Dec 11, 2013

RhoDeo 1349 Aetix

Hello,  Mandela bringing global leaders together for the last time, Obama came with a better speech then his previous response, and shook hands with a Castro, meanwhile the US Congress decided to spend more on the military..ah yes all that pork spending needs to go on and on and on. Personally i was saddened to hear one of my favorite writers, Colin Wilson, had died-notably on the same day as Mandela. His death didn't get much attention from the British press, which btw is a terribly incestuous bunch, time will prove he has been one of Britains greatest thinkers and writers. Should you come across one of his many books in a secondhand bookshop-pick it up! You won't regret it.


Time for another Aetix episode and here a band that took part of their inspiration for their rough and sometimes chaotic music from punk pioneers like The Stooges. The sound of the group was often coarse and featured heavy elements of feedback and distortion. Their experiments in mixing synthesized noise with rock instrumentation have been cited as a forerunner of industrial rock music. . ....N'Joy

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One of the original forefathers in the industrial boom of the 1980s, Chrome's amalgam of distorted guitars and vocals, samples from TV, and a raw punk aesthetic (inspired by the Stooges) became much more popular in the early '90s than it ever was while the band was around in the '70s and '80s. Although active for only six years, Chrome left behind a huge discography, including nine full LPs (several of which were released posthumously) and numerous EPs and singles.

Chrome was formed in 1975 by Damon Edge (real name Thomas Wisse: drums, vocals, synths, production) and Gary Spain (bass guitar, violin) in San Francisco. They recorded and released their first album, The Visitation, along with John Lambdin (guitar) and Mike Low (guitar, vocals). After recording The Visitation, Edge sent the album to Warner Brothers to see if they wanted to release the album. A Warner Brothers A&R representative told Edge that the album sounded like a "messed up Doors album"; to Damon Edge, this was a compliment. The label did not release the album, so Edge set up his own label, Siren Records. Edge was 19 years old when The Visitation was released. After the recording of the first album, singer Mike Low left the band, to be replaced by new guitarist Helios Creed

Chrome's commercial and artistic breakthrough came in 1978 with their second album, Alien Soundtracks. The album began as Ultra Soundtrack, a soundtrack for a radical San Francisco strip show, but was rejected for being too radical. During recording, Chrome largely abandoned conventional rock compositions, instead employing cut-up and collage techniques and heavily processed sound to create a kind of sci-fi punk style. The album was given four stars out of five in the UK music paper Sounds, and Chrome began gradually to gain a cult reputation in the UK and in Europe. After recording Alien Soundtracks, John Lambdin left the band. Their third studio album, Half Machine Lip Moves, was released in 1979. Half Machine Lip Moves continued in the vein of the previous album, but heavier, with Creed's feedback guitar more to the fore. Edge's rough and ready drumming on this album included hitting pieces of scrap metal. Half Machine Lip Moves and their 1979 EP Read Only Memory cemented the band's growing reputation in the UK.  In 1980 Damon Edge married Fabienne Shine. She went on to collaborate with Edge on several Chrome albums; her vocals appear on the Chrome album 3rd from the Sun.

Chrome jumped to the major label Beggars Banquet/WEA in 1980 for third full-length Red Exposure, and the uncompromising sound was compromised slightly. The album wasn't a success, though, and the duo found itself on the Dossier label for 1981's Blood on the Moon. Creed and Edge added a rhythm section (Hilary and John Stench) for the album, and it proved to be their best effort. Though 1982 was the year of Chrome's breakup, it saw the release of 3rd from the Sun along with the compilation LP No Humans Allowed, which included the EPs Inworlds and Read Only Memory. Also in 1982, Chrome Box appeared, comprised of Alien Soundtracks, Half Machine Lip Moves, Blood on the Moon, and No Humans Allowed, plus the previously unavailable Chronicles, Vols. 1-2 LPs.

In 1983 Edge moved to Paris. Shine introduced him to her band and a new lineup of Chrome was formed. Edge and his wife would later separate. Damon Edge continued to release albums with various (mainly Europe-based) musicians under the Chrome moniker over the next decade. They both returned to America in 1988 living in the Hollywood Hills. He liked animals and kept both dogs and cats throughout his life, being sensitive to their needs. He split with his wife in 1990.  In August 1995 Damon Edge was found dead in his Redondo Beach apartment in California; the cause of death was heart failure. Edge had been in contact with Creed and talked about reforming Chrome; sadly, this never happened.

Helios Creed began a successful solo career in 1985. A Helios Creed-led version of Chrome that featured previous members John and Hilary Stench released a series of albums and toured between 1997 and 2001. In recent years Creed has reactivated the Chrome name.

