Arlene Phillips' Hot Gossip* ‎– Geisha Boys And Temple Girls

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Tracklist

Soul Warfare
Houses In Motion
I Don't Depend On You
Burn For You
Geisha Boys And Temple Girls
Morale
Word Before Last
Circus Of Death

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Crijevo

Crijevo

October 17, 2012
edited over 3 years ago
referencing Geisha Boys And Temple Girls, LP, Album, DID 13, DID13
While Martyn Ware and Ian Marsh deserve lots of respect for their post-punk contributions to the history of modern (electro) pop, their ambitions in the post-League MK I production duties show also worrying sings, of which this, Hot Gossip's lonesome LP attempt is one of the worst in their catalogue. To squeeze absolutely everyone into this kind of musical (synthetic) frame can sometimes be so misleading and appalingly boring. Personally, as an admirer of their early BEF/Heaven 17 work, I remember being particularly intrigued by this album (as well as "Music of Quality & Distinction" V/A LP), only to face the absolute bottom line of one such effort(less) feature. Ware and Marsh team up with the Arlene Phillips' dance troupe, hoping to re-gain, at least some of the mass public's interest in earlier HL material, helped along with the synth-pop hype - at the time fired up with Human League MK II massive success of "Dare!".

However, while the idea behind such a concept is not at all bad, and could have delivered a far more intriguing set of early HL updates, "Geisha Boys & Temple Girls", from the performance perspective of a TV dance troupe of 1981 is a downright miss with very little (if anything) to offer. The vocals, whether male or female, are so flat, shallow and boringly generic - but it's not the only problem; Ware and Marsh here sound so stuck up their own arses, trying to prove how "real" their music can actually sound (not) when over-exploited and overblown, either synthetically or with real instruments added.

Musically, this album couldn't have sounded more dated - and comparing Hot Gossip's versions of "Circus Of Death", "The Word Before Last" - even "I Don't Depend On You" - to the timeless (and of course, superior) originals, brings the impression of nothing short of a total self-parody. "Soul Warfare" and "Geisha Boys" themselves, needless to say, feature some of the original sounds borrowed straight off Heaven 17's "Penthouse & Pavement" album ("Soul Warfare" is actually a straight-forward karaoke version). But to show how horrible it can actually get, try and listen to the troupe's attempt at rendering Talking Heads' "Houses In Motion" - and you'll get just another reason worth nailing down this LP coffin deep into the ground and forget it ever existed for the inanity of it all.
Betabox

Betabox

June 27, 2012
referencing Geisha Boys And Temple Girls, LP, Album, 204 182-320, 204 182

This cover album has a great version of the Human League's "Circus Of Death" on here. The rest is just mediocre television grade pop.
So pick it up for a quid or 2 but not more.