It's often a battle of mind not to compare new music with old or in this case 2015's album releases with 2015's reissues and to do so would be overlooking so many aspects of how modern culture has changed in recent years. That said I find myself today going through my recent vinyl purchases and finding a large portion of it to be reissue. Rather than blame that on the lack of quality new music, which is certainly not the case, let's celebrate a different period of music which strikes chords that maybe cannot be recreated today.
Fatima Yamaha's 12" reissue of What's A Girl To Do on the Dekmantel label earlier this year sold out in the first two weeks of release garnering a buzz which it had not seen on original release back in 2004. Although only an 11 year wait it's pop-inspired synth melodies and ability to dispense of a natural techno groove have managed to grab DJ's and pundits right where it matters. Repress of reissue is on the way!
Disco Club was originally released in 1978 and is the brainchild of French producer extraordinaire Bernard Fevre who was clearly light years ahead of his time. When the extremely rare disco masterpiece found its way into the hands of non-other than Aphex Twin it gained some heavy road-testing and the response really only allowed for one thing and French indie Alter K recently reissued the complete LP for the first time.
With the exception of WITCH, Zambian rock is not an existence I claim to know anything about but thanks to Now Again Records (Stones Throw) I managed to lay my lucky ears all over Kitwe five-piece Amanaz gem 'Africa' earlier this year. I don't have the most vivid imagination at the best of times but Amanaz mixing those guitars in Zambia back in the mid 1970's really has my mind running a ‘wild. It was even recorded in two separate versions. One dry, with the vocals and drums mixed loud, the other slathered in reverb, with the vocals and drums disappearing into the mix, and with the guitar solos mixed much louder.
Early 4AD band Rema Rema were shunted firmly back into the mix of things this year as “Entry” the last remaining track from the twelve inch "Wheel In The Roses" recorded back in 1979 was reissued by small UK Punk label Inflammable Material. A definitive mould of brutality and synth wave is prevalent on this single and is one of my finds of the year. Unfortunately the rarity of this record means that I can't find a digital copy of "Entry" to share with you but the track below was off the same original EP.
Swans unquestionable industry is one of the most identifiable in music and has seen them become one of the all-time great cult bands. Few 80's bands still manage to churn out albums as good 2014's "To Be Kind" and although their standards have never dropped, record store day release from Mute of Swans debut EP from '82 was a long time coming. A welcome reminder of where today's band started.