Sideway Look is an indie rock band from Edinburgh in Scotland . The band formed in 1980 and combined rough and melodic alternative rock and New Wave oriented rock and pop songs with original and atypical instrumentation and folk elements.
The band line-up was Colin Thom ( guitar , accordion , keyboards , vocals ), Brian Smith ( vocals guitar , keyboards ), John Baird ( bass , keyboards , vocals ), Johnny O Neill ( keyboard ) and Iain Hardie ( drums , percussion ).
Sideway Look were often compared to their Scottish contemporaries like Aztec Camera , Runrig , Big Country or Simple Minds , and even with the early phase of the Irish rock group U2. With such varied comparisons, it was obvious that Sideway Look were not able to be squeezed into any musical genre and subsequently never found the success they deserved.
Their first eponymous first album was recorded in 1984 in Germany for Virgin Records. It was produced by Ian Taylor. The album produced three singles “Knowing You From Today” and “Tell Me Tonight”, both released in 1984 and “Til the Bitter End”, released in 1985.
The 12″ single for “Til the Bitter End” added two non-LP tracks.
Interestingly, the most complete biography I could find on the band was on Wikipedia Germany and to date, none of their releases have been heard on CD.
Spear of Destiny is a British rock band, established in 1983 by singer and songwriter Kirk Brandon (born 3 August 1956, Westminster, London) and bassist Stan Stammers (born 19 May 1961). It had an ever-changing line-up through the years.
The original line-up consisted of Kirk Brandon, Stan Stammers, Chris Bell, and Lascelles James, in late 1983 this line-up was superseded by Dolphin Taylor on drums, Alan St. Clair on guitar, John Lennard on sax, and Neil Pyzer on keyboards and additional saxophone. In 1984 John Lennard was replaced by Mickey Donnelly on Saxophone.
In 1987, Spear Of Destiny released their fourth studio album Outland on 10 Records.
It included the hit single “Never Take Me Alive” which reached no.14 in the UK singles charts in 1987 – Spear of Destiny’s only Top 20 hit in the UK. Three other singles were released from the album, namely “Strangers In Our Town”, “Was That You?” and “The Traveller”, all making the UK Top 50.
Love Kills is Freddie Mercury’s first song recorded as a solo artist.
It was originally used in Giorgio Moroder’s restoration and edit of the 1927 silent film Metropolis, as part of the movie’s new soundtrack. The movie was nominated at the 1985 Razzie Awards for “Worst Original Score”, and the song itself was nominated for “Worst Original Song”, even though the single reached #10 on the UK Singles Chart.
Love Kills was written by Giorgio Moroder and Freddie Mercury and the 12″ single included a Moroder instrumental from the Metropolis movie.
Freddie Mercury – Love Kills (Extended Version) 5:21
Giorgio Moroder – Rotwang’s Party (Robot Dance) 5:23
With the news that the first Naked Eyes album “Burning Bridges” is about to be released on CD for the first time in the UK with 12″ mixes, I thought it would be a good time to visit the duo’s second album “Fuel For The Fire”.
Fuel for the Fire was Naked Eyes’ 1984 follow-up album to their successful début. The band had Top 40 success with the first single off the album, “(What) In the Name of Love”, produced by Arthur Baker, which reached #39 in the US on the Billboard Hot 100 and, in a remix by Baker, #35 on the Dance chart. The album peaked at #83 on the Billboard Top 200 Albums chart.
While a modest hit, it had not matched the commercial and critical success of their debut; in their home country of the UK, neither the album nor its single had charted. Baker remixed another track he had produced for the duo, “Sacrifice”, but the record company never released a followup to the Top 40 lead single and Naked Eyes disbanded following the underwhelming reception.
(What) In The Name Of Love (Extended Version) 6:03
René & Angela were an 1980s R&B duo consisting of artist/producers René Moore and Angela Winbush. The group dissolved by the mid 1980s. Both went on to successful solo careers as performers, songwriters, and producers. Moore later went on to form Multi-Media Communications, which operated radio stations from 2008 to 2012. Winbush went on to score five top ten R&B hits as a solo artist.
The duo’s fourth and final album together was titled “Street Called Desire” and would reach #5 on the US R&B charts and was certified platinum in the US.
The follow-up single to the #1 US R&B smash “Save Your Love For #1” was “I’ll Be Good” and it was another major hit for the duo, hitting #4 on the US R&B and #7 on US Dance.
“I’ll Be Good” actually outperformed “Save Your Love For #1” in the pop charts, reaching #47 in the US and #22 in the UK.
