03
Apr

PHONO SELECT FRESH STOCK WEEKENDER!

Your favorite Sacramento record store will have two extended weekend opening for April-June, that’s how much we miss you and that’s how many rad records we have to put out into the bins!

Make sure you go to our website and sign up for the newsletter to get the list of what’s being put out that weekend.

http://www.phonoselect.com/

Regular hours during week are now Tues-Friday
12noon to 5:30-6PM

Here are the extended weekend dates coming up!

April Dates:

Friday 4th Noon-8pm and Saturday 5th 10am-2pm

Friday 25th Noon-8pm and Saturday 26th 10am-2pm

May Dates:

Friday 9th Noon-8pm and Saturday 10th 10am-2pm

Friday 23rd Noon-8pm and Saturday 24th 10am-2pm

June Dates:

Friday 6th Noon-8pm and Saturday 7th 10am-2pm

Friday 20th Noon-8pm and Saturday 21st 10am-2pm.

26
Mar
24
Mar
24
Mar

First album from LA New Wave superstars Berlin with vocalist Virginia Macolino.

The material on “Information” is similar in sound to the period of their popularity; acoustic drums, guitars and synths together, but is vastly different in tone. The material is far more “New Wave” in orientation; at times resembling DEVO more than the band who would record “Sex [I’m A…].” Chris Velasco, who would later leave the band, contributes strong guitar work and the biggest difference between this album and the subsequent “Pleasure Victim” EP was that John Crawford, only wrote a small part of this material instead of dominating the writing as he did going forward.

A large pleasure of this album is that the lyrics are more socially than sexually concerned. The classic New Wave tropes of future shock, new technology, and rejection of mainstream values abound on this album for the first and last time for Berlin. The band was composed of Jo Julian on synths [who also produced], Dan Van Patten on drums, Chris Velasco on guitar, the familiar John Crawford on bass, and Virginia Macolino on vocals.

The album was released in 1980, but fairly reeks of 1979 New Wave! Macolino’s vocals are full of defiant attitude for the most part. Her singing on the opener “Mind Control” recalls the New Wave swoop of Lene Lovich that you can hear as the foundation that über-bimbo Dale Bozzio probably drew upon when Missing Persons got their mojo working the following year. Macolino’s punkette vocals are also abetted and matched with various forms of vocal effects and vocoding for that all important technological New Wave emphasis that was in the air like pollen at the time. The variety of vocal effects employed here is far beyond what was usually the norm for this time.

“Overload,” which is familiar to those with the Renegade Records pressing of “A Matter Of Time” is a great number with a stuttering drum pattern courtesy of Van Patten. For the most part, rhythm is via a traditional kit, well played and recorded. A smattering of synthetic percussion appears, but this album was largely made with beefy, rock drumming that gives it a heft that would be missing from synthpop groups a year or two down the road.

The following number, “City Nights” has great staccato guitar from Velasco that meshes most excellently with Julian’s synth work. This track, more than any other, hits the Ultravox mark that Crawford and the band [all Ultravox fans; Foxx era] were clearly aiming for. It manages to echo the values of “Systems Of Romance” and Conny Plank’s production thereof where guitars and synths doubled for each other for a unified, synthetic hybrid that was neither fish nor fowl, but more powerful than both. That it takes its cues from that approach while not cloning Ultravox’s sound, per se, is a huge plus. Perhaps it’s not surprising that after this album was recorded, keyboardist/producer Jo Julian found himself engineering for John Foxx.

Side two has the debut single, “A Matter Of Time,” recut with Macolino singing lead. It doesn’t stray far from the Teri Nunn original vocal. It’s still a great song from the pen of John Crawford. The underlying synth riffs evoke cinematic James Bond soundtrack music rather successfully. It’s followed by “Middle Class Suicide,” a less-than-subtle attack on the Hollywood mainstream; called “Zone-H” here. I’m assuming that’s SoCal slang in any case. The tracks leaps into DEVO-space [or is that Zappa space?] with its herky-jerky consistently shifting time signatures in part of the chorus.

The concluding “Uncle Sam” really does the DEVO thing rather well to the point that it recalls “Race Of Doom” in its synthetic percussion, which was not released for a year afterward. Hmmm… I wonder? The lyrics seem politically charged but on closer inspection resist interpretation. The album is well played and produced and if it seems like it was cut by a completely different band than the group that released “Pleasure Victim” two years later, that’s because it really was. This is a vastly different group to the one called Berlin afterward. And therein lies its charm.

from

Post-Punk Monk blog

22
Mar
22
Mar
22
Mar
Hey Kids, sell or donate your records, tapes, cds, posters, magazines or anything pop culture/rock n roll/skateboarding related stuff to my goodie buddy over at PHONO SELECT RECORDS! He’s a heck of a guy!
916.849.3647
Dal@phonoselect.com

Hey Kids, sell or donate your records, tapes, cds, posters, magazines or anything pop culture/rock n roll/skateboarding related stuff to my goodie buddy over at PHONO SELECT RECORDS! He’s a heck of a guy!

916.849.3647

Dal@phonoselect.com

14
Mar
13
Mar
13
Mar

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