonna Change Me – The Dynamic Superiors
        4. Ain't Nobody Straight In L.A. - The Miracles
        5. I Need A Man (12-Inch Version) - Grace Jones
        6. I Feel Love - Patrick Cowley
        7. Orgasm Addict - Buzzcocks
        8. Fuck Off - Jayne County & The Electric Chairs
        9. Glad To Be Gay - Tom Robinson Band
        10. I Was Born This Way (12-Inch Version) - Carl Bean
        11. Prison (12-Inch Version) - Space
        12. Disco Dance (Mega Mix) (12-Inch Version) - Michele
        13. I Need Somebody To Love Tonight (12-Inch Version) - Sylvester

        Rodion G.A.

        From The Archives 1981-2017

          Rodion-Ladislau Rosca spent his lifetime creating music that was ambitious, groundbreaking and innovative. He was a pioneering composer, a talented multi-instrumentalist and producer. He pushed musical boundaries to their limits. This he did as a solo artist and with his group Rodion G.A.

          Despite being popular in their native Romania, Rodion G.A. had to work under an oppressive Communist regime only releasing two tracks that appeared on a compilation album in 1981. Rodion, however, made extensive recordings in his home studio. This new collection of material recorded between 1981 and 2017 is taken from that archive. Rodion died in 2021 aged 67. He has also been described as “the Godfather of Romanian electronic music.”

          Rodion G.A.’s music has been curated on a number of releases “The Lost Tapes” (2013), “Behind The Curtain (The Lost Album)” (2014) “Delta Space Mission” (2014) and “Rozalia” (2018).

          This new collection – compiled by Derek Anderson – draws on unreleased material from his personal archive. Some tracks sound like a metallic Foxx-era Ultravox! Others showcase electronic melodic pulsebeats and psychedelic workouts. We also see the first release of ‘Acolo Unde E Mister’ plus ‘Aminitiri’ originally released in 1981 on the “Formatii Rock 5” LP compilation and ‘Stele Si Lumini’ best-known for being performed on Romanian TV on New Years’ Eve in 1981.

          Rodion G.A.’s music has been critically acclaimed in the music press and this new collection will be welcome amongst his international legion of fans. 


          Side One
          1. Acolo Unde E Mister
          2. Lupta Lui Thibald
          3. Ciuperci Otrăvitoare
          4. Un Pahar Cu Apa
          5. Intervale

          Side Two
          1. Punct
          2. Balkan
          3. Joc
          4. Stele Si Lumini
          5. Poftiți La Control

          Side Three
          1. Halou Cosmic
          2. Tu Rea Ce Esti
          3. Cz 5000 Tragedy
          4. Vine Iarna
          5. Talk To Me
          6. The Journey (Del's Edit)

          Side Four
          1. The Final Farewell (Del's Edit)
          2. Catacombe
          3. Final Journey (Del's Edit)
          4. Amintiri
          5. Goodbye (Fade Away) (Del's Edit)

          Various Artists

          Fantastic Voyage: New Sounds For The European Canon 1977-1981

            By the turn of the 80s, the impact of David Bowie’s ground-breaking Berlin recordings – the synths, the alienation, the drily futuristic production – was being felt on music across Europe. What’s more, the records being made were reflecting back and influencing Bowie’s own work – 1979’s “Lodger” and 1980’s “Scary Monsters” owed a debt to strands of German kosmische (Holger Czukay), new electronica (Patrick Cowley, Harald Grosskopf), and the latest works from old friends and rivals like Robert Fripp, Peter Gabriel and Scott Walker, all of whom had been re-energised by the fizz of 1977.

            Compiled by Saint Etienne’s Bob Stanley and the BFI’s Jason Wood, “Fantastic Voyage” is the companion album to their hugely successful “Café Exil” collection, which imagined the soundtrack to David Bowie and Iggy Pop’s trans-European train journeys in the mid-to-late seventies. “Fantastic Voyage” is what happened next.

            Bowie’s influences and Bowie’s own influence were rebounding off each other as the 70s ended and the 80s began, notably in the emergent synthpop and new romantic scenes as well as through the music of enigmatic acts like the Associates and post-punk pioneers such as Cabaret Voltaire.

            Like “Low” and “Heroes”, some of the tracks on “Fantastic Voyage” are spiked with tension (Grauzone’s ‘Eisbär’) while some share those albums’ sense of travel (Simple Minds’ ‘Theme for Great Cities’, Ryuichi Sakamoto’s ‘Riot in Lagos’) and others find common ground with “Lodger’s” dark, subtle humour (Thomas Leer’s ‘Tight as a Drum’, Fripp’s ‘Exposure’).

            This is the thrilling, adventurous sound of European music before the watershed moment when Bowie would abandon art-pop for America and the emerging world of MTV with “Let’s Dance” in 1983. “Fantastic Voyage” soundtracks the few brief years when the echo chamber of Bowie, his inspirations, and his followers created an exciting, borderless music that was ready to challenge Anglo American influences. 

            TRACK LISTING

            1. Theme For Great Cities - Simple Minds
            2. Silent Command - Cabaret Voltaire
            3. Riot In Lagos - Ryuichi Sakamoto
            4. Eisbar - Grauzone
            5. White Car In Germany - The Associates
            6. Nightcrawler - Patrick Cowley
            7. On A Trouvé - Isabelle Mayereau
            8. 3,000,000 Synths - Chas Jankel
            9. No Self Control - Peter Gabriel
            10. Nite Flights - The Walker Brothers
            11. Tight As A Drum - Thomas Leer
            12. The Farther Away I Am - Daryl Hall
            13. So Weit, So Gut - Harald Grosskopf
            14. Exposure - Robert Fripp
            15. Patriarcat –
            Areski Belkacem & Brigitte Fontaine
            16. Silicon Chip - Basil Kirchin
            17. Ode To Perfume - Holger Czukay

            Various Artists

            Jon Savage’s 1983-1985: Welcome To Techno City

              Continuing his long-running and highly respected series for Ace, spanning year by year since the germination of his 1966 volume for both Ace and Faber Books, Jon Savage serves us up another of his spectacular insights into popular culture, this time for the years 1983 to 1985.

              Born out of the ashes of post-punk, there were plenty of experimental singles during the early part of this period: Siouxsie’s ‘Swimming Horses’, Shriekback’s ‘Lined Up’, Soft Cell’s ‘Heat’, Echo & The Bunnymen’s ‘Gods Will Be Gods’, and the Smiths’ ‘Girl Afraid’ – a perfect kitchen sink scenario. Pete Shelley and Scritti Politti went the electronic route to great effect, while the Special AKA delivered the perfect riposte to ‘Hard Times’ and having fun on the dole with the under-appreciated ‘Bright Lights’.

              But by the end of 1984, the true action throughout this period was to be found in electronic, black American and club music: whether the metal beat of Section 25’s ‘Looking From A Hilltop’, Trans-X’s daffy hi-NRG Eurobelter ‘Living On Video’, Shalamar’s pure electro ‘Disappearing Act’, or the new music coming out of Sugarhill and Tommy Boy – Grandmaster Flash, Double Dee and Steinski, and the sampled Malcolm X.

