Associates – Sulk (1982)

Not the kind of thing you’d normally expect P. Asbo to DJ*, but there’s something compelling about this excessive, very British (well, Scottish), very 80s, very dramatic, very everything music–it’s got bite. Okay, like just about every other outre pop act from these islands around the time, a certain Dame’s shadow looms large in terms of oblique lyrical flourishes, edgy, synthetic music and some fairly excessive crooning. Although undeniably intense, Sulk possesses thin, trebly sound overall with keyboard synthesisers to the fore; it’s worth noting, however, that they’ve given some latitude for these mostly uptempo performances to a capable and imaginative drummer here which brings more life to proceedings than we often find in like records.

A note on the cover: I laughed to see they’ve caught the chap on the right mid blink makin’ look high as dem kite.

*Although, like E. Plekz, I’ve also got the “best” version of The Affectionate Punch.

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Published in: on February 3, 2012 at 12:07 pm  Comments (2)  

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  1. i liked “club country” at the time it was a hit, but not to the point where i investigated them further (consequent single releases were disapointing which probably put me off)… i did pick up a “best of” cd at a car-boot many years later, but apart from an excellent instrumental track called “grecian 2000” sadly for me there was nothing that came remotely close to “CC”…

    also around that time i caught a TOTP 2 showing of them doing “CC” and it was a fantastic outrageous performance featuring the lovely martha ladley of muffins fame playing air-fiddle! it’s on youtube, along with an even more OTT appearance with billy in an s&m-style vest/peaked cap ensemble and martha in a wet-look swimsuit, plus a load more glamourous violinists – they don’t make ’em like that anymore!

    bassist michael dempsey who is featured prominently in the recording and videos (more so than core member alan rankine!) also applied his distinctive style to another brilliant early 80’s synth-pop track by the lotus eaters called “you don’t need someone new”…

  2. I don’t remember the band from BITD, so have only experienced them “out of context”; one misses out on momentum and shared experience, but is also not distracted by hype.


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