The Black Dog ‎– Spanners

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Tracklist

Raxmus 3:03
Bolt 1 0:27
Barbola Work 6:42
Bolt 2 0:27
Psil-cosyin 10:32
Chase The Manhattan 5:42
Bolt 3 1:36
Tahr 3:08
Bolt 4 1:06
Further Harm 6:18
Nommo 6:53
Bolt 5 0:22
Pot Noddle 7:13
Bolt 6 0:42
End Of Time 3:44
Utopian Dream 6:00
Bolt 7 0:17
Frisbee Skip 5:25
Chesh 6:03

Versions (14)

Cat# Artist Title (Format) Label Cat# Country Year
PUP LP1 The Black Dog Spanners(2xLP, Album) Warp Records PUP LP1 UK 1995 Sell This Version
PUP LP 1 The Black Dog Spanners(Cass, Album) Warp Records PUP LP 1 UK 1994 Sell This Version
PUP LP1 The Black Dog Spanners(2xLP, Album) Warp Records PUP LP1 UK 1995 Sell This Version
PUP 1 LP The Black Dog Spanners(2xLP, Album, W/Lbl) Warp Records PUP 1 LP UK 1995 Sell This Version
PUP CD1 The Black Dog Spanners(CD, Album) Warp Records PUP CD1 Australia 1995 Sell This Version
RTD 126.1737.2 The Black Dog Spanners(CD, Album) Rough Trade, Warp Records RTD 126.1737.2 Germany 1995 Sell This Version
PUP CD1 The Black Dog Spanners(CD, Album) Warp Records PUP CD1 UK 1995 Sell This Version
61806-2 The Black Dog Spanners(CD, Album) EastWest Records America, Warp Records 61806-2 US 1995 Sell This Version
678.1001.20, PUP CD1 The Black Dog Spanners(CD, Album) Play It Again Sam [PIAS], Warp Records 678.1001.20, PUP CD1 Belgium 1995 Sell This Version
61806-2, PRO-61806-2 The Black Dog Spanners(CD, Album, Promo) EastWest Records America, Warp Records, EastWest Records America 61806-2, PRO-61806-2 US 1995 Sell This Version
PUP MC1 The Black Dog Spanners(Cass, Album) Warp Records PUP MC1 UK 1995 Sell This Version
SRCS 7619 ザ・ブラック・ドッグ* スパナーズ - Spanners(CD, Album) Warp Records, Sony Records SRCS 7619 Japan 1995 Sell This Version
PUPCDD 1 The Black Dog Spanners(19xFile, FLAC, Album) Warp Records PUPCDD 1 UK Unknown
PUPCDD1 The Black Dog Spanners(19xFile, MP3, Album, 320) Warp Records PUPCDD1 Unknown

Recommendations

Reviews Show All 16 Reviews

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AskeladdenBlack

AskeladdenBlack

August 12, 2017
referencing Spanners, 2xLP, Album, PUP LP1
For me you can't compare Bytes to Spanners or visa versa. Both albums are completely different with different objectives, both stand equally but in vastly different places.
woofhard_one

woofhard_one

April 16, 2016
referencing Spanners, 2xLP, Album, PUP LP1
My friend found a copy of this in a skip in Brighton, and kindly gave it to me. It was in NM condition and contained a press release... Amazing album that I still treasure to this day, the music within defies definition really. Timeless.
chrissy.winter

chrissy.winter

March 11, 2016
referencing Spanners, 2xLP, Album, PUP LP1

i remember seeing the 9/10 review from NME and went out that day and bought it. if you listen to this the only thing letting on its from circa 94 is the inside cover. Superb track after track, its money well spent...a must have CD for the car.
Essential vinyl for your collection.... Another great WARP release
radiophonic72

radiophonic72

April 8, 2015
referencing Spanners, 2xLP, Album, PUP LP1
Awesome album and even though the computer graphics involved on most of the early Black Dog cover artwork is of it's day the music held within is timeless and I for one find it just as refreshing to listen to 20yrs after it was made! 10 out of 10!!
MrZyc

MrZyc

September 24, 2014
referencing Spanners, 2xLP, Album, PUP LP1

much appreciated.
ruethewhirl

ruethewhirl

May 22, 2012
edited over 5 years ago
referencing Spanners, CD, Album, PUP CD1
There are two things that need to be put down in the table before talking about this record: first, it is a tough one to get into, highly moody and with an overall dense atmosphere. Think twice before spinning it, as you might be in the wrong mood and it won't sound any good.
Second, and i find this very important, i can't avoid a comparison with Bytes, the '93 compilation which, from my personal view, while clearly adapting the detroit techno soul, still covered a wider range of emotions and tastes, sounding like an exploration of the same eclectic field that Spanners would later define as a theme.
It's intersting that one can still spot which tracks were made by whom, as it is known that the trio used to work separately (and Plaid still work this way nowadays). Chesh, for example, has Balil written all over it. Barbola Work does sound like it has a lot from Ken. Despite the method their intention was clearly to melt everything down to the same pot. The cover expresses this perfectly: a dog with one body and three heads. A better cover could not be imagined.