              This compilation begins in the mainstream and ends in the underground. It was the classic high 80s, before the full downside of the New Right political project was revealed – although the signs were all there – but the pop fizz cloaked a nostalgia that masked the beginnings of social and subcultural breakdown. The tribes were at war, wearing clothes from pop’s past, a dizzying phenomenon that looted the 50s and 60s in a costume drama of confrontation and dislocation.

              As ever, Jon reports from the thick of the action and provides both front line reportage and academic insight. Play loud and enjoy the trip.

              TRACK LISTING

              CD One
              1. All Tomorrow's Parties - Japan
              2. Soweto - Malcolm McLaren With The Mclarenettes
              3. Lined Up - Shriekback
              4. Telephone Operator - Pete Shelley
              5. Gods Will Be Gods - Echo & The Bunnymen
              6. Heat (12-Inch Version) - Soft Cell
              7. (Hey You) The Rock Steady Crew – The Rock Steady Crew
              8. Disappearing Act (12-Inch Version) - Shalamar
              9. Bright Lights - The Special Aka
              10. White Lines (Don't Do It) (12-Inch Version) – Grandmaster & Melle Mel
              11. Techno City (12-Inch Vocal Version) - Cybotron
              12. Swimming Horses - Siouxsie & The Banshees
              13. Heartbeat (12-Inch Version) - The Psychedelic Furs
              14. No Sell Out (12-Inch Version) – Malcolm X (Keith Leblanc)
              15. What Presence?! - Orange Juice
              16. Girl Afraid (12-Inch Version) - The Smiths

              CD Two:
              1. Why? (12-Inch Version) - Bronski Beat
              2. Love Resurrection (12-Inch Version) - Alison Moyet
              3. Looking From A Hilltop (12-Inch Version) – Section 25
              4. Think Fast (12-Inch Version) - Pamela Joy
              5. Hypnotize (Version) (12-Inch Version) - Scritti Politti
              6. Close (To The Edit) (12-Inch Version) - The Art Of Noise
              7. Life's A Scream (12-Inch Version) - A Certain Ratio
              8. Never Understand - The Jesus & Mary Chain
              9. Sunspots - Julian Cope
              10. Johnny Come Home - Fine Young Cannibals
              11. In The Night - Pet Shop Boys
              12. Single Life - Cameo
              13. I Want You (12-Inch Version) - Cabaret Voltaire
              14. Crazy – R.E.M. 

              Various Artists

              Bob Stanley & Pete Wiggs Present Incident At A Free Festival

                “Incident At a Free Festival” is a tribute to the mid-afternoon slots at Deeply Vale, Bickershaw, Krumlin, Weeley, and Plumpton – early 70s festivals that don’t get the column inches afforded the Isle of Wight or Glastonbury Fayre, but which would have been rites of passage for thousands of kids. Bands lower down the bill would have been charged with waking up the gentle hippies and appealing to both the greasy bikers and the girls in knee-high boots who wanted to wiggle their hips. And the best way to do that was with volume, riffs and percussion.

                Compiled by the venerated Bob Stanley and Pete Wiggs of Saint Etienne, this is the heavier side of the early 70s they summarised on the acclaimed “English Weather” collection. There’s an air of menace and illicit thrills among tracks by Andwella, Stack Waddy and Leaf Hound (whose “Growers of Mushroom” album is worth well over £1,000). Bigger names include the rabble-rousing Edgar Broughton Band and kings of the festival freakout, Hawkwind. They are represented by their rare version of ‘Ejection’

                For every mystical Tyrannosaurus Rex performance there was something like Atomic Rooster’s Tomorrow Night or Curved Air’s Back Street Luv to capture the spirit of the day and stir the loins of festival goers; the tracks on “Incident At a Free Festival” were inspired by both Chicago’s percussive wig-outs and the Pink Fairies’ anarchic spirit. The sounds were heavy and frequently funky, with a definite scent of danger. Their message was clear and simple: clap your hands, stamp your feet, hold on to your mind. 

                TRACK LISTING

                1. Chasing Shadows - Deep Purple
                2. One Way Glass - Manfred Mann Chapter Three
                3. Hold Onto Your Mind - Andwella
                4. Hot Pants - Alan Parker & Alan Hawkshaw
                5. Do It - Pink Fairies
                6. Tomorrow Night – Atomic Rooster
                7. Taken All The Good Things - Stray
                8. Out Demons Out - Edgar Broughton Band
                9. For Mad Men Only - May Blitz
                10. Back Street Luv - Curved Air
                11. Ejection - Hawkwind
                12. Meat Pies ’Ave Come But Band's Not ’Ere Yet - Stackwaddy
                13. Lovely Lady Rock - James Hogg
                14. Third World - Paladin
                15. Taking Some Time On - Barclay James Harvest
                16. Ricochet - Jonesy
                17. Led Balloon - Steve Gray
                18. Big Boobs Boogie - Slowload
                19. Freelance Fiend - Leaf Hound
                20. Confunktion - Dave Richmond 

                The Seeds

                The Seeds - Deluxe Vinyl Edition

                  Legendary US garage band best known for their evergreen classics ‘Pushin’ Too Hard’ and ‘Can’t Seem To Make You Mine’ that detonated in the US charts in late 1966 and early 1967. Whilst ‘Pushin’ Too Hard’ was their only top 40 hit, this song has been discovered by every new generation that hear it from punk rockers of the 70s to those who are glued to their mobile phones today.

                  Their debut LP “The Seeds” released in 1966 contains both these tracks and is rightly feted as a garage classic. It is an essential album. As our very own Alec Palao stated, “Like the first Ramones long-player, it is one of rock’s great debuts; an album where, in spite of some obvious influences, a signature sign was sharply defined.”

                  Ace are delighted to serve up the deluxe edition of “The Seeds” that was lovingly curated by Palao and released by GNP Crescendo some years back. Not only do you get “The Seeds” with 12 pulsating tracks but also a bonus LP of alternate versions and a couple of unheard tracks like ‘The Other Place’ and ‘Out Of The Question’. The extended version of ‘Evil Hoodoo’ is a stone cold treat.

                  Both albums are housed in a gatefold sleeve with an 8-page full colour booklet with Palao’s brilliant liner notes and sensational photos and memorabilia.

                  There is no ‘Excuse Excuse’ not to pick up or stock this one. 

