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THE CHAMELEONS

The Chameleons

Return Of The Roughnecks (Live At The Ritz Manchester)

    Almost 35 years on, The Chameleons return once again, to one of Manchester’s most iconic venues, playing the original set they played that evening...

    The atmospheric post-vocalist/bassist Mark Burgess began with the Cliches, guitarists Reg Smithies and Dave Fielding arrived from the Years, and drummer John Lever (who quickly replaced founding member Brian Schofield) originated with the Politicians. After establishing themselves with a series of high-profile BBC sessions, the Chameleons signed to Epic and debuted with the EP Nostalgia, a tense, moody set produced by Steve Lillywhite which featured the single 'In Shreds.'.... The quartet was soon released from its contract with Epic, but then signed to Statik and returned in 1983 with the band's first full-length effort, Script of the Bridge. What Does Anything Mean? Basically followed in 1985, and with it came a new reliance on stylish production; following its release, the Chameleons signed to Geffen and emerged the following year with Strange Times. The dark, complex record proved to be the Chameleons' finale, however, when they split following the sudden death of manager Tony Fletcher; while Burgess and Lever continued on in the Sun & the Moon, Smithies and Fielding later reunited in the Reegs. In 1993, Burgess surfaced with his proper solo album Zima Junction. He and his band the Sons of God toured America the following year.

    STAFF COMMENTS

    Barry says: There's no mistaking The Chameleons, and they're in fine fettle here, smashing through a perfectly performed set of classics and sounding every bit the band we remember at Manchester's iconic Ritz.

    TRACK LISTING

    Side 1
    Silence Sea & Sky
    Pleasure & Pain
    Here Today
    Intrigue In Tangiers

    Side 2
    Singing Rule Britannia
    Return Of The Roughnecks
    Perfume Garden
    Less Than Human

    Side 3
    Nostalgia
    Second Skin
    One Flesh

    Side 4
    Home Is Where The Heart Is
    PS Goodbye
    In Shreds
    A Person Isn’t Safe

    7”
    Looking Inwardly
    Don’t Fall

    CD Edition:
    Silence Sea & Sky
    Pleasure & Pain
    Here Today
    Intrigue In Tangiers
    Singing Rule Britannia
    Return Of The
    Roughnecks
    Perfume Garden
    Less Than Human
    Nostalgia
    Second Skin
    One Flesh
    Home Is Where The Heart Is
    PS Goodbye
    In Shreds
    A Person Isn’t Safe
    Looking Inwardly
    Don’t Fall

    The Chameleons

    Where Are You? EP

      Chameleons are releasing their first new material in more than twenty years – this is ‘gig only’ vinyl, but Piccadilly Records has exclusively secured 100 copies.

      An artful combination that embraces their past work while opening their arms to creative expansion, ‘Where Are You?’ slots neatly into the band’s oeuvre. Led with an arresting trademark guitar hook, Burgess’ familiar and immediately recognisable vocals soar effortlessly over the tight precision of the rhythm section.

      “It’s exciting to finally be putting out fresh Chameleons material for the first time in over twenty years, although initially I found it quite daunting,” says frontman Mark Burgess. “The question about new music is one I had been asked the most by people coming to our gigs, many of whom weren’t even born when our previous records were made. “

      “By the time we’d got through Covid, Reg and I had a very solid band in place, people whose talent we trusted to bring out the best in whatever ideas we were able to get off the ground. For the first time in years, I felt we were a proper band capable of creating some interesting and exciting music.”

      Couple with the shimmering and mesmerising ‘Endlessly Falling’ and contemplative acoustic ballad ‘Forever’, the new EP acts as a teaser for an upcoming album entitled ‘Arctic Moon’ that is planned for late 2024.

      “We’ve managed to transcend the confines of our own legacy and finally forge something fresh, “ adds Burgess.

      Chameleons are touring extensively throughout the year, including UK, Europe, North America and the Far East. They return to Manchester for a homecoming show at Albert Hall on Saturday December 14th .

      TRACK LISTING

      Where Are You?
      Endlessly Falling
      Forever

      The Chameleons

      Script Of The Bridge - 40th Anniversary Coloured Vinyl Edition

        To celebrate 40 years since its original release, a special coloured vinyl edition of The Chameleons seminal debut album ‘Script of the Bridge’. This brand-new package contains two heavyweight (180g) vinyl discs (transparent orange and blue) plus digital download code, with printed inner sleeves and new artwork by guitarist Reg Smithies.