Mystery has always been a word i am afraid of using, because it implies a certain thing i am talking about as if it were objective, but that i can't really explain. Spanners is for me like another egyptian myth, a civilization that fascinates me more for what i don't know about it than for what i know, in the sense that it doesn't need to tell you anything beyond the strictly minimum. It doesn't need to explain itself and tell its story. Spanners has born to become a myth in its own way.
I can only imagine how this might have sounded back in the day it was released because, it has nothing to do with what was being done at the time, it's like it was produced inside a bubble, right when [detroit] techno was king. As of today, i think it still sounds way ahead of our time.
Just like myths do.

The acid lines, the only element that might sound instantly familiar in this music, is taken to extreme proportions: it is raw and almost filthy on Psil-Cosyin, but it can also be indistinguishable and blend perfectly like an instrument on Further Harm, it is hypnotic in Nommo, gets elevated to epic statute in Utopian Dream and sounds so happy in Frisbee Skip. I love it how the guys at the Black Dog Towers grabbed an element so related to the techno identity, and made it sound so personal and, most of all, eclectic. Barbola Work explores rhythms that are exotic in a dark, but also sexually engaging way. Utopian Dream is like the architecture of the temple of Hatshepsut, minimal in elements, grandiose and majestic in the way it is presented to the world. And Chesh finishes the record still feeding the mystery a bit more. It's a sonic organism. Notice how each melody keeps germinating from another one, and how they develop around axes, building a crescendo, sort of like droplets that are born from another bigger droplet and spin around it. It's one of the most emotional tracks i have ever heard. Last but not least, i couldn't forget about the little Bolt pieces, that act as antechambers of the record, as if the other tracks were rooms one would explore inside a pyramid, and they are for me, the most exquisite, alien and mysterious sounds of the whole record, and can't really compare to the long tracks. It's strange that they are called bolts tough, but it is indeed obvious that they are essential to the record as a whole.

My dream is that in 20 years i can still be listening to it and have the exact same opninion, because Spanners was already born timeless and it is like a wild spirit that won't allow itself to be understood objectively, only in a transcendent way.
raxmus2

raxmus2

September 11, 2010
referencing Spanners, CD, Album, PUP CD1
Best electronic album of the 1990s. I can't think of anything that has topped it since, and I've got 11000 mp3s. It's a masterpiece. Nothing is as carefully crafted as this album.
Psyloid

Psyloid

February 14, 2005
edited over 12 years ago
referencing Spanners, CD, Album, PUP CD1

The bolt parts that glue the tracks together are amongst the weirdest sounds i've heard. I found this CD in a shop halfway the nineties and i didn't know what to expect. It was my first meeting with the black dog, and i thought it was made by aliens from a far, nasty planet...
Even today (2005) it remains one of the greatest masterpieces ever in electronic music.
baj

baj

November 11, 2004
edited over 13 years ago
referencing Spanners, 2xLP, Album, PUP LP1

Of late I've been listening to this again, more intensely than I have in a while. Parallel and Bytes are fantastic, but they are compilations- this is a stand-alone record, and as such, this is not only their best, but one of Warp's as well.

There was and will never be another Black Dog. Their music remains perfect, other-worldly, yet completely natural and complementing simple and genuine emotional experiences in ways less powerful and sophistacted forms of techno cannot. The images Spanners evokes are strong and memorable: Chesh makes me think of fast-moving clouds after a storm...Raxmus a hazy stoned sunrise from the past...the End of Time with the most intense experience of my life...Most are these tracks are danceable, too (try not moving to Psil-Cosyin). When I hear this stuff, I see how far behind the times we are these days.
sklbns27

sklbns27

October 27, 2004
edited over 13 years ago
referencing Spanners, CD, Album, PUP CD1

You can't really call this an IDM record as it was out before people would call music that silly name. It's best ambient/chillout album ever. The mix is so soft and tame while the drums don't over drive the main groove. The sounds alone will take you on this journey that will make girls, guys, dogs, cats, moms, dads, brothers and sisters love this album for the years to come.