                  TRACK LISTING

                  Side One
                  1. Can't Seem To Make You Mine
                  2. No Escape
                  3. Lose Your Mind
                  4. Evil Hoodoo
                  5. Girl I Want You
                  6. Pushin' Too Hard
                  Side Two
                  1. Try To Understand
                  2. Nobody Spoil
                  3. It's A Hard Life
                  4. You Can't Be Trusted
                  5. Excuse, Excuse
                  6. Fallin' In Love
                  Side Three
                  1. Out Of The Question (Version 1, Master)
                  2. Excuse Excuse
                  3. Dreaming Of Your Love
                  4. Pushin' Too Hard (Take 1)
                  5. The Other Place (Take 2)
                  6. It's A Hard Life (Take 3)
                  7. Nobody Spoil My Fun (Alternate Overdub, Take 3a)
                  Side Four
                  1. You Can't Be Trusted (Take 3)
                  2. Evil Hoodoo (Unedited Take And Intercut Section) 

                  Various Artists

                  Bobby Gillespie Presents I Still Can't Believe You're Gone

                    Following on from the Primal Scream frontman’s brilliantly-received previous release for Ace, ‘Sunday Mornin’ Comin’ Down’, Bobby Gillespie brings us another slice of the music that soundtracks his life. And in this case, it’s his touring life. Drawing on the experience of ‘the way that the noise and clamour of the road can tire you out, wear you down and frazzle your nerves to shattered fragments of jangled exhaustion’, these are the records Bobby turns to for solace, for comfort, for empathy and for resourcefulness.

                    The compilation features an introduction from the man himself, talking us through his personal choices as though he’s sitting cross-legged on the carpet going through records with you in his lounge. Also long-time cohort of the band, Kris Needs has written extensive liner-notes, serving up an intensive track by track insight and analysis.

                    Titled after and kicking off with the Willie Nelson track of the same name, ‘I Still Can’t Believe You’re Gone’ leads us through a darker and deeper exploration than its predecessor, featuring Nick Cave’s funereal version of ‘By The Time I Get To Phoenix’ and Ry Cooder’s sparse and beautiful reworking of ‘Dark End Of The Street’. And we get there via such greats as Bob Dylan, JJ Cale, Donnie Fritts, Crazy Horse, Lee Hazlewood, Al Green, Thin Lizzy and so many more.

                    In Bobby’s own words: ‘These songs are soul savers to soothe frayed and battered nerves and to ease and settle the heart. They work on me like medicine every time. I would like to share this wonderful music that has given me strength, joy and inspiration over the years with you the listener, so that you too might get the same feelings of protection and inspiration that I do whenever I listen to these songs. We're all travellers on some kind of road through this life, and we all need respite from time-to-time - the music on this compilation is soul food of the highest order - I hope you enjoy it.’. 

                    STAFF COMMENTS

                    Andy says: Read any interview with Primal Scream's Bobby Gillespie over the years, and you can't fail to notice what a ridiculously knowledgeable fan of musical history he is. It's there in the multitude of styles his band have always explored, and it's there in his previous compilation for Ace, ‘Sunday Mornin' Comin' Down’. Guess what? This second outing is even better!

                    TRACK LISTING

                    Vinyl Tracklisting
                    Side One
                    1. I Still Can't Believe You're Gone – Willie Nelson
                    2. Love Sick - Bob Dylan
                    3. We Had It All - Donnie Fritts
                    4. Magnolia - J.J. Cale
                    5. In The Rain - The Dramatics *
                    Side Two
                    1. By The Time I Get To Phoenix – Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds
                    2. I Don't Want To Talk About It - Crazy Horse
                    3. Dark End Of The Street - Ry Cooder
                    4. Kind Woman - Percy Sledge
                    5. Wait And See - Lee Hazlewood
                    Side Three
                    1. Strong As Death (Sweet As Love) - Al Green
                    2. Shades Of A Blue Orphanage - Thin Lizzy
                    3. Heart Like A Wheel - Kate & Anna Mcgarrigle
                    4. When My Mind's Gone - Mott The Hoople
                    Side Four
                    1. I'll Be Long Gone - Boz Scaggs
                    2. The Coldest Days Of My Life Pt 1 – The Chi-Lites
                    3. Roll Um Easy - Little Feat
                    4. Brokedown Palace - Grateful Dead
                    5. I Feel Like Going Home - Charlie Rich

                    * Exclusive Vinyl Track

                    Various Artists

                    In The Light Of Time UK Post-Rock And Leftfield Pop 1992 - 1998

                      In the early 90s, a number of bands exploring the daring side of guitar pop and rock started to emerge in the UK. Most were new, some included members of 80s groups looking for new directions. They were supported by established independent labels such as Rough Trade and 4AD/Guernica and new ventures like Too Pure or Domino.

                      Influenced by the legacy of post-punk, minimalism, 70s art rock and a growing electronic scene, their first releases were enthusiastically received by the media. This included a 1994 article in The Wire where journalist Simon Reynolds used the term “post-rock” to refer to some of them: Bark Psychosis, Disco Inferno, Moonshake, Seefeel, Main, Pram, Insides…

                      Even though these bands didn’t sound alike, they seemed to share an ethos of deconstruction and were interested in the possibilities of studio manipulation. Calling their music post-rock meant that it still had a link with established rock music, even as it picked it apart and made something new from its component parts.

                      However, 1994 was also the first year when Britpop dominated the UK charts and music press, and the contemporary artists featured on this collection felt their already-small window of exposure shrinking. Still, away from the limelight, they released innovative records that were lauded worldwide and have since acquired cult status.

                      The second part of the 90s brought a new crop of groups and “bedroom” labels that carried on this forward-thinking attitude to music, unburdened by genre notions and open-minded.

                      “In The Light Of Time” is the first compilation to survey this period and scene of UK music. If they were released today, these tracks would probably be described as post-punk, art rock or leftfield pop. But beyond any tags or labels, they remain as inventive and captivating as when they first came out.

                      TRACK LISTING

                      1. Second Language - Disco Inferno
                      2. Naturally Occurring Anchors – Spoonfed Hybrid
                      3. City Poison - Moonshake
                      4. Every Day Shines (D Mix) - Earwig
                      5. In The Light Of Time - Flying Saucer Attack
                      6. Starry Night - Laika
                      7. Spectra Decay - Main
                      8. Darling Effect - Insides
                      9. Loose Threads - Pram
                      10. A Cheery Wave From Stranded Youngsters - Mogwai
                      11. In The Event Of Just Looking - Appliance
                      12. (The) Weight - Hood
                      13. A Street Scene - Bark Psychosis
                      14. I Am The Sub-Librarian - Piano Magic
                      15. Play Away - Electric Sound Of Joy
                      16. Sun Drawing - Movietone
                      17. Through You - Seefeel 

                      Jon Appleton & Don Cherry

                      Human Music - 2023 Reissue

                        The discography of trumpeter Don Cherry is one of the most fascinating in music. Although famously associated with the ground-breaking free explorations of Ornette Coleman as his career progressed, Cherry delved into all manner of waters from cosmic mediative wig-outs to mainstream funk. He also pioneered what is now branded as world music, At the other end of the spectrum is this delicious collaboration with Jon Appleton called “Human Music”.

                        Jon Appleton was an early pioneer of electronic music in America. He established his first primitive studio whilst studying at the University of Oregon in the mid-60s. Assisted by a financial grant this was greatly expanded at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire in the late 60s where Appleton began to record his sonic explorations at his bespoke electronic music studio.

