[1981] – ‘Brain’ Mix (2005)

‘Brain’ is the third Musicophilia-posted mix from the ‘1981′ box set, and pretty much the precise inverse of the poppy, breezy, songwriter-oriented sound and feeling of the last mix posted, ‘Convertible‘. And I’d concede it’s probably a little less accessible than the first mix posted, the beat-oriented ‘Feet‘ mix. These tracks are the mutant sons and daughters of musique concrete; late 60s/early 70s weirdos like the Residents, White Noise, Bruce Haack; Germans like Cluster and Faust. This stuff is often aggressive, frequently dark, a combination of the visceral and the experimental. That said, there’s a distinct sense of humor running through it all, even if the humor is a little black, and the music manages to be pretty catchy, too. If you’re at all post-punk-curious, this is essential territory.

Featured names include Germans Klaus Nomi, Trio, Einstruzende Neubauten; Brits like Matt Johnson (of The The, presaging Disco Inferno), Fire Engines, Flying Lizards, and the Birthday Party; No Wave elites DNA and Glenn Branca; post-Henry Cow RIOers Art Bears, Homosexuals and This Heat; agit-prop Crass and The Ex; and essential American art-pranksters like Chrome, The Residents, Negativland, and Pere Ubu. It might have made more sense to post this one on Halloween, and the closer-to-celebratory ‘Convertible’ mix after the recent good news here in America. But this is a good one for those flashbacks to the creeping paranoia and anger of the last eight years—this is the sound of smiling through it all, with panache and wit. For more information about the whole ‘1981’ series, read more here. Full tracklist and download link after the “more…”.

1 9 8 1 | Brain

01 Art Bears – Truth [2:55]
02 The Birthday Party – Cry [2:41]
03 Glenn Branca – Structure [3:04]
04 Klaus Nomi – The Twist [3:06]
05 Ex, The – Weapons for El Salvador [2:43]
06 Flying Lizards – Hands 2 Take [4:06]
07 Negativland – Dearmary [1:49]
08 New Age Steppers – Crazy Dreams & High Ideas [2:58]
09 Lemon Kittens – Kites [3:29]
10 Trio – Kummer [2:40]
11 Pere Ubu – Lonesome Cowboy Dave [1:52]
12 The Residents – Would We Be Alive [3:20]
13 Matt Johnson – The River Flows East In Spring [1:33]
14 Eyeless in Gaza – The Decoration [2:45]
15 Einstürzende Neubauten – Abstieg & Zerfall [4:28]
16 Fire Engines – Candyskin [2:54]
17 Section 25 – Hit [2:50]
18 Crass – Bata Motel [3:28]
19 Liaisons Dangereuses – Aperitif De La Mort [1:37]
20 Crash Course in Science – Factory Forehead [3:00]
21 Foetus – Thank Heaven for Push Button Phones [4:26]
22 Cabaret Voltaire – A Touch Of Evil [1:52]
23 Chrome – Planet Strike [2:25]
24 DNA – Blonde Red Head [1:52]
25 Clock DVA – 4 Hours [3:52]
26 Homosexuals – Nursery Chymes [2:40]
27 Wim Mertins – Multiple 12 [1:00]
28 This Heat – Makeshift Swahili [3:54]

[Total Time: 79:20]

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