        Script of the Bridge was restored and re-mastered for vinyl at Abbey Road Studios, London.The restoration project was undertaken by production team Guy Massey and Steve Rooke, who received a Grammy Award for their work on the Beatles Box Set. Guy Massey quotes Script of the Bridge as an influential album on his career.

        Forty years after its original release, Script of the Bridge still proves to be that very rarest of records. One, that despite the merciless passage of time, has lost none of its ability to still awe and astonish the devoted, while enchanting the adoration of new listeners all over the world, for many years to come.

        TRACK LISTING

        Side A
        Don't Fall
        Here Today
        Monkeyland

        Side B
        Second Skin
        Up The Down Escalator
        Less Than Human

        Side C
        Pleasure And Pain
        Thursday's Child
        As High As You Can Go

        Side D
        A Person Isn't Safe Anywhere These Days
        Paper Tigers
        View From A Hill

        The Chameleons

        Tony Fletcher Walked On Water EP - 2022 Remastered Edition

          A re-mastered version of The Chameleons ultra rare ‘Tony Fletcher Walked on Water” EP is available now on ltd edition coloured vinyl and cd.

          The 4 tracks were recorded in 1987 shortly before the band split and were originally intended as a follow-up to the Geffen album Strange Times. Considered by many to be among The Chameleons’ finest songs, the EP was originally released (and then quickly withdrawn from sale) more than thirty years ago. The new version is released with the full co-operation of the band. 


          TRACK LISTING

          Side A: Is It Any Wonder / Free For All
          Side B: The Healer / Denim And Curls

          The Chameleons

          Strange Times - Black Edition

            The Chameleons (arguably the best band to come out of Manchester) with their critically acclaimed classic third album, ‘Strange Times’. Recorded on the legendary Geffen label, it sees the band’s atmospheric post punk anthems with soaring guitars and driving rhythms at their peak, and Mark Burgess’s compelling vocals coming together to form a wall of the most beautiful noise you’ve ever heard.

            In a post on his Instagram account in 2018, Oasis guitarist Noel Gallagher cited ‘Strange Times’ as an early influence on his songwriting: “I’d forgotten how much this album meant to me. It came out in ‘86. I was 19!! I’ve been listening to it every day since and I have to say it’s blown my mind… again! It must have influenced my early years as a songwriter because I can hear ME in it everywhere!”

            Burgess later said, “‘Strange Times’ is my favourite. Personally, I believe it was the best lyrical work I’d done with the band and some of the best vocal performances, and I think the Chameleons really began to mature and move forward with this album…”

            ‘Strange Times’ was praised by the critics. Ian Gittins of Melody Maker called it “a marvellous departure” from their previous work and “a wonderful record.” Robert Palmer of The New York Times described it as “the band’s most inventive and winning album yet, and as a fine a record as any pop-rock guitar band has made this year. it should delight just about anyone.”

            The Chameleons have long been named as an influence on bands such as The Flaming Lips, The Killers, The Editors and Smashing Pumpkins.

            The album has been mastered by Steve Hall, whose works include The Flaming Lips’ ‘The Soft Bulletin’, Janes Addiction’s ‘Nothing Shocking’, Tom Petty ‘Full Moon Fever’, Green Day ‘Nimrod’, Blondie ‘Parallel Lines’ and ‘No Exit’, Alice in Chains ‘Dirt’ and The Beach Boys’ ‘Pet Sounds’.

            TRACK LISTING

            Mad Jack
            Caution
            Tears
            Soul In Isolation
            Swamp Thing
            Time/End Of Time
            Seriocity
            In Answer
            Childhood
            I’ll Remember
            Tears (full Arrangement)
            Ever After
            Paradiso
            Inside Out
            John I’m Only Dancing
            Tomorrow Never Knows

            The Chameleons

            Dali's Picture / Auffuhrung In Berlin

              Available on vinyl for the first time in thirty years this double LP showcases The Chameleons in the early stages of their career, bursting with unbridled passion and raw energy as they explore and develop their distinctive sound. A sound that influenced a generation of musicians and still reverberates across the globe today with fans old and new.

              The LP is presented on 2 x heavyweight coloured vinyl discs in a wide spine sleeve featuring a brand new cover drawing by guitarist Reg Smithies. All tracks have been expertly re-mastered for this release. Also available as double CD format (jewel case).