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With Creed recruited to replace original member Mike Low (though allegedly Edge initially turned Creed down after the latter appeared wearing a pirate outfit or something similar), Chrome started kicking into high gear at last. While Spain and Lambdin weren't out of the picture yet, cowriting half the songs with Edge, Creed's mind-melting guitar swiftly took prominence, turning a wiggy band into a total headtrip. Rather than just aiming at acid-rock styling, Creed stuffed his fretbending into an evil, compressed aggro-sound, at once psychedelic and totally in-your-face. Edge equals the activity by stepping into the vocal role himself. Many numbers are constructed out of short fragments which adds to the weird overlay. Even the quieter numbers like "All Data Lost" play around with echo and drone to create disturbing results. The songs themselves allegedly were recorded as the soundtrack to a live sex show, which probably goes a long way towards explaining the sex and sci-fi combination of much of the lyrics.

With Lambdin out and Spain barely there at all, everything rapidly became an Edge/Creed show in the realm of Chrome by the time of Half Machine Lip Moves. The basic tropes having been established -- aggressive but cryptic performance and production, jump cuts between and in songs, judicious use of sampling and production craziness, and an overall air of looming science fiction apocalypse and doom -- all Edge and Creed had to do was perfect it. Starting with the fragmented assault of "TV as Eyes," which rapidly descends into heavily treated, conversational snippets from TV and deep, droning keyboards, Half Machine sounds like a weird broadcast from thousands of miles away where rock is treated as an exotic musical form. Creed fully gets to shine here, his pitched-up/pitched-down guitars as good an example of psychedelic assault as anything. Sprawled all over the beeps and murmurs of the songs, not to mention Edge's still self-created drumming and Iggy-ish vocal interjections, the guitars make everything sound utterly disturbed.



Chrome - Alien Soundtracks and Half Machine Lip Moves  (flac 493mb)

Alien Soundtracks (1978)
01 Chromosome Damage 3:49
02 Monitors 2:19
03 Pygmies In Zee Park 5:59
04 Slip It To The Android 3:47
05 Pharaoh Chromium 3:25
06 Magnetic Dwarf Reptile 3:38
Half Machine Lip Moves (1979)
07 TV As Eyes 2:16
08 Zombie Warfare 5:48
09 March Of The Chrome Police (A Cold Clamey Bombing) 3:37
10 You've Been Duplicated 2:38
11 Mondo Anthem 3:31
12 Half Machine Lip Moves 5:17
13 Abstract Nympho 3:35
14 Turned Around 1:58
15 Zero Time 3:03
16 Creature Eternal 1:53
Subterranean Modern (1979)
17 Anti-Fade 3:55
18 I Left My Heart In San Francisco 0:27
19 Meet You In The Subway 5:14
Read Only Memory (1979)
20 Excerpt From Read Only Memory 8:18
New Age 7" (1980)
21 Informations 3:09

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Continuing deeper into their self-created world of weird alien skies and man/machine biology, among many other things, Edge and Creed, still working with John Cyborg, whipped up Red Exposure. Released as it was in the U.K. by Beggars Banquet during the heyday of Gary Numan, Red Exposure probably came across as the whacked-out American version of the modern machine music Numan (or more appropriately, Cabaret Voltaire) was whipping up. Seen in the light of history, though, it just sounds like Chrome -- a slightly more controlled Chrome than on previous albums, but still out-and-out crazed and strange. Elements of fractured beauty surface more than once -- the instrumental "Room 101," with haunting keyboard sighs and drones, and the similarly moody pulse of "Nights of the Earth" show that not everything is completely cracked. Such moments are only brief compared to the usual hip-shake mind-f*ck of Chrome, pitched somewhere between unexpected catchiness and head-shaking, "what the hell was that?" shifts and turns. Musically there's less clutter, no immediate sense of piling absolutely everything up to see what would happen, even on the busiest tracks. Still, everything feels distanced and not-quite-there as before -- even the crispest, punchiest songs, like the slow-dance beat of "Static Gravity," have something frayed at the edges (in this song's case, distorted and muddied orchestral swoops). Edge and Creed split the vocals between most tracks, while playing a boggling array of keyboards, guitars, and whatever else they could get their hands on. Creed's singing is a little more comprehensible than Edge's, who buries himself in the murk as much as possible or ominously whispers when the mood takes him, as on the more-cryptic-than-thou trudge of "Jonestown." Samples and drop-ins again make an appearance, but usually heavily treated, acting more as background atmospherics than jarring cut-ups. The most amusing cut in context is "Electric Chair," which sounds like somebody told Chrome to see if a Devo-like hit could be created.

