In the years before Lego existed, Meccano was very popular amongst parents, as they believed that Meccano was not just a toy, but an educative tool for schoolboys with technical abilities. An average box consisted of iron strips, wheels and plates with holes in it, based upon half an inch distance in between. It was designed “for the engineer of tomorrow” and patented in 1901 by Frank Hornby, who advertised it in the swollen tone that colored the first decades of the century and promised membership of “the Meccano Guild” and “unlimited possibilities as the system itself”. .. ......N'Joy
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The story of Mecano starts with a painting, made in 1977 by founder Dirk Polak after finding an old booklet belonging to a Meccano construction box, as fabricated and sold in the thirties.While scanning the booklet, Dirk was struck by a vision of a world built out of Meccano, in painting, sculpture and even lyrics and music.
The examples in the instruction booklet set Dirk to paint his Meccano figures, surrounded by surrealistic landscapes and interiors. In those days punk was booming and Dirk thought it was time to start a band and together with Pieter Kooyman and a few hired guns he recorded Face Cover Face, b/w Fools as Mecano Ltd. for the “No Fun” label. But Dirk wanted a real band and so he asked Paradiso bouncer Ton Lebbink to be the drummer. Ton, immediately introduced the brothers Tejo and Cor Bolten, who also worked at Paradiso, Tejo as floor-manager and Cor, the band was formed in the blink of an eye. Another advantage of Ton and the Bolten brothers, beside their musical abilities, was that they had unlimited acces to Paradiso, the best rehearsing place a band could think of and they started experimenting and putting the music together, mainly based on the ideas of Dirk and the Bolten brothers.
Emerging from the punk-era, Mecano is best described as new wave, adding poetry and remarkable arrangements, colored with unusual guitar harmonies, converting into an ashtonishing eclectric blend. Early 1980 newly founded Torso Records had released the mini-lp Untitled and in that same year Subtitled (see Eurotour-stage 12), both nowadays reaching high prices amongst collectors . After that the band split up, to be reunited in 1982 without Ton Lebbink and Pieter Kooyman and a smaller size Mecano started recording Autoportrait, which came out early ‘83 and on which Pieter Kooyman is present on Suggestive Sleep and To Life's Reunion.
Mecano released, The Half Inch Universe, a double cd containing their remastered eighties work with some unreleased (live) material in 2002. But then after 22 years of comparative silence Mecano released 'Snake Tales for Dragon 'in 2005 . For a long time, Tejo Bolten had felt the will to start Mecano again… there was a mission to fulfill and it was unfinished. Sadly, it was the murder of the Dutch film director Theo van Gogh in 2004 by a radical Islamist who had felt offended by the artist’s stance. This loss triggered singer Dirk Polak a promise upon his dead body that he would sing again. In January 2005 Tejo Bolten and Dirk Polak, brought their music and lyrics to another level with the release of the album 'Snake Tales for Dragon'. As a metaphore of the Meccano toy found years ago “for the engineer of tomorrow”, Tejo and Dirk reassembled the parts of the original structure and began to build a whole new story for Mecano. They presented it along with older material in Athens, Greece where they are rather popular, the following year at the capital’s long-running annual Rockwave Festival.
Fall 2007 Mecano released “Those Revolutionary Days”, a continuation of the album Autoportrait. According to the band, its new album was conceived as “the scenario for nostalgia enlightened with a modern vision.” Mecano shares with the audience a reacting to society instead of assuming a passive attitude towards it. The extraordinary voice of their music communicate many important messages for all to listen. A voice that comes through the ages, to speak of truth and justice, and hope. There will be repeated performances and exhibitions will be given abroad, in Greece and France, among others.
An invitation to play in Tel Aviv in 2013 brought the third incarnation of Mecano, from now on called.Mecano Un-Ltd. Polak, Ritsema, Karucci and Rozenblum were accompanied by Peter Jessen (bass) and Sin (drums). An international company, with Dutch, Israeli, half-Danish and Croatian members.
Another album came when Polak and Ness joined together. The result, Mecano Unlimited, took them a year and a half. Mick mainly played, produced and mixed, while Dirk wrote, sang and engaged in the appearance of the LP. Reinier Rietvelt did the sound and Charles Beterams of Tonefloat released it, along with Mecano's Out of Print Records and some help from fans and friends. This led to a fourth incarnation, with almost the same band as in Tel Aviv; Rozenblum left the band. In addition to several visits to Dutch stages, in 2017 they played again for the fans in Tel Aviv. In 2018 they performed in a sold out pop venue in Athens, they are preparing for a continuation of this world tour.