                        It seemed only natural that Appleton would come to the attention of the questing ears of Flying Dutchman label supremo Bob Thiele. This led to the album “Appleton Syntonic Menagerie” released on Flying Dutchman in 1969. Recorded at the Dartmouth studio it’s a fascinating album rich in ideas, proto synthesiser sounds and sonic exploration. Listening today, it’s as if Steve Stapleton from Nurse With Wound went back in time to record a secret album.

                        It was probably Bob Thiele’s idea to put Appleton and Cherry together. Thus, Cherry went to Appleton’s electronic music studio at Dartmouth College to record an album of improvisations. Apparently, laid down live the four extended tracks are sparse, spacious and a compelling listen and where jazz meets early electronica. As a jazz musician, Cherry not only played wood, bamboo and metal flutes, kalimbas; earthquake drums, coronet with traditional mouthpiece and bamboo reed but listened to Appleton’s oscillations to ensure that his parts fit into this unlikely musical jigsaw.

                        This album has been out of print on vinyl for decades and as well as remastering “Human Music” we have made sure to serve it up in its original gatefold sleeve that features striking original artwork by Don Cherry’s Swedish wife Moki ‘Moqui’ Cherry. An exhibition of her work was recently displayed at the ICA between May and September 2023 

                        TRACK LISTING

                        Side One
                        1. Boa
                        2. Oba
                        Side Two
                        1. Abo
                        2. Bao 

                        John Carter / Bobby Bradford

                        Self Determination Music - 2023 Reissue

                          The John Carter and Bobby Bradford Quartet/Quintet were critical to the progressive jazz movement around Los Angeles in the late 60s alongside the likes of Horace Tapscott. Both hailed from the Watts area and trumpeter, Bradford played with a woodshedding Ornette Coleman for two years in the early 60s when the legendary free movement leader decided not to record for a while but wanted to hone his trademark sound on the saxophone. Multi-reed player, Carter also worked with Coleman who brought them together to lead their own band.

                          Their first outing on Flying Dutchman was “Flight For Four” as the Carter Bradford Quartet that was released in 1969. This is the second album they recorded where Carter and Bradford were supported by Tom Williamson (bass), Buzz Freeman (drums) and another uncredited bass player on four extended improvisations – ‘The Sunday Afternoon Jazz Blues Society’, ‘The Eye Of The Storm’, ‘Loneliness’ and ‘Encounter’.

                          The album has been out of print on vinyl since 1971 and Ace are delighted to release it with audio taken from hi-res digital transfers from the original masters.

                          TRACK LISTING

                          Side One
                          1. The Sunday Afternoon
                          Jazz Blues Society
                          2. The Eye Of The Storm
                          Side Two
                          1. Loneliness
                          2. Encounter

                          Various Artists

                          Tribal Rites Of The New Saturday Night Brooklyn Disco 1974-5

                            • Before there was Saturday Night Fever there was underground disco. DJs across America went out and found the music to play; dancers went out and found the clubs. At this point, in the early seventies, the disco was the venue and not a genre of music.

                            • By the time Nik Cohn’s short story Tribal Rites of the New Saturday Night was published by New York magazine in June 1976, disco was the biggest genre of music on the charts and was about to get bigger still, becoming an all-enveloping cultural phenomenon. Cohn sold the film rights to Robert Stigwood, and his classic club yarn became Saturday Night Fever.

                            • “Tribal Rites Of The New Saturday Night” is the soundtrack to Cohn’s story, where disco began; a 1975 score for the underground clubs of Brooklyn and Queens that played R&B, soul and Latin beats to people who lived for the weekend.

                            • Bob Stanley has put this collection together, sourcing what was actually played in Brooklyn discos in 1974 and 1975. Only a few specific records were mentioned in Cohn’s feature, but two of them – Ben E King’s ‘Supernatural Thing Part 1’ and Harold Melvin’s ‘Wake Up Everybody’ - were cosmically great and both are included here, alongside underground favourites like Moment Of Truth’s Four Tops-like ‘Helplessly’ and Gloria Scott’s Barry White-produced modern soul classic ‘Just As Long As We’re Together’. Ivano Fossati’s incredible ‘Night Of The Wolf’ has fans in northern soul, disco and prog circles.

                            • Without Cohn’s original story, it’s quite possible that disco would have remained an underground phenomenon – “Tribal Rites Of The New Saturday Night” paints a scene in full flower. Saturday Night Fever would eventually, if unintentionally, wreck the underground nature of this scene, and clubs like Studio 54 would destroy the democracy of the party, but for two or three years the scene was largely undocumented and magical. This album is the sound of disco before it was captured.

                            TRACK LISTING

                            Side One
                            1. Helplessly - Moment Of Truth
                            2. After You've Had Your Fling - The Intrepids
                            3. Welcome To The Club - Blue Magic
                            4. I Can't Move No Mountains - Margie Joseph
                            5. Supernatural Thing Part 1 - Ben E King
                            Side Two
                            1. Mellow Me - Faith, Hope & Charity
                            2. Georgia's After Hours - Richard "Popcorn" Wylie
                            3. Date With The Rain - Eddie Kendricks
                            4. Just As Long As We're Together - Gloria Scott
                            5. Wendy Is Gone - Ronnie Mcneir
                            6. Got To Get You Back - Sons Of Robin Stone
                            Side Three
                            1. Night Of The Wolf (Tema Del Lupo) - Ivano Fossati
                            2. Good Things Don't Last Forever – Ecstasy, Passion & Pain
                            3. Tell Me What You Want - Jimmy Ruffin
                            4. Keep It Up - Betty Everett
                            5. Free & Easy - Satyr
                            6. Each Morning I Wake Up - Major Harris
                            Side Four
                            1. It's The Same Old Story - Act I
                            2. You Can't Hide Love - Creative Source
                            3. The Whole Damn World Is Going Crazy – John Gary Williams
                            4. If That's The Way You Feel - White Heat
                            5. Wake Up Everybody - Harold Melvin And The Bluenotes 

                            Various Artists

                            28 Little Bangers From Richard Hawley's Jukebox

                              • Ace Records is thrilled to be working with seminal singer-songwriter, toast of this year's Olivier Awards and all-round Sheffield legend Richard Hawley on this, the first volume of a compilation series of some of his favourite singles. This is a selection of 28 7''s that Richard has collected on his travels around the globe, through friends, family, collectors, word of mouth, thrift shop finds, pub jukebox gems and everything in between. Richard refers to the glue that joins these selections together as 'Little Bangers' as they are all mini hand grenades; bright lights that explode and fizzle out, some big names, some rarities, some lost souls, some obscurities, some by artists he actively enjoys knowing almost nothing about other than they want to get him on his feet and dance. Many are garage instrumentals, exposing the guitar-line as lead melody and the art of telling a story without lyrics.

                              • As Richard puts it, 'I’m fascinated by the 7-inch single because of the discipline of it. A 7-inch single can only contain a certain amount of information... So, you have to learn the discipline of cramming all that information and craft into a short space of time. If you imagine this album as a piece of bacon, there’s absolutely no fat on it at all. It’s just juicy meat. There aren’t flabby recordings, they are very nimble.'

