Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Album Review...Various - Another Splash of Colour, New Psychedelia in Britain 1980 -1985

Cherry Red Records have released 'Another Splash of Colour' an expansion of the original EMI  release from 1982. This 3 CD set captures the Nu Psych Scene, largely centred around London club nights, like 'The Groovy Cellar' over its 64 tracks.
The first disc is largely made up of the original '82 compilation and there's some great tracks. 'Dancing in my Mind' by The High Tide is a groovy pop song that has the elements of psych from days gone by, but a sound that's definetly identifiable as an Indie pop track from the early eighties.
The same can be said for Miles Over Matters 'Something's Happening Here' and Kimberley Rew's 'Stomping all over the world'. Whilst the further 2 discs have plenty of recognisable psychedelic pop contained within; there are also some interesting tracks from Mod revival bands (The Onlookers, The Vandells, The Jetset), of which eventually evolved their sounds into something far more psychedelic.  Amazingly, many of the songs have heavy nods to The Jam (the unreleased track 'The Haze by The Dream Factory and 'Pass Myself'  by The Third Eye).
Elsewhere, we have great songs by more well known and established artists, Julian Cope ('Sunspots') and the excellent Nirvana' by The Icicle Works, as well as a previously unissued demo by Doctor and the Medics (Barbara Can't Dance).
Other unreleased tracks of note include gems from Direct Hits, Future Daze and the Magic Mushroom Band; as well as the fantastic 'only the Stones Remain' by The Soft Boys.

The Eighties seem to be an easy target, probably because of the flamboyance that came with the rise of the New Romantics, which seem to have stuck in the minds of general public.  It wasn't helped that the same fashion crimes were being repeated towards the end of the decade by the L.A . Hair Metal bands.  What we were left with in between, (in some opinions) the only decent band around in the Eighties was The Smiths, this compilation certainly goes some way to disproving that idea!

There's a broader appeal for this release; you can pinpoint the distinct sets of influences over the 3 discs to the indie rock sounds that were to follow in the years to come; in particular the dawn of Creation Records (The Revolving Paint Dream, The Jasmine Minks, Biff Bang Pow!), Shoegaze and the rise in popularity of psychedelic music in more recent times. ASOC does an exceptional job of introducing another perspective to the history of Psych and serves as a reminder for those that knew about the underground scene, that rarely gets spoken of, with the same sense of nostalgia that the original days of psychedelia does. It's a history lesson anyone keen to expand their mind musically should take seriously, especially in the wonderful deluxe clamshell packaging, which features a hefty booklet, with a 9000 word sleeve note by ex NME journalist Neil Taylor.  Essential stuff.

Buy Another Splash of Colour x3 cd from Cherry Red Records HERE

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