The Public Records 5/31/19
Welcome, Public Recordeers, to our last installment of May 2019’s Euronation album of the week. We’ve hit different corners of the continent and heard music from three different langauge families: Uralic, Romance, and Slavic. This week, we’ll add one more – Germanic (English) – and head due west. In fact, we’re going so far west that we’ll actually be taking a short hop off the continent and wind up in England.
A people known for their stellar 20th century musicians in all sorts of genres, the English are not ones for settling down comfortably in any school of music. From rock to reggae, artists from England constantly pushed the boundaries and set the tone for the rest of the world to follow.
The electronically based second half of the 20th century was no exception. Disco, new wave, and synth pop were like putty in these sonic sculptures’ hands; and this week that is what we’re going to focus on. Presenting with the utmost pleasure, The Public Records shares with you M’s New York – London – Paris – Munich (Sire, 1979).
M was one of musician Robin Edmond Scott’s many projects. A writer, producer, director, musician, Scott was well ahead of his time in every genre. Working with all sorts of big names very early in their careers in all sorts of capacities, Scott took these experiences and in 1978 wrote a semi-autobiographical tune ‘Pop Muzik’ which became of a Top 40s single – No. 2 in the UK and No. 1 in the US.
Featuring his brother, Julian (bass), wife Brigit Novik (vocals), John Lewis (computers), and Wally Badarou (keyboards), this single led to the full length album New York – London – Paris – Munich which was recorded in Montreux, Switzerland with the same group of musicians with the additions of Phil Gould (drums), Gary Barnacle (flute & saxophone), and even David Bowie (hand claps).
Another single from this album, ‘Moonlight and Muzak’. Hitting number 33 in the charts, this tune was about Scott’s experiences and fascination with the Muzak Organization (from music & kodak) and their experiments in factory produced tunes and research into ‘stimulus progression’ and its affects on mood and behavior.
New York – London – Paris – Munich is a great sendoff for the introduction to Euronation and how a little rebelliousness of good old fashioned American jazz and rock and roll could influence the world. Be sure to influence your listening experience with that classic English cocktail, the gin and tonic; specifically a St. George Botanivore.