                              • We're extra proud that the Hendrix Estate have allowed us to include Curtis Knight & The Squires' ferocious and never previously licensed 'Hornet's Nest' which naturally we proudly kick off with. We feature the five-minutes-plus long version that has never been released before. The pace never slackens, taking in the Shadows, Link Wray, the Troggs, the Champs, Jimmy Gordon and so many more besides. It's joyful, it's relentless, and you can listen to it on repeat for a thousand miles.

                              To give Richard the last word: 'My advice to everybody, is keep on the surfboard, motherfucker. These records have kept me on my surfboard for decades, you know what I’m saying?'

                              STAFF COMMENTS

                              Laura says: Richard Hawley was schooled on rock’n’roll; his dad was a musician in the 60s and 70s and growing up he was always surrounded by musicians. So, it’s no surprise that he’s compiled these 7” gems from that era, collected on his travels. As he says: “They’re called Little Bangers because they’re like miniature musical hand grenades!”

                              TRACK LISTING

                              SIDE ONE
                              1. HORNET'S NEST –
                              Curtis Knight & The Squires Feat. Jimi Hendrix
                              2. NASTY - The Time Keepers
                              3. PATH THROUGH THE FOREST - The Factory
                              4. GET ON THIS PLANE - The Premiers
                              5. SCOTCH ON THE SOCKS - The Shadows
                              6. QUASIMOTO - The Road Runners
                              7. LAZY REBEL - Twangy Rebels
                              SIDE TWO
                              1. SWINGING DRUMS - Ronny Kae
                              2. CUTTIN' OUT - Rockin’ Ronald & The Rebels
                              3. HONKY - The Ho-Dads
                              4. BLACK NIGHT - Cheryl Thompson
                              5. LONG LINE RIDER - Bobby Darin
                              6. POPPIN' POPEYE - Link Wray
                              7. HOT-ROD - King Curtis
                              SIDE THREE
                              1. FEELS LIKE A WOMAN - The Troggs
                              2. CUTTIN' OUT - The Pirates
                              3. WHERE YOU GONNA GO - Art Guy
                              4. NEB'S TUNE - Ahab & The Wailers
                              5. BUZZZZZZ - Jimmy Gordon
                              6. JUNGLE WALK - The Dyna-Sores
                              7. SURFIN' & SWINGIN' - Les Brown Jr
                              SIDE FOUR
                              1. TAHITI - Jimmy & Stan
                              2. BAWANA JINDE - Al Duncan
                              3. DEAD END PART 1 - The Executioners
                              4. REQUIEM FOR LOVE - Bobbie Gentry & Jody Reynolds
                              5. 3/4 MASH - The Champs
                              6. EL GATO - The Chandelles
                              7. IT’S NOTHING TO ME – Sanford Clark

                              Various Artists

                              Bob Stanley / Pete Wiggs Present Winter Of Discontent

                                There was plenty of genuine discontent in Britain at the tail end of the 1970s, and it had little to do with bin strikes or dark rumours about overflowing morgues. In the world of popular music, the most liberating after-effect of the Sex Pistols was that anyone with something to say now felt they could make a 7” single. “Winter Of Discontent” is the sound of truly DIY music, made by people who maybe hadn’t written a song until a day or two before they went into the studio. It’s spontaneous and genuinely free in a way the British music scene has rarely been before or since.

                                “Winter of Discontent” has been compiled by Saint Etienne’s Bob Stanley and Pete Wiggs, the latest in their highly acclaimed series of albums that includes “The Daisy Age”, “Fell From The Sun” and “English Weather” ("really compelling and immersive: it’s a pleasure to lose yourself in it" - Alexis Petridis, the Guardian). The era's bigger DIY names (Scritti Politti, TV Personalities, the Fall) and the lesser-known (Exhibit A, Digital Dinosaurs, Frankie’s Crew) are side by side on “Winter Of Discontent”. Mark Perry’s Sniffin’ Glue command – “Here’s one chord, here’s another, now start a band” – was amplified by the Mekons and the Raincoats, whose music shared a little of punk’s volume, speed and distortion, but all of its obliqueness and irreverence.

                                The discontent was with society as a whole. No subject matter was taboo: oppressive maleness (Scritti Politti); deluded Britishness (TV Personalities); gender stereotypes (Raincoats, Androids of Mu); nihilistic youth (Fatal Microbes); alcoholism (Thin Yoghurts); self-doubt and pacifism (Zounds). The band names (Thin Yoghurts!) and those of individual members (Andrew Lunchbox!) had enough daftness to avoid any accusations of solemnity.

                                “Winter Of Discontent” is the definitive compilation of the UK DIY scene, and a beacon in grim times. 

                                STAFF COMMENTS

                                Darryl says: A soundtrack to a generation of discontent in the late 70s. DIY music that spontaneously smashed through the British music scene in the wake of the punk revolution.
                                Mark Perry’s Sniffin’ Glue command, “Here’s one chord, here’s another, now start a band” was the fuse and these tracks are the light that shone through those dark days.

                                TRACK LISTING

                                SIDE ONE
                                1. WHERE WERE YOU? – The Mekons
                                2. VIOLENCE GROWS – Fatal Microbes
                                3. THE TERRAPLANE FIXATION – Animals & Men
                                4. WORK – Blue Orchids
                                5. SMALL HOURS – Karl’s Empty Body
                                6. SOMEBODY – Frankie’s Crew
                                SIDE TWO
                                1. CONFIDENCE – Scritti Politti
                                2. DRINK PROBLEM – Thin Yoghurts
                                3. LOW FLYING AIRCRAFT – Anne Bean & Paul Burwell
                                4. BROW BEATEN – Performing Ferret Band
                                5. NO FORGETTING – The Manchester Mekon
                                6. FAIRYTALE IN THE SUPERMARKET – The Raincoats
                                SIDE THREE
                                1. CAN’T CHEAT KARMA – Zounds
                                2. BORED HOUSEWIVES – Androids Of Mu
                                3. IN MY AREA (Take 2) – The Fall
                                4. THE SIDEWAYS MAN – The Digital Dinosaurs
                                5. ATTITUDES – The Good Missionaries
                                6. THE WINDOW’S BROKEN – Human Cabbages
                                SIDE FOUR
                                1. KING AND COUNTRY – Television Personalities
                                2. IN THE NIGHT – Exhibit ‘A’
                                3. NUDES - Performing Ferret Band
                                4. DIFFERENT STORY – Tarzan 5
                                5. THE RED PULLOVER – The Gynaecologists
                                6. PRODUCTION LINE – The Door And The Window

                                Various Artists

                                Guerrilla Girls! She-Punks & Beyond 1975-2016

                                  “Guerrilla Girls!”, Ace Records’ much-anticipated first release of 2023, takes us on a thrilling ride from punk’s mid-70s origins, via the left-field post-punk groups, jangly female combos, grunge bands and vigilante Riot Grrrls of the 80s and 90s, to the she-punk bands of recent years – a five-decade alternative to the macho hegemony of rock.