              Disc 1 – Dali’s Picture – is a collection of early studio recordings that pre-date Script of the Bridge and features early versions of well-known songs such as Monkeyland, Nostalgia and Less Than Human as well as Dreams in Celluloid, an early take on Second Skin with entirely alternative lyrics.

              Disc 2 – Auffuhrung in Berlin is a live concert from 1983 showing the band on full throttle belting out songs from Script of the Bridge and showcasing early versions of songs that would later appear on the band’s second studio album – tracks such as ‘Singing Rule Britannia’, ‘One Flesh; and ‘Perfume Garden’ performed here with many interesting lyrical differences. 


              TRACK LISTING

              Disc 1:
              Everyday And Crucified
              Monkeyland
              Dreams In Celluloid
              Love Is
              The Fan
              The Bellows
              Looking Inwardly
              Dali’s Picture
              Nostalgia
              Less Than Human
              Things I Wish I’d Said

              Disc 2:
              Less Than Human
              Paper Tigers
              Monkeyland
              Thursday’s Child
              Second Skin
              Pleasure And Pan
              Singing Rule Britannia
              Perfume Garden
              One Flesh
              In Shreds
              Splitting In Two

              The Chameleons

              The Chameleons Live At The Camden Palace

                Recorded in 1984 for a special performance for a satellite TV broadcast, this iconic gig at The Camden Palace features Middleton’s finest on top of their game and includes songs taken from ‘Script of the Bridge’ & ‘What Does Anything Mean? Basically’...

                Released on vinyl for the first time, this album also includes 4 bonus tracks from the Arsenal concert, which was recorded for an independent Catalonian local tv channel, in 1985...

                The cover art has been exclusively designed by Chams guitarist Red Smithies, who designed all official Chameleons studio releases.

                TRACK LISTING

                Side 1
                1 Don't Fall 4:14
                2 Intrigue In Tangiers 3:22
                3 Monkeyland 4:29
                4 Second Skin 5:40

                Side 2
                5 Singing Rule Britannia (While The Walls Close In) 3:40
                6 Pleasure And Pain 4:04
                7 Return Of The Roughnecks 3:28
                8 A Person Isn't Safe 4:47

                Side 3
                9 In Shreds 3:59
                10 Splitting In Two 6:28 (ATV Cover Version)
                11 Here Today 3:55
                12 Thursday's Child 3:16
                13 Paper Tiger 4:01

                Side 4 - Bonus Tracks From The Arsenal Gig, Recorded For An Independent Catalonian TV Show Called "temps Estranys" (strange Times..!).
                14. Return Of The Roughnecks
                15. Less Than Human
                16 Splitting In Two
                17.Here Today

                The Chameleons

                Elevated Living - Live In Manchester, London And Spain

                  • Live extravaganza from post-punk “sonic cathedrals” (©The Independent), The Chameleons featuring live sets recorded in the ‘80s across two CDs and one DVD

                  • Featuring two live shows at The Hacienda and Camden Palace that have never been previously released on CD and an earlier set at the Gallery Club

                  • Plus a DVD featuring all three shows and an episode of Catalan TV programme Arsenal devoted to the band

                  Formed in Greater Manchester in 1981, The Chameleons pioneered post punk, combining Reg Smithies’ and Dave Fielding’s layered, shimmering guitars, drummer John Lever’s tribal rhythms and Mark Burgess’ driving bass and impassioned vocals with lyrics often reflecting the anxiety and alienation of the Thatcher era.

                  “All tribal percussion and jagged guitar shards straining to frame vast vistas with one hand while clutching their alienated urban roots with the other.” NME

                  The Chameleons are an acknowledged influence on future generations of indie and alternative rock bands including Stone Roses, Oasis, The Charlatans, Smashing Pumpkins, The Flaming Lips, The Killers, The Horrors, The National and Interpol.

                  ‘Elevated Living’ includes their two celebrated hometown Manchester shows, ‘Live At The Gallery Club’ (1982) and ‘Live At The Hacienda’ (1983) and their superb show filmed for the ITV, ‘Live At The Camden Palace’ (1984) on both CD and DVD. The latter two shows are presented on CD for the first time.