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The Dutch band Mecano existed from 1978 to 1983. It was not a pop group in the usual sense of the word, but rather a 'collective' that also focused on painting and literature. In the early years, their new wave music was still strongly influenced by English bands, later the band got a more European sound. The double-cd The Half Inch Universe contains all the studio tracks that the band has ever recorded, supplemented with a few previously unreleased live versions. Remastered Completed Works 1978-1982 a unique 2,5 hours long document !
Mecano - The 1/2" Universe 1 (flac 537mb)
01 Meccano 5:47
02 Permanent Revolt 4:06
03 Note Of A Stroll In Spring 5:13
04 In Still Life 4:25
05 Links 6:02
06 Escape The Human Myth 3:31
07 History Landmarked 4:57
08 Dissident Lament 4:33
09 Untitled 5:06
10 Posterity Chant 2:58
11 The Chassis Force 2:45
12 Robespierre's Remarks 3:56
13 Iron I An Eye 3:13
14 Killroy's Tango 2:34
15 State Of Apprehension 2:57
16 Dissident Lament (Live) 4:33
17 Posterity Chant (Live) 3:12
18 To Life's Re-union (Live) 2:33
19 In The Wake Of The Cold (Live) 6:28
Mecano - The 1/2" Universe 1 (ogg 201mb)
Mecano - The 1/2" Universe 2 (flac 533mb)
01 Robespierre's Remarks II 2:27
02 Room For Two 5:40
03 Profile 6:01
04 The Suggestive Sleep 8:31
05 Entr'Acte 3:59
06 Besprizorni 5:08
07 Autumnmatic Play 5:36
08 The Mutant Jasz 5:33
09 The March Of The Iron Workers 4:36
10 To Life's Re-Union 2:42
11 Face Cover Face 2:25
12 Fools 2:16
13 Save Machmen From Instinct (Live) 2:50
14 Necropspy Proves The Pagan (Live) 3:03
15 Gossip's A Gap (Live) 4:19
16 Note Of A Stroll In Spring (Live) 5:21
17 Links (Live) 6:19
Mecano - The 1/2" Universe 2 (ogg 193mb)
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Often stern, occasionally humorous, sometimes both at once, Dutch post-punk experimentalists Minny Pops formed in Amsterdam in 1978. They made their recorded debut the following year on Plurex, a label operated by band vocalist Wally Van Middendorp. The three-track 7" single contained "Kojak," on which Van Middendorp impersonated Telly Savalas' TV character of the same name with lines like "If you make more money, you make fewer friends." Drastic Measures, Drastic Movement, the band's debut album, followed later in the year, and offered more lean, mechanical sketches and abrasive noise diversions.
After a handful of gigs in support of Joy Division and the release of a live EP, Minny Pops joined the Factory roster and, during 1981 and 1982, bounced between Factory proper and Factory's secondary Benelux division. A re-recording of "Dolphin's Spurt," produced by Martin Hannett and engineered by Chris Nagle, appeared in 1981, while the relatively slicker album Sparks in a Dark Room came the following year. Two more albums, Poste Restante and 4th Floor, were released on Plurex and Prime prior to the band's 1985 dissolution. The band, still led by Van Middendorp, reconvened in 2012 for several gigs, as well as a single recorded by fan Tim Burgess (of the Charlatans). Archival releases and reissues of the band's '70s and '80s output appeared on LTM and Factory Benelux.
Minny Pops - Sparks In A Dark Room (flac 410mb)
01 A Feeling 3:19
02 Tracking 2:47
03 Crack 2:24
04 Vital 2:37
05 Blue Roses 2:33
06 Mountain 3:15
07 Black Eye 3:19
08 Wong 3:56
09 Experience 3:29
10 Dream 2:06
11 Night Visit 3:02
12 Trance 1:52
13 Time 3:44
14 Lights 3:29
15 Een Kus 3:56
16 Son 2:53
17 Secret Story (Demo) 3:12
18 Schitterende Ogen (Demo) 2:44
19 Time (Demo) 4:28
20 Werktitel # 7 2:21
21 Werktitel # 5 3:33
22 Werktitel # 1 5:57
23 Werktitel # 8 2:09
Minny Pops - Sparks In A Dark Room (ogg 159mb)
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