All the Free EP's from the 20th Century collected in one place....when I get them, that is.

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Monday, 14 November 2011


The first in a series of posts celebrating the pioneering FreeEP format, the Volume CD magazine - a CD with a 192 page booklet complete with interviews and facts about the artists contained on the CD. A haven for rare tracks, 17 Volumes were issued in total plus a wealth of spin offs. As well as some of the biggest names in indie contributing tracks and remixes to the format, the magazine also celebrated new and upcoming acts, some of which really did come up and others disappeared as we shall see...

We kick of with Volume Three.

1. I Feel Insane (Live) - Daisy Chainsaw

Breaking through at the beginning of 1992 with the Lovesick Pleasure EP, featuring the pop thrash of Love Your Money, Daisy Chainsaw's profile soon waned. Thanks to coverage on The Chart Show the EP hit #26 but follow up singles and album, Eleventeen fared less well. Famed for her manic stage appearances singer Katy Jane Gartside quit the band in 1993 and disappeared for  6 years until she re-emerged with Queen Adreena. I Feel Insane is featured on Daisy Chainsaw's sole album, this live version exclusive to Volume.

2. Innocent X (Remix) - Therapy?

Originally featured on Therapy?'s debut (mini) album. Babyteeth, this remix remained exclusive to this release for three years. In 1995, at the height of the band's commercial success, Volume released an EP of their own compilation highlights  and chose this as the lead track along with a remix of Orbital's Belfast. The EP hit #53 in the charts making it Volume's only chart appearance.

3. Daughters Of Darkness - Depth Charge

DJ Jonathan Saul Kane, under the names Depth Charge and Octagon Man, has released a wealth of 12" singles influencing a generation of electro and trip hop artists along the way. Credited  with pioneering the big beat and trip-hop movements with his dark sample based tracks, Kane released his first 12", the eponymous Depth Charge in 1989. This track was exclusive to this release until inclusion on his 1994 compilation Nine Deadly Venoms.

4. California Uber Alles - The Disposable Heroes Of Hiphoprisy

Before forming Spearhead in 1994, Michael Franti fronted DHoH specialising in socially aware, politically charged rap. The band's one and only album, the classic Hypocrisy Is The Greatest Luxury hit #40 in the UK featuring the single Television Is The Drug Of The Nation which reached #43. The album also featured this cover of the notorious Dead Kennedys track updated to mention then current Governor of California, Pete Wilson.

5. Cloud Shine - Levitation

Exclusive 2 minute track from this progressive psychedelic band fronted by the eccentric Terry Bickers, ex-House Of Love. The band released a number of singles, EPs and a chart album (Need For Not - #45) between 1991 and 1994 and were plagued by touring troubles, kicked off support slots by both Transvision Vamp and The Fall allegedly for their excessive stage demands. Bickers quit in 1993and the band stumbled on with little impact until their demise the following year.

6. Over Rising (Instrumental) - The Charlatans

A huge rarity, this is the only place you can legitimately find this track so it's a must for all Charlatans collectors. In between their debut album, the #1 Some Friendly and the less successful but underrated follow-up Between 10th & 11th, the band released two singles in 1991. The original version of this track, Over Rising, was the first and hit a respectable #15 to good reviews. The second single, Me In Time, is perhaps the Charlatans' least known and least favourite of their three-dozen singles and has never been reissued on any official album or compilation despite it being the first to feature long term guitarist Mark Collins. The track's lowly #28 placing signalled the beginning of an early sales lull for the band - however, they'd steadily turn it round....

7. Jesus Timeshare Experience - Psychotropic Vibration

Another exclusive - and this CD contains the full Psychotropic Vibration discography in one fell swoop, the band releasing this track and nothing else. It was formed by singer/guitarist Neil Parfitt who originally formed The Perfect Disaster and released four albums between 1985 and 1991. Before forming PV, Parfitt worked with both halves of Spacemen 3 and after, formed Oedipussy whose 1995 featured the aforementioned Terry Bickers (see below)

8. Safari (Remix) - The Breeders

We all know about Kim Deal, her sister Kelley and Tanya Donnelly but what of other Breeder Josephine Wiggs? She was also in The Perfect Disaster with Neil Parfitt and it was that band supporting Pixies that brought Jo to Deal's attention. Although Wiggs wasn't a member of The Breeders' late 2000s incarnation, she has played with the band on several occasions. Back to Safari, this was the title track from their 1992 EP which hit #69 in April 1992.

9. Let's Sail Away - Honey Tongue

A short lived band who released one album in 1992, Nude Nudes, which featured this track. Honey Tongue consisted of percussionist Jon Mattock, who has performed with Massive Attack, Spiritualized.....and The Perfect Disater with Josephine Wiggs....who just so happenes to be the other half of Honey Tongue. Anyone sense a theme here?