                  The DVD also includes an episode of Catalan TV programme Arsenal devoted entirely to the band. Broadcast in January 1986, it mixes four tracks taken from a live show at the Discoteca 666 in Barcelona from 1985 (also on CD) plus studio performances and interviews with singer/bassist Mark Burgess and drummer John Lever.

                  The Gallery show includes rarities ‘Nathan’s Phase’ and ‘Things I Wished I’d Said’, while The Hacienda includes early versions of ‘A Person Isn’t Safe Anywhere These Days’ under the working title of ‘Men Of Steel’ and ‘Thursday’s Child’ as ‘Years Ago’.

                  TRACK LISTING

                  DISC 1:
                  LIVE AT THE GALLERY CLUB,
                  MANCHESTER, 18.12.82
                  1 PAPER TIGERS
                  2 NATHAN’S PHASE
                  3 DON’T FALL
                  4 PLEASURE & PAIN
                  5 HERE TODAY
                  6 IN SHREDS
                  7 UP THE DOWN ESCALATOR
                  8 SECOND SKIN
                  9 MONKEYLAND
                  10 AS HIGH AS YOU CAN GO
                  11 THINGS I WISH I’D SAID
                  12 VIEW FROM A HILL
                  LIVE AT THE HACIENDA,
                  MANCHESTER, 28.1.83
                  13 PAPER TIGERS
                  14 PLEASURE & PAIN
                  15 MEN OF STEEL
                  16 YEARS AGO
                  17 IN SHREDS
                  18 DON’T FALL
                  19 SECOND SKIN

                  DISC 2:
                  LIVE AT THE CAMDEN PALACE,
                  LONDON 9.11.84
                  1 DON’T FALL
                  2 INTRIGUE IN TANGIERS
                  3 MONKEYLAND
                  4 SECOND SKIN
                  5 SINGING RULE BRITANNIA
                  (WHILE THE WALLS CLOSE IN)
                  6 PLEASURE & PAIN
                  7 RETURN OF THE
                  ROUGHNECKS
                  8 A PERSON ISN’T SAFE
                  ANYWHERE THESE DAYS
                  9 IN SHREDS
                  10 SPLITTING IN TWO
                  11 HERE TODAY
                  12 THURSDAY’S CHILD
                  13 PAPER TIGERS
                  ARSENAL: LIVE AT DISCOTECA
                  666, BARCELONA 7.6.85
                  14 HERE TODAY
                  15 RETURN OF THE ROUGHNECKS
                  16 LESS THAN HUMAN
                  17 SPLITTING IN TWO

                  DISC 3:
                  DVD: LIVE AT THE GALLERY CLUB, MANCHESTER, 18.12.82 TRACKLISTING AS DISC ONE
                  LIVE AT THE HACIENDA, MANCHESTER, 28.1.83 TRACKLISTING AS DISC ONE
                  LIVE AT THE CAMDEN PALACE, LONDON, 9.11.84 TRACKLISTING AS DISC TWO

                  ARSENAL: (SPANISH TV) 1985
                  1 DON’T FALL
                  2 SINGING RULE BRITANNIA
                  (WHILE THE WALLS CLOSE IN)
                  3 HERE TODAY
                  4 RETURN OF THE ROUGHNECKS
                  5 MONKEYLAND
                  6 LESS THAN HUMAN
                  7 PLEASURE & PAIN
                  8 SECOND SKIN
                  9 HOME IS WHERE THE HEART IS
                  10 IN SHREDS
                  11 SPLITTING IN TWO
                  NTSC DVD Visual Content.
                  FSK - 0

                  The Chameleons

                  What Does Anything Mean Basically? - Remastered Edition

                    The Chameleons second studio album ‘What Does Anything Mean? Basically’
                    re-mastered for vinyl in Spring 2018.

                    The album is presented on heavyweight clear vinyl in a gatefold sleeve with printed inner bag. The iconic cover art has been re-worked and updated by guitarist Reg Smithies.

                    This packaging is restricted to one thousand copies, with any future runs only being available in regular sleeve.

                    TRACK LISTING

                    Side One
                    Silence Sea And Sky
                    Perfume Garden
                    Intrigue In Tangiers
                    Return Of The Roughnecks
                    Singing Rule Britannia (While The Walls Close In)

                    Side Two
                    On The Beach
                    Looking Inwardly
                    One Flesh
                    Home Is Where The Heart Is
                    P.S. Goodbye


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