                                  The collection highlights songs that emerged out of a dynamic underculture of female creative expression. What unites the featured artists is a healthy disregard for the way the music industry ties up its female performers into pretty, neo-liberal packages. From Patti Smith, universal mother of the punk movement, to the Bags, Bikini Kill and Skinny Girl Diet, this music is anti-A&R. Including lesser-known names such as San Francisco street punk Mary Monday and London-based experimentalists pragVec, it shows that, rather than being a few novelty bands existing on the margins, these performers represent a stronger, more three-dimensional version of the female experience.

                                  Glorious resistance was on display in the first wave of UK female-fronted punk bands. Poly Styrene’s charged vocals on X-Ray Spex’s ‘Iama Poseur’, for instance, were a deliberate refusal to be a pretty punkette. With 15 year-old Lora Logic on saxophone, X-Ray Spex epitomised a fearless, self-defined agency that was at odds with the pastel shades and flowery, submissive Laura Ashley version of 1970s girlhood. By the early 80s, there was a hugely vibrant scene propelled by the diverse rhythms and voices of post-punk feminism. Lora Logic had left X-Ray Spex to form the interweaving textures of Essential Logic, the Mo-dettes mangled ska and off-kilter pop, and Birmingham band Au Pairs sliced political rigour into their lyrics and funky guitar work.

                                  Some female artists took that elemental energy into pop, creating pop-punk with a twist. We’ve Got A Fuzzbox And We’re Gonna Use It!! made a statement on music technology and female power with a cheeky play on words. Their song ‘Rules And Regulations’ shows that what Guerrilla Girls do well is debunking – taking genres of popular song and turning them inside out – like the way the Pandoras and the Pussywillows would amp up the driving beat and high vocals of the 60s girl group style, and subvert it with a DIY garage element.

                                  In its fanzine culture, use of montage and DIY music, 90s Riot Grrrl bands such as Bikini Kill and Bratmobile drew direct inspiration from 70s punk, articulated through the prism of Third Wave feminism. Too often, Riot Grrrl gigs were invaded by men intent on heckling “the enemy”. Liz Naylor, manager of British Riot Grrrl band Huggy Bear, says that their concerts became war zones. From the US grunge and Riot Grrrl scenes emerged more female instrumentalists, with bands such as L7 and Babes In Toyland proving that it was possible to recruit cutting-edge drummers, bass players and guitarists. Lori Barbero, whose relentless power drumming is a major element of Babes In Toyland, took the one instrument that has been a staple of male rock’n’roll and made it her muse.

                                  In the 2000s a new generation of girl-punk bands drew on the Riot Grrrl underculture to form their own sound. London trio the Tuts refashioned C86, Riot Grrrl and lush dream pop on songs like the ironically titled ‘Let Go Of The Past’, while the Regrettes injected shots of ska and doo wop into their explosive West Coast pop-punk. What began with Patti Smith and 70s punk has grown into a vast, spikey infrastructure of girl music. Many take inspiration from their foremothers, like Skinny Girl Diet whose vigilante feminism and punk distortion has been championed in return by Viv Albertine of the Slits. As long as these female artists stay aware of their musical vision and what they are trying to express – in a sense, A&R themselves – the underculture will continue to grow and flower. And this “Guerrilla Girls!” compilation is a celebration of that power.

                                  The back sleeve of the release features a scene-setting introductory essay by Lucy O’Brien (author of She Bop: The Definitive History Of Women In Popular Music). Each of the two discs come in a swanky inner bag containing a track commentary by compiler Mick Patrick (Ace Records’ long-serving champion of female artists of all persuasions) and exclusive interviews with many of the featured artists by Vim Renault and Lene Cortina (founders of the Punk Girl Diaries webzine).

                                  TRACK LISTING

                                  SIDE ONE
                                  1. GLORIA: In Excelsis Deo / Gloria (Version) - Patti Smith
                                  2. SURVIVE - The Bags
                                  3. IAMA POSEUR - X-Ray Spex
                                  4. I GAVE MY PUNK JACKET TO RICKIE - Mary Monday & The Bitches
                                  5. I DIDN’T HAVE THE NERVE TO SAY NO - Blondie
                                  6. YOU’RE A MILLION - The Raincoats
                                  SIDE TWO
                                  1. POPCORN BOY (WADDLE YA DO?) - Essential Logic
                                  2. EXPERT - PragVEC
                                  3. MY CHERRY IS IN SHERRY - Ludus
                                  4. KRAY TWINS - Mo-Dettes
                                  5. EARTHBEAT - The Slits
                                  6. DAS AH RIOT - Bush Tetras
                                  SIDE THREE
                                  1. BITCHEN SUMMER (SPEEDWAY) - Bangles
                                  2. SHAKEDOWN - Au Pairs
                                  3. IT’S ABOUT TIME - The Pandoras
                                  4. COME ON NOW - The Pussywillows
                                  5. RULES AND REGULATIONS - We’ve Got A Fuzzbox And We’re Gonna Use It!!
                                  6. HER JAZZ - Huggy Bear
                                  7. BRUISE VIOLET - Babes In Toyland
                                  SIDE FOUR
                                  1. REBEL GIRL - Bikini Kill
                                  2. PRETEND WE’RE DEAD - L7
                                  3. WHAT’S WRONG WITH YOU - Bratmobile
                                  4. LET GO OF THE PAST - The Tuts
                                  5. HOT - The Regrettes
                                  6. SILVER SPOONS – Skinny Girl Diet

                                  Various Artists

                                  Bob Stanley And Pete Wiggs Present Fell From The Sun

                                    “Fell From The Sun” gathers the best of the 98bpm records that soundtracked the summer of 1990. It has been compiled by Bob Stanley, whose own group Saint Etienne makes an appearance alongside acknowledged classics (Primal Scream’s ‘Higher Than The Sun’) and forgotten beauties (Soul Family Sensation’s ‘I Don’t Even Know If I Should Call You Baby’).

                                    1989 had been a long hot summer, but 1990 felt longer and hotter. Since the house music explosion of 1987, Britain had had a whistle in its mouth, and it needed a lie down. February 1990 brought two records that were made to accompany the sunrise and would shape the immediate future: The KLF’s “Chill Out” was a continuous journey, a woozy, reverb-laden mix; and Andrew Weatherall’s drastic remix of a Primal Scream album track – ‘Loaded’ – slowed down the pace on the dancefloor itself, right down to 98 beats per minute.

                                    Within weeks of ‘Loaded’ and “Chill Out” emerging, a whole wave of similarly chilled, floaty, mid-tempo records appeared. The charts were full of chugging Soul II Soul knock-offs, but further out were amazingly atmospheric records such as the Grid’s ‘Floatation’, which married the new-age relaxation method du jour with Jane Birkin-like breathy sighs; BBG’s ‘Snappiness’, which was all sad synth pads and Eric Satie piano; and the Aloof’s ‘Never Get Out Of The Boat’, which re-imagined Apocalypse Now as if it had been shot in Uxbridge.

                                    “Fell From The Sun” gathers the best of the 98bpm records that soundtracked the summer of 1990. It has been compiled by Bob Stanley, whose own group Saint Etienne makes an appearance alongside acknowledged classics (Primal Scream’s ‘Higher Than The Sun’) and forgotten beauties (Soul Family Sensation’s ‘I Don’t Even Know If I Should Call You Baby’).