10. My House (Remix) - Terrorvision

Without a doubt containing no-one from Perfect Disaster within their ranks, Terrorvision still remain Bradford's (and nearby Keighley's) number 1 music export despite, reunion shows every once in a while aside, splitting up as a working band over a decade ago. This is an exclusive remix of the band's debut single from 1992 which preceded their first album, Formaldehyde, in 1993. My House also gave the band their big break when the track was re-released in 1994 hitting #29- complete with their cover version of Men At Work's Down Under. Several Top 30 hits and a certain track about a certain alcoholic drink later, Terrorvision were (kind of) no more. Is it too late to get Tony Wright back on Never Mind The Buzzcocks?

11. Criminal (Remix) - Public Image Ltd

An exclusive remix from a track previously only available on 1991's Point Break soundtrack, this is a genuine collector's item for all Lydon collectors. The early 90s weren't kind to PiL. 1990 saw the release of their Greatest Hits Album only for Lydon and Virgin to come to blows over the tracklisting and the label's alleged decision to stop supply of the record to shops once the initial run had sold out. The album only scraped the Top 20 and the title Greatest Hits...So Far proved to be a misnomer. Only one single, Cruel, and one album, That What Is Not, followed, both missing the Top 40. The band split but Lydon's career carried on regardless via his collaboration with Leftfield, a Sex Pistols reunion, calling the British public "cunts" on live television in the jungle, those butter ads and PiL's eventual reunion in 2009.

12. Sisterfy - Sweet Jesus

B-side to short-lived Rough Trade signings' debut single Honey Loving Honey. Several singles followed until the band morphed into Venus with little success.

13. Belfast/Wasted (Vocal Mix) - Orbital

Eventually released as a single in its own right with Innocent X by Therapy?, this was an exclusive vocal remix of Belfast from Phil and Paul Hartnoll's eponymous debut album with vocals courtesy of regular collaborator Grant Fulton. Orbital scored 2 Top 40 hits in 1992 with the Mutations and Radiccio EPs, the latter featuring the classic Halcyon which would appear in remixed form on their second eponymous album in 1993. A slew of classic albums and epic live performances continued for the next decade until the duo's break-up. The brothers Hartnoll reconvened in 2009 for more live dates and a AA side single featuring Don't Stop Me and The Gun Is Good, the former sampling Buggles' Video Killed The Radio Star. A new album is due in 2012.

14. Go (Subliminal Mix) - Moby

One of batch of remixes to complement the release of Moby's debut UK single, Twin Peaks theme sampling Go. The single initially stalled at #46 in the UK in July 1991 before being reactivated three months later, this time hitting the Top 10. Some commercial success followed over the following five years, Moby scoring 6 UK Top 40 electronic/dance singles. An aggressive punk rock album and his take on the James Bond theme followed (his second Top 10 hit) before his commercial breakthrough in 1999 with the ubiquitous Play album.

15. Find Our Direction (Remix) - Natural Life

Big on the festival circuit in the early 90s, Natural Life, a band that described themselves terrifyingly as a Bohemian rock collective, never broke through into the mainstream despite heavy airplay on radio and TV. Eponymous single, Natural Life got as far as #47 in March 1992 but the also eponymous album failed to make a mark and the band, sorry, collective, went their separate ways. Percussionist Shovell went on to greater success as a member of Mike Pickering's dance collective - M People.

16. Slow Down Speedy - LFO

Warp Records' LFO were one of the pioneers of acid-house, techno and IDM in the late 80s whose own eponymous debut single gatecrashed the Top 20 in 1990. The duo released two albums and a clutch of 12" singles until 1996 when members Gaz Varley and Mark Bell went their separate ways. However, their place in history is assured as one of the most influential techno acts of the last two decades. In 2003, the duo's other half, Mark Bell, resurrected LFO but not before finding time to produce albums for, amongst others, Bjork and Depeche Mode. This track is exclusive to this release.

17. Motorbike (Remix) - Sheep On Drugs

Insane techno from once mildly controversial dance punks. Motorbike became the band's second single in 1992 followed by their debut album, the ironically titled Greatest Hits, which hit #55 in 1993. The album produced two Top 50 singles including From A To H And Back Again which cracked the Top 40. The band's second album ...On Drugs, despite producing another Top 50 single in Let The Good Times Roll tanked and the band knocked it on the head until the inevitable reunion in 2010.

18. Overload (Live) - Interference

A mega rarity for all followers of Tim Simenon - better known as the man behind Bomb The Bass. Interference was - it's that word again - collective founded by Simenon and drummer Keith LeBlanc involving musicians as diverse as Skip McDonald, Bim Sherman and Doug Wimbish to play gigs embracing dance, dub, reggae and jazz. The band played a number of gigs and released on single Global Game in 1994 which featured a remix by Adrian Sherwood. The short-lived project made another appearance in 1998 remixing Simple Minds' classic 1981 hit The American.