Genuinely great LP, just came across a mint copy. Lots of tracks unavailable anywhere else. Does anyone know if G. Williams (Jeb Loy & THe OIl Wells) is Gareth Williams from This Heat? Seems likely? Machine Gun Hogg & Co. are former members of Pop Group/Rip Rig & Panic. The Allan Pellay tracks are amazing (very Jah Wobble) - hard to imagine he later had Hi NRG club hits.
In a comment I made only two days ago (regarding a compilation CD on Tummy Touch Records) I mentioned how there aren't many compilations featured in my list of favourite LPs but this one here is also somewhere at the very top of that list.
As the title says, it is indeed party music that covers just about every base when taking sub-cultures of the time into account. The LP features dub, punk, new wave, experimental and avantgarde and for the time (1981) was very very diverse indeed and did not really fit into any particular musical category. It could have easily been seen as a compilation trying too hard to be weird or arty but despite this never once does it seem to take itself too seriously.
The lightheartedness of the very first track "Woodpecker Sound" ensures this and is a taste of how the LP means to go on. The track itself is version of Chemical Specialist from Creation Rebel & New Age Steppers' LP "Threat to Creation" and the aformentioned musicians provide the backing music once again for Jah Woosh's mischievious warblings.
The Chicken Granny's "Quit The Body" is an insightful conclusion inspired no doubt by large amounts of hallucinogenic drugs, while Alan Pellay's "Parasitic Machine" and "Demonic Forces" are blistering with cynicism if not paranoia of the highest extreme (undoubtedly also produced by copious amounts of you know what).
The London Underground track is an excellent dub adventure with a fantastic rhythym and a post-punk vocal over it. Similarly the Mothmen try their hand at some very dub-influenced experimental punk.
Jeb Loy & The Oil Wells is simply hilarious - a vitriolic attack on the U.S. of A that's equally as relevant to day as it was then, if not more so.
The rest of the tracks are all fantastic too. Prince Far I, New Age Steppers and Suns of Arqa provide more of the dub-side of things, while Machine Gun Hogg and Judy Nylon take a more avantgarde, new wave approach to things. They all deserve a comment each but I just don't have all day. The long-and-short of it though is that this LP, aside from being totally ground-breaking and still facinating today, is that it does not have a single filler track on it. It rocks from start to finish. And given the recent resurgence in New/No Wave and electro this LP should be listened to not merely due to its musical content but as a hint of what was to come in terms of the influence On-U Sound eventually had on reggae, dance and ambient and as a foretaste of the increasing trend in mixing completely different musical genres together in the quest for originality. The LP therefore has an overwhelming feel of having been released 20 years too early. It's definitely one worth hunting down if you know what's good for you.