                                    This was a modernist sound, grabbing bits of the past, the feel of the immediate now, and creating something entirely new. There was a notable 90s-does-60s vibe, a neo-psychedelia that didn’t involve guitars. For a moment, or at least for a summer, it felt like the perfect future had already arrived. “Fell From The Sun” encapsulates that moment.

                                    STAFF COMMENTS

                                    Matt says: Mega comp of comedown downbeat, sunrise indie-dance and woozy morning moods; curated by our good friends and musical heroes Pete Wiggs and Bob Stanley who really seem to know how to organize a collection with sincere and heartfelt sentiment. Unmissable!

                                    TRACK LISTING

                                    1. HIGHER THAN THE SUN (HIGHER THAN THE ORB)(Extended Mix) - Primal Scream
                                    2. IT COULD NOT HAPPEN (Essential Trance Hall Mix) - Critical Rhythm Feat Jango Thriller & Vandal
                                    3. CASCADES (Hypnotone Mix) - Sheer Taft
                                    4. AFRIKA (Love And Laughter Remix) - History Feat Q-Tee
                                    5. FLOATATION (Original Version) - The Grid
                                    6. SPEEDWELL (Radio Edit) - Saint Etienne
                                    7. FALLEN (Album Version) - One Dove
                                    8. TEMPLE HEAD (Pacific Mix - Airwaves) – Transglobal Underground
                                    9. JUST A LITTLE BIT MORE (Electro Instrumental Mix) - Massonix
                                    10. U MAKE ME FEEL (Running Water Aka Workhouse Mix) - Elsi Curry
                                    11. I DON’T EVEN KNOW IF I SHOULD CALL YOU BABY (Marshall Jefferson Symphony Mix) – Soul Family Sensation
                                    12. SNAPPINESS (7” Edit) - BBG
                                    13. NEVER GET OUT THE BOAT (The Flying Mix) - The Aloof
                                    14. SPIRITUAL HIGH (The Moodfood Megamix) – Moodswings

                                    Various Artists

                                    Bob Stanley Presents 76 In The Shade

                                      “76 In The Shade” follows in the footsteps of Bob Stanley’s hugely successful comps for Ace, including “English Weather” and “The Tears Of Technology”. It suggests bright yellow sunshine, hot plastic car seats, cats lolloping on the lawn. A few tracks (Smokey Robinson, Cliff Richard, David Ruffin, Carmen McRae) act as necessary splashes of cooling water; most of them sound like it’s just too hot to move. Luckily, you don’t need to.

                                      The months without rain and airless days and nights might not have been something out of the ordinary in the Algarve or the south of France, but it was without precedent in Britain. The Summer of 1976 has remained a benchmark for long, hot summers – there may have been scorchers since, but none have seemed quite as relentless or enervating. The country melted into a collective puddle. “76 In The Shade” probably wasn’t anyone’s real life soundtrack of the year – that could have included Bowie’s “Station To Station” and Abba’s “Greatest Hits”. Instead, Saint Etienne’s Bob Stanley has put a compilation together that sonically evokes the summer of 1976 itself, its sweet heat and almost narcotic lethargy.

                                      Getting out of the sun, you might have sat inside with the radio on, and heard the dreamy wooziness of Liverpool Express’s ‘You Are My Love’, 10cc’s ‘I’m Mandy Fly Me’, or the Emotions’ ‘Flowers’. Or maybe you flopped out in front of the telly, where you heard an alternative summer soundtrack – the music libraries that provided the bulk of the testcard’s music gave us Simon Park’s minimal ‘Stoned Out’ and John Cameron’s deeply immersive ‘Liquid Sunshine’; the Californian jazzer Spike Janson provided the wordless vocal harmonies of ‘Walking So Free’.

                                      “76 In The Shade” follows in the footsteps of Bob Stanley’s hugely successful comps for Ace, including “English Weather” and “The Tears Of Technology”. It suggests bright yellow sunshine, hot plastic car seats, cats lolloping on the lawn. A few tracks (Smokey Robinson, Cliff Richard, David Ruffin, Carmen McRae) act as necessary splashes of cooling water; most of them sound like it’s just too hot to move. Luckily, you don’t need to.

                                      TRACK LISTING

                                      1. WALKING SO FREE - Spike Janson
                                      2. SUGAR SHUFFLE - Lynsey De Paul
                                      3. MIRACLES (SINGLE VERSION) - Jefferson Starship
                                      4. GET OUT OF TOWN - Smokey Robinson
                                      5. I’M MANDY FLY ME (ALBUM VERSION) - 10CC
                                      6. STONED OUT - Simon Park
                                      7. NOTHING TO REMIND ME - Cliff Richard
                                      8. DISCOVER ME - David Ruffin
                                      9. YOU’RE THE SONG (THAT I CAN’T STOP SINGING) - Hollywood Freeway
                                      10. YOU ARE MY LOVE - Liverpool Express
                                      11. LIQUID SUNSHINE - John Cameron
                                      12. NOT ON THE OUTSIDE - Sylvia
                                      13. STAY WITH ME - Blue Mink
                                      14. WILD MOUNTAIN HONEY - Steve Miller Band
                                      15. FALLIN’ IN LOVE - Hamilton, Joe Frank & Reynolds
                                      16. FLOWERS - The Emotions
                                      17. MONTREAL CITY - Azimuth
                                      18. ROCK’N’ROLL STAR - Barclay James Harvest
                                      19. MISS MY LOVE TODAY - Gilbert O’Sullivan
                                      20. MUSIC - Carmen McRae

                                      It wasn’t really a movement, barely even a moment, but the Daisy Age was an ethos that briefly permeated pop, R&B and hip hop. The name was coined by Long Island trio De La Soul; they claimed D.A.I.S.Y. stood for “da inner sound, y’all”, but then De La Soul said a lot of things. Playfulness and good humour were central to their 1989 debut album, which cast a long, multi-coloured shadow. The 90s, it promised, would be a lot easier going than the 80s.

                                      In Britain, the timing for De La Soul’s “3 Feet High And Rising” couldn’t have been better. The acid house explosion of 1988 would lead to a radical breaking down of musical barriers in 1989. Just 18 months earlier, snobbery had been so rife that Bomb The Bass’ ‘Beat Dis’ was faked as a US import (pressed in the States, then imported back) to get club play; by the summer of ’89, however, something as previously unhip as Chris Rea’s ‘Josephine’ could become a dancefloor hit and indie veterans Primal Scream would be reborn as space-seeking Sun Ra initiates and still taken seriously. Ecstasy was largely responsible, of course, and its associated look – loose clothing, dayglo colours, smiley faces – chimed with the positivity of rising New York rap acts the Jungle Brothers and De La Soul, both at the heart of a growing collective called Native Tongues.