The second Tina Turner track on the album “Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome” , “One of the Living” (U.S. #15), was the film’s opening titles song, produced by Mike Chapman and composed by Holly Knight – the team behind “Better Be Good To Me” – and also credited to Knight’s band Device on both the film’s end titles and the original vinyl album. Released as the follow-up single to “We Don’t Need Another Hero”, “One of the Living” was also remixed for both the 7″ and 12″ singles. The 7″ Remix, 7″ Dub, 12″ Special Remix, 12″ Dub and 12″ Instrumental versions, co-produced and mixed by Steve Thompson and Michael Barbiero, all remain unreleased on CD. “One of the Living” won Turner a Grammy Award in 1985 for Best Rock Vocal Performance, Female.
The single became a hit in America, peaking in the top 20 of the US Hot 100, and enjoyed some success in Europe. “One of the Living” won Turner a Grammy Award for “Best Rock Vocal Performance, Female”. The song also appears on Turner’s UK hits compilation The Platinum Collection.
Regina Richards (born April 22, 1954), better known by her stage name Regina, is an American dance music singer born in Brooklyn, New York. She is best known for her hit “Baby Love,” which reached Number 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1986. It peaked in the UK Singles Chart at #50 the same year.
Regina graduated from Marymount Manhattan College in 1975 with a degree in theatre. She began her musical career as part of the New York punk and new-wave scenes. Her first single “Tyger” was released by A&M Records in 1980. She then released an album as Regina Richards and Red Hot on A&M, followed by a solo single, “Deep Dreaming,” for that label.
Initially, Regina only wished to pursue success in the mainstream style as a songwriter, with the idea that her work as a performer would remain in an alternative music vein. Regina co-wrote “Baby Love” with frequent Madonna collaborator Stephen Bray; Regina wanted another person to sing the song, however her record label, Atlantic Records, told Regina to sing the song herself.
“Girls Just Want to Have Fun” is a song originally written by Robert Hazard and made famous by singer Cyndi Lauper. It was the first major single released by Lauper as a solo artist and the lead-off single from her debut album She’s So Unusual. Lauper’s version gained recognition as a feminist anthem, an award-winning video and a worldwide hit. It has been covered on either an album or in live concert by over 30 other artists.
The single was Lauper’s breakthrough hit, remaining in the #2 position on the Billboard Hot 100 for two weeks.It remains one of Lauper’s signature songs and is was a widely popular song during the era of its release, the 1980s. The “Rolling Stone & MTV: ‘100 Greatest Pop Songs’: 1-50”, “Rolling Stone: “The 100 Top Music Videos”” and the “VH1: 100 Greatest Videos” lists ranked the song at #22, #39 and #45, respectively.The song received a Grammy Award nomination for Record of the Year and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance.
Mixed for the 12″ single release by Arthur Baker.
Girls Just Want To Have Fun (Extended Version) 6:08
Redskins were a 1980s English band, notable for their left-wing politics and catchy, danceable songs. Their music combined influences from soul, rockabilly, pop and punk rock.
The band formed in York, England in the early 1980s (from the ashes of punk band No Swastikas), with Chris Dean (vocals/guitar), Martin Hewes (bass/backing vocals) and Nick King (drums). Chris Dean wrote for NME magazine under the name X. Moore. Dean and Hewes were members of the Socialist Workers Party. The band members wore skinhead clothing styles, and they helped inspire the redskin movement.
The band released their first single, “Lev Bronstein”, on the CNT record label in 1982. They released one more single, “Lean On Me”, on CNT before signing to London Records. On 10 June 1984, a group of white power skinheads attacked the band members while they were performing on stage at the free Greater London Council-sponsored Jobs for a Change festival at Jubilee Gardens, South Bank. King was replaced in 1985 by Paul Hookham, although for the recording of the band’s first EMI/Decca single “Bring it Down”, Style Council drummer, Steve White was brought in to perform. Shortly afterwards Hookham took over full time drum duties. The band released one full album, Neither Washington Nor Moscow, before splitting up at the end of 1986.
The fourth single released by the band was “(Burn It Up) Bring It Down! (This Insane Thing)”, the track reached No.33 on the UK singles chart and the 12″ single included an extended version of the track which ran 4:32 on the album and a non-LP B-side.
(Burn It Up) Bring It Down! (This Insane Thing) 6:53
The Jamaica Girls released three singles, the first “Rock The Beat” (1982) on Becket Records, followed up by “Need Somebody New” (1983) on Sleeping Bag Records and finally, “On The Move” (1986) on Sire Records. The common thread through all three releases was electro-funk pioneer Bert Reid who had writing and production credits on all three singles.
Bert Reid was a founding member of Crown Heights Affair and wrote/produced classic tracks for Unlimited Touch, Gwen McCrae, Denroy Morgan, Secret Weapon and many others. Bert worked with the legends of the dance music scene including Larry Levan and Francois Kevorkian. Unfortunately Bert passed away from lung cancer in 2004 but his catalogue of classic funk, disco and electro-soul is a testament to the great man’s talent and well worth investigating.
“On The Move” was one of the few Francois Kevorkian 80’s mixes that I was still missing so special mention to Music Avenue in Paris for helping EV out on this one.