Centre of Gravity

Centre of Gravity
1985 Stride
Cheshire, England, United Kingdom

Side 1:

  1. Pacific 231 – Psycho Moon
  2. Pacific 231 – Gare De L’est 1943
  3. The Dangerous Bros – On 45
  4. Vox Populi – Pygmies in the Park
  5. Vox Populi – Mind
  6. Vox Populi – Glassy Stare
  7. Face in the Crowd – Clown
  8. Face in the Crowd – Love is Like a Cancer

Side 2:

  1. Griff – Wrant – U – Wrant
  2. Griff – Poser
  3. Griff – Match’s Mate
  4. Celestial Orgy – Pig to the Abbatoir
  5. Celestial Orgy – Feminist
  6. Celestial Orgy – Maths
  7. Inlaws and Outlaws – Foot Inside Your Door
  8. Face in the Crowd – Summer Fool
  9. Face in the Crowd – A Strong Voice
  10. Face in the Crowd – Justice

This is a mysterious compilation from Stride that serves up several songs from mostly noise/industrial/experimental bands – with a few exceptions. So who is on it? First off is Pacific 231, a noise/experimental project by Pierre Jolivet of Paris that has been going since the early 80s. If the band name sounds kind of familiar to you, Pacific 231 has been on some split albums with Psyclones, also an early noise/industrial band that was composed of Brian Ladd (aka Blackhouse) and Julie Frith. I can’t find these songs listed on any Pacific 231 releases, so they might be exclusive to this comp? I can’t find any information on The Dangerous Bros, but they appear to be an experimental free-form band with guitars. Vox Populi has also collaborated with Pacific 231, but is a band from France that has been around since the early 80s. They have an experimental noise sound as well, with some vocals and instruments. Face in the Crowd has released many tapes in the Christian tape underground, usually of a more experimental band sound, with some spoken word parts, some sung parts, random instrument playing, etc. Griff has also been featured here before, but he is experimental folk rock with an extreme British sense of humor. Don’t know much about Celestial Orgy, but it seems they only have compilation appearances listed on Discogs. They appear to be the closest thing to a rock band on here – definitely some alternative guitar and drums, but still more experimental than most alt rock. When they hit the high pitched vocals, it almost reminds me of Danielson. Inlaws and Outlaws is another band I can’t find much on, but they also are the most traditional industrial/electronic band on the compilation (although many others use industrial elements).

Paul Johnson – Escape to Reality

Paul Johnson
Escape to Reality
1984 Hepcat (HC 10)
Vista, California, USA

Paul Johnson – Guitars, bass, and linndrums

Side 1:

  1. Scouse
  2. The Magnificant
  3. Front Edge of Time
  4. Before the Feasttime
  5. Kingdom Come
  6. Gird Thy Sword On

Side 2:

  1. Stand Up, Stand Up for Jesus
  2. The Truth
  3. Joyful Blues
  4. La Tierra Santa
  5. Escape to Reality

This is an early release by Paul Johnson, who went on to release a couple of albums for Frontline Records. In fact, a few of the songs here were re-recorded for those albums. This is instrumental surf rock, from a time in the early 80s when the sound was enjoying a sort of revival in pop music. I kind of remember that time, but it was a short blip. I do not know much about this genre in general, but you can tell that Johnson is a skilled guitarist. This is not the shred guitar instrumental music that many are used to with metal instrumental albums. It is surf rock, and a good example of such. Seems that Johnson had a lot of releases like this as well. You can get a CD with this tape and bonus tracks online.

Paul Johnson is currently battling cancer and could use your help.

Timigen – Demo

1982 (no label)

  1. Song for Timigen
  2. Birth of Venus
  3. REO Speedwagon – High Infidelity
  4. Birth of Venus – reprise
  5. Song of Summer
  6. Chariots of Fire – Vangelis
  7. Inward Thoughts Displayed
  8. Coke (It’s the Real Thing)
  9. Keyboard Playtime
  10. Banshee (Hear the Cry)
  11. Running (007 Type)
  12. Mundane Joy
  13. Brothers of the Spirit

This is an interesting piece of underground music history – it is basically someone playing the piano for several songs, but that someone is also Scott, who was the person behind Dethdoor. He sent in a couple of tapes that were released in the underground (Dethdoor and Erin Peacechild), as well as several tapes of unreleased music. This is the first one in chronological order. It might not appeal to many people, but if you ever took piano lessons (like I did), you probably had some practice sessions like this. You would play through some songs that you knew, sometimes tinkering with them, sometimes making up some free-form notes that you ended up calling a song because you liked how it sounded. Makes me wish I had recorded some of my old practice sessions. So we will see where the progression goes from here – Dethdoor is very different from this 🙂 But due to my background with piano practice, I enjoy music like this.