                                      What was so new about De La Soul’s sound? Previously, sample material for hip hop had been almost exclusively taken from 60s and 70s soul and funk, especially from James Brown and his extended family – Bobby Byrd, Maceo Parker, Lyn Collins, the stuff of purists. The freewheeling collage of “3 Feet High And Rising” gleefully raided the non-U catalogues of Billy Joel and Hall & Oates; soul heroes Wilson Pickett and the Mad Lads were now abutting such unlikely material as the Turtles’ ‘You Showed Me’ and French Linguaphone lessons. The Invitations’ sweet, Drifters-like ‘Written On The Wall’ provided the hook for De La Soul’s first single ‘Plug Tunin’’ which, along with follow-up ‘Potholes In My Lawn’, referenced “the daisy age”. With the album including a cover of Bob Dorough’s ‘Three Is The Magic Number’ from Schoolhouse Rock – a song every American kid knew from Sunday morning TV – the essence of Sesame Street was everywhere.

                                      By 1989 hip hop had made major inroads in Britain with rock fans (via Run DMC) and pubescent teens (the Beastie Boys), while NME writers had voted Public Enemy’s “It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back” the best album of 1988. Still, it had an air of exclusivity, with Tim Westwood its mirthless UK gatekeeper. De La Soul were also fans of Public Enemy, the Beastie Boys and Run DMC; they were fans in general, and threw their love of music into the blender, giving more time to melodies and mind-expanding samples while most contemporary rap records still revolved around the biggest sounding beats.

                                      Above all, De La Soul were welcoming. They had grown up with their parents’ eclectic musical taste, a TV culture grab bag, and black radio stations that played Hall & Oates and Steely Dan alongside the Spinners and Brass Construction. They had also attended the same high school as producer and Stetsasonic member Prince Paul who, intimidatingly, was two years above them. He knew their faces but it wasn’t until he heard a demo of ‘Plug Tunin’’ that he realised they were all on the same wavelength; working with their rough sketch, Paul added a sample from Billy Joel’s ‘Stiletto’ into the mix.

                                      In 1990, the third Native Tongues act to release an album was A Tribe Called Quest, and “People’s Instinctive Travels And The Paths Of Rhythm” was heavily indebted to “3 Feet High”’s airy nature. The Native Tongues’ charismatic aura spread west to the Bay Area’s similarly minded Hieroglyphics crew (Del Tha Funkeé Homosapien, Souls Of Mischief); Canada’s Dream Warriors used the “3 Feet High” colour palette and, borrowing Count Basie and Quincy Jones riffs, scored a brace of major UK hits; Naughty By Nature were mentored by Native Tongues heroine Queen Latifah, while Londoner Monie Love was also adopted by the collective, resulting in her Grammy-nominated ‘It’s A Shame (My Sister)’.

                                      A Tribe Called Quest’s second album, “The Low End Theory”, would pick up the baton, giving a platform for and inspiration to Leaders Of The New School (who included future superstar Busta Rhymes) and the abstract technique of Brand Nubian. Meanwhile, the Jungle Brothers’ second album, “Done By The Forces Of Nature”, was in essence a concept album about Africa, fusing hip hop with jazz, doo wop, soul, Harlem – a new direction for the Native Tongues, away from ‘Multiplication Rock’, bubble writing and the gently psychedelic.

                                      As hip hop rapidly became a bigger commercial concern, rights owners smelt money and – for the rest of the 90s – made sample clearance unfeasibly expensive. Robbed of their pick-and-mix approach, some Daisy Age-era acts moved towards consciousness and a jazz-leaning live feel, which down the line would lead to the rise of Arrested Development, and beyond them the Fugees and the Roots; meanwhile, on the West Coast, the gut-churning violence and misogyny of Dr Dre’s “The Chronic” took rap to a whole new commercial level. Neither direction, sadly, would involve much use of Sesame Street, Turtles samples, or magic numbers.

                                      “Paris In The Spring” is a collection of the new music, put together by Saint Etienne’s Bob Stanley and Pete Wiggs, that emerged from France between 1968 and the mid-70s, an extraordinary blend of several previously independent strains – French chanson and yé-yé, American jazz and funk, British chamber pop – shot through with the era’s underlying mixture of optimism, uncertainty and darkness. This is the first collection of its kind, released on the 50th anniversary of the Paris uprising.

                                      Serge Gainsbourg – a jazz pianist with a chanson past and a pop present – was in a position to play a key role in soundtracking France in flux over the next five years. His “Histoire de Melody Nelson”, with its heavily atmospheric arrangements by Jean-Claude Vannier, was the acme of this new, unsettling French sound. “Paris In The Spring” includes other equally dazzling Vannier arrangements (for Léonie) and Gainsbourg compositions (for Jane Birkin and Mireille Darc).

                                      Prior to 1968, 60s French pop had been dominated by yé-yé, the country’s unique brand of upbeat pop, a world of primary colours, minijupes and discothèques (a French invention, after all). Its stars either faded fast after May ’68 or adapted to the new era: Jacques Dutronc (‘Le Métaphore’) and France Gall (‘Chanson Pour Que Tu M’aimes un Peu’) discovered a moody side they had previously kept hidden, while Françoise Hardy released the Brazilian-influenced, after-hours classic “La Question”, from which we have picked ‘Viens’.

                                      New bands like Triangle emerged, influenced by Soft Machine and Gong who became regulars on the Paris club scene. French library music from Janko Nilovic and film soundtracks (François De Roubaix, Karl-Heinz Schäfer) reflected the era’s edginess. All are represented on “Paris In The Spring”, making it a continental cousin to Stanley and Wiggs’s hugely popular 2017 Ace compilation “English Weather”

                                      TRACK LISTING

                                      1. LA VICTIME - Karl Heinz Schäfer
                                      2. HÉLICOPTÈRE - Mireille Darc
                                      3. LES AVENTURES EXTRAORDINAIRES D'UN BILLET DE BANQUE - Bernard Lavilliers
                                      4. ROSES AND REVOLVERS - Janko Nilovic
                                      5. L'ELU - Ilous & Decuyper
                                      6. LA METAPHORE - Jacques Dutronc
                                      7. DOMMAGE QUE TU SOIS MORT - Brigitte Fontaine
                                      8. LES GARDE VIOLENT AU SECOURS DU ROI - Jean-Claude Vannier
                                      9. LOOKING FOR YOU - Nino Ferrer
                                      10. CHANSON D'UN JOUR D'HIVER - Cortex
                                      11. VIENS - Françoise Hardy
                                      12. COULEURS - Léonie
                                      13. LESLIE SIMONE - William Sheller
                                      14. LITANIES - Triangle
                                      15. BALEINES - François De Roubaix
                                      16. ENCORE LUI - Jane Birkin
                                      17. EVELYNE - Serge Gainsbourg
                                      18. LE BAL DES LAZES - Michel Polnareff
                                      19. LILETH - Léonie
                                      20. YSTOR - Ys
                                      21. CHANSON POUR QUE TU M'AIMES UN PEU - France Gall
                                      22. LA VICTIME - Karl Heinz Schäfer
                                      23. LA CHANSON D'HÉLÈNE - Romy Schneider & Michel Piccoli

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