Coil ‎– Scatology

Force & Form ‎– FFK1, K.422 ‎– FFK1
Vinyl, LP, Album, Anal Staircase Postcard

Tracklist Hide Credits

A1 Ubu Noir
A2 Panic
Guitar, Vocals – JB*Programmed By [Original Rhythm] – PC*Sampler [Additional Sampling], Arranged By – Clint RuinWritten-By [Written With] – J.G. Thirlwell
A3 At The Heart Of It All
Clarinet – Stephen E Thrower*Piano – PC*Sampler [Overdubs Of Emulator] – Clint Ruin, PC*Synthesizer [Yamaha DX7] – JB*Written-By [Written With] – S.E. Thrower*
A4 Tenderness Of Wolves
Acoustic Guitar – Alex FergussonVocals, Written-By [Vocal], Lyrics By, Written-By [Written With] – Gavin Friday
A5 The Spoiler
Vocals – JB*, PC*
A6 Clap
B1 Solar Lodge
Guitar, Bass, Vocals – JB*Percussion [Additional], Clarinet – Stephen E Thrower*Programmed By [Rhythms, Samples] – PC*Written-By [Written With] – S.E. Thrower*
B2 The Sewage Worker's Birthday Party
Bass – JB*
B3 Godhead ⇔ Deathead
B4 Cathedral In Flames

Companies, etc.



Original release of 3000 copies included an "Anal Staircase" postcard pasted over the black sun logo on the front cover. Comes with a black and white printed inner sleeve with lyrics. The artwork in the top left cover of the front of the inner sleeve is a woodcut by Alfred Jarry. Some copies included a poster on either white or yellow paper, and some later copies included a two-sided A4 insert advertising upcoming releases.

A1 - Four sounds, sampled and sequenced on a Fairlight CMI.
A3 - An improvisation at Aosis Studios.
A4 - Backing track composed on the Fairlight.
A5 - Original rhythm played on Mimic sampling keyboard and recorded on TEAC 4 track cassette machine and then bounced to 24 track for the addition of Ocarina, organ, sampled drums and vocals.
B1 - Recorded live at the Bar Maldoror, September 3rd, 1984.
B2 - This track consists of samples made from private recordings and from How To Destroy Angels.
B3 - Originally to be called "Ergot".

"The name 'Coil', first used by John Balance in Autumn 1982 for his solo works, now represents him in collaboration with Peter Christopherson."

"We would like to thank the following, who were all most obliging in one way or another: Marc A., Stevø, Rob, Jane and Sue, Gavin Friday, Steve, Nick Alvarez, Tibet 93, Barry Clempson, God's Gift, Max & Richard, Fritz, Derek J., Marc Monin, Bastille, and Leon, wherever he is."

On spine: Made in England ℗ & © K.422 1984

Barcode and Other Identifiers

  • Matrix / Runout (Side A label): FFK1A
  • Matrix / Runout (Side B label): FFK1B
  • Matrix / Runout (Side A, hand-etched runout): FFK 1 A¹ THE HILLS ARE ALIVE MPO
  • Matrix / Runout (Side B, hand-etched runout): FFK 1 B¹ I AM PERPLEXED MPO

Other Versions (5 of 22) View All

Cat# Artist Title (Format) Label Cat# Country Year
FFKCD1, FFKCD 1 Coil Scatology(CD, Album, RE) Force & Form, Force & Form FFKCD1, FFKCD 1 UK 1995 Sell This Version
ARSN 228019 Coil Scatology(CD, Album, Ltd, RE, Unofficial) ArsNova ARSN 228019 Russia 2000 Sell This Version
FFKCD1, FFKCD 1 Coil Scatology(CD, Album, RE, RP) Force & Form, Force & Form FFKCD1, FFKCD 1 UK Unknown Sell This Version
RC005 Coil Scatology(Cass, Album, RE, Unofficial) Rose Clouds RC005 2017 Sell This Version
FFK1 Coil Scatology(LP, Album) Force & Form, K.422 FFK1 UK 1984 Sell This Version



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August 12, 2019
To start with, "Scatology" is a perfect piece of evidence in where early Psychic TV's true remains are; the genius and the enigma of John Balance and Peter Sleazy Christopherson with all the madness in between is what makes this, their debut album, in many ways a disturbingly fascinating listen. If you listen closely, "Force Thee Hand Ov Chance" and especially "Dreams Less Sweet" are more "Coil", the way the soothing and the more menacing bits of music are juxtaposed do suggest, Sleazy was the main musical director on those two albums... In that, "Scatology" is an interesting "crossover" record, ideally fitting back in with the 1983/84-era Psychic TV just the same. And while Psychic TV continued along the way with varying degrees of experimentation in years that followed, Coil stayed strict and loyal to their own philosophy and how it evolved to great effect start to finish ("finish" meaning the duo's sad and abrupt ending, first with John Balance's tragic passing and then Sleazy's).

It can also be viewed as a collection of works in progress (several pieces do sound like well crafted unfinished studio recordings ("At The Heart Of It All" as an example, also appeared at the time in Derek Jarman's "Angelic Conversation", for which Coil delivered a stellar soundtrack) - a "compilation" that kickstarted one of the most consistently excellent discographies in the history of avant-garde music. The very title immediately causes a stir, Coil were living their own dark dream and never side-stepped for a bit, mentally and physically devoted to the sheer vision of life's beauties in the grotesque and, to an average mind, in the repulsive. Of many dark-sounding groups that graced the underground scene in that golden age of post-punk, Coil provided with a true template, staying unpretentious to the core. "Scatology" is their rawest self, openly attacking the senses, accentuated in their anti-religious statements; to name a few - "Cathedral In Flames", "Panic" and especially in "Godhead ⇔ Deathead"; try singing "Virgin Mary weak and wild rids herself of an unwanted child" without imagining your very tongue falling out of the mouth, bleeding. Such a powerful statement, equaling PiL's amazingly nihilistic "Religion", a brutal disclosure of corporate religion and social hypocrisy.

The element of horror is further evident in pieces like "The Tenderness Of Wolves" (featuring creepy guest vocals from Gavin Friday, the piece very much fitting in with Virgin Prunes' own experiments at the time) and "Ubu Noir", a frenetic opener using sampled bits from Alfred Jarry. Equally violent and merciless are "The Spoiler" and "Solar Lodge" while the album's ideal centre-piece - "The Sewage Worker's Birthday Party", according to the album's liner notes, inspired by a homoerotic story from the magazine "Mr. S/M", doesn't feature a vocal narration but the raw sounding drone and soaking sounds provides with an effectively disturbing storyline.

If Pasolini ever survived into the 80s, he would have certainly worked with them - because once you hold your breath and try and see his ultimate brutal masterpiece "Salò" in one take, you will understand where the inspiration comes from - and "Scatology" is both, about human suffering as well as trying to find a way out, liberating the mind that is systematically hurt by political and religious extremes, imposed fear through the presence of an invisible authority.