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Friday, 9 October 2015

Wild Party

A Certain Ratio were one of the key Factory Records acts but always seemed to live in the shadows of Joy Division and New Order. Their early releases were austere scratchy affairs, songs like Do The Du were masterpieces of taut bass, clipped guitar, chanted vocals, short back and sides haircuts with army shorts. By 1985 they'd lost singer Simon Topping and made records like Wild Party, funk with slap bass, busy percussion, bassist Jez Kerr on vox and a definite northern sensibility. You can dance to it but you'd keep your coat while doing so to keep out the cold.

Wild Party

They left Factory and signed to a major (A&M) but the commercial breakthrough never really came. It didn't stop them making some great records. Twenty five years ago last month they released ACR:MCR, a record infused with the sound of house music and new technology, one of the best British albums of the period.


C said...

I wasn't familiar with this era ACR, only having heard their very early output, but I enjoyed this a lot, thanks. To my ears it seems hard to put in a timeframe; I mean, if you'd said it was a new release I'd have believed you.

londonlee said...

'Flight' and their 'Sextet' album are two of my favourite Factory records

Echorich said...

Here! Here! SA!! ACR deserves so much more than they've ever gotten from the public, journalists or critics. ACR was the sound of Factory for me. They did it all and they did it all REALLY well.
By the time they left Factory, they were little more than a name on the roster in the minds of those manning that sinking ship. A&M was a lifeline for them to explore even more and resulted in a number of releases which were among the high points in their career.
I will agree with londonlee here - Sextet is my favorite ACR album. It is music from a different zone.

Jake Sniper said...

ACR:MCR was my first introduction to ACR and maybe because of that it is my favourite. An album I listen every few months or when something reminds me of it.

Walter said...

I really love your Factory series, bringing back some good memories of bands I didn't listen to the recent days. And 'Sextet' is a monument of these days.