Another example of Damon Edge trying to capture that full Chrome spirit on his own -- and not really succeeding. To be fair, Edge uses more of the true Chrome trappings on this album -- squirrelly guitar noise, weird tones here and there, and so forth. But honestly looked at, this is just Edge making vaguely spooky modern rock for his own amusement that, compared to Chrome's downright creepy explosions and moods, is mostly vague mid-'80s alternative fodder. Admittedly, part of the problem is one of Edge's and the post-Creed Chrome's commonest -- everything sounds pretty much the same. Flanged guitar in the background, bass and rhythm keeping the beat but not doing a heck of a lot with it beyond that, low-pitched vocals about either love, weirdness, or both -- the formula rapidly runs dry on The Wind Is Talking.



Chrome and Damon Edge - Red Exposure + The Wind Is Talking (80-85) (flac 420mb)

Chrome - Red Exposure
01 New Age 3:11
02 Room 101 2:06
03 Eyes On Mars 3:32
04 Jonestown 2:22
05 Animal 2:50
06 Static Gravity 3:22
07 Eyes In The Center 4:08
08 Electric Chair 4:08
09 Nights Of The Earth 4:13
10 Isolation 4:34
Damon Edge - The Wind Is Talking
11 I Don't Know Why 4:14
12 Motor At My Head 4:34
13 I'm Exploring You - Shake 4:52
14 Don't Ask Me 3:42
15 Circles Of Time 5:51
16 Prelude - The Wind Is Talking 8:44
17 The Wind Is Talking II 4:02

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Given how good the Edge/Creed/Stench lineup was, the fact that they never properly toured outside two dates -- one in San Francisco and the other, bizarrely, in Italy -- is all the more regrettable. Continuing the blend of straight-up rock crunch and crumbling weirdness that made the Chrome name, 3rd is both just accessible and just gone enough. Opening track "Firebomb" sets the stage well -- Edge sings in deep basso profundo mode, the Stench brothers keep the beat going, and Creed unleashes more incredible, strong soloing to go with his crisp rhythm work. It's another shoulda-been new wave classic that would still seem out of place among its fellows. From there it's another trip into the "not quite right" -- "Armageddon" is especially strong, an eight-minute slow burn toward doom with overly appropriate downbeat rhythms. Creed once again shines with his heavily treated fretwork; when toward the end he tracks two separate solos playing off each other, things really go to town. Another spooky highlight of his work is "Off the Line," where more upfront death dirges are alternated with buried, creepy effects in the background. Creed gets in some vocal fun as well -- at least, assuming it is him given the constant production treatments -- on "Heart Beat," his distorted words sneaking around the crisp beat and wheezing keyboards as well as the usual addition of feedback crunch. The title track was suitably freaked out and heavy enough for Prong to cover it years later on their Beg to Differ album. Though Hendrix's "Third Stone from the Sun" may seem an obvious source of inspiration, the distorted vocals and steady beats come much more from Chrome's collective brain.



Chrome and Damon Edge - 3rd From The Sun and Grand Visions ( flac 435mb)

Chrome - 3rd From The Sun
01 Fire Bomb 3:45
02 Future Ghosts 5:18
03 Armageddon 8:35
04 Heart Beat 5:12
05 Off The Line 4:29
06 3rd From The Sun 4:42
07 Shadows Of A Thousand Years 3:28
Damon Edge - Grand Vision
08 That's OK For Me 6:07
09 In The Light Fields 3:58
10 Anna 7:07
11 No Reason To Leave From The Sun 5:54
12 The Android Stroll 5:32
13 There's No Difference For You Or Me 1:24
14 A Grand Vision 4:43

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11 comments:

Anonymous said...

Seems this link provides a download of another link I think. However it's in the form of an .exe file file and my Mac won't open it. The Red Exposure link just sends me to Google for some reason. Any suggestion?

Thanks, Charles

Rho said...

Hello Charles I don't know what you are on about here, everything works fine here and i never post exe files. You should be able to copy the link from the page and enter it into your browser. Anyway as far as i can see others had no problems downloading. Best of luck

Anonymous said...

Ok, thanks. I'll give it another shot.

Charles

zoon said...

Great job. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Hello mate,
Any chance you can re-up Red Exposure / The Wind is Talking?
Thanks a lot

Rho said...

Try Again Anon..N'Joy

octopussy said...

THANKS!!!! <3 I've been looking fot alien soundtracks in FLAC for ages!
I fucking love you <3

octopussy said...

It's not complete. I don't love you anymore...

octopussy said...

Well, I just come back for the other links, I'm in love again <3

Anonymous said...

A reup of Chrome would be highly appreciated. Thank you so much for your work.

Anonymous said...

Thank you very much for reupping.