Monday, April 10, 2006

PACIFIC STATE

So that’s it, the news about the site is out, and it feels a bit weird. The response has so far been very kind and supportive, which is very heart-warming.

Of course, I have plans for the site, so it’s not the end as such, but I am taking a bit of time off, so I feel a bit like I’ve had a whole part of me taken away. It is funny to think that something so apparently trivial can take so much space in one’s life… It probably explains a lot… dunno.

Anyway, since I took the decision that this latest issue would also be the last edition of themilkfactory, at least in its present form, and for a while, I have actually started enjoying music for what it is again. Having part of my CD collection accessible again probably helps a lot too.


Part of the newly accessible CD stock...


808 STATE: Prebuild (Rephlex, 2005)

For some reason, I’ve felt the urge to play all the 808 State albums I have this morning, chronologically, not by release date but by when the music was actually conceived… well, almost as I started with Newbuild and went on to Prebuild. Clearly, it should have been the other way round, but never mind. The music on these two albums sounds incredibly fresh and cool, even now. Shows how far ahead the band was back then.


808 STATE: Ex-el (ZTT, 1991)

I then moved onto the wonderful 90 and Ex:el (my favourite). Pacific 202 is still such a major goosebump tune, and the rest of 90 is about as perfect as it gets. From the first bars of Magical Dreams, I am dragged all the way back to 1989 when I first heard this album and didn’t quite know what to make of it. I don’t know whether I would have been at the heart of it all if I’d lived in Manchester, or the UK, back then (knowing me, I probably wouldn’t kept on the periphery looking in...), but it surely was something. When I interviewed Graham Massey (fuck yes, I did that, and that’s one of my big milkfactory moments), via email, he actually apologised for “waffling on”, but reading his comments on the Hacienda years and the early 808 State days was just so fantastic. It actually made me wish I’d been around then.
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As I said above, my favourite 808 State album HAS to be Ex:el. Although the sound was probably softer than on previous records, there are just so many fantastic tunes on it, from the Bernard Sumner and Björk collabs (Spanish Heart and Qmart and Ooops respectively), Olympic, Cübik, In Yer Face, Leo Leo, Nephatiti… I could just about list the whole album. Qmart and Ooops were actually the first tracks featuring Björk I could listen without cringing. Before that, I just couldn’t stand her voice. How things change…

The only 808 State album that didn't make it to my playlist is Gorgeous, for two rather good reasons: a) it is still at my parents, and b) I've never got on well with it, to the point where I actually stopped buying any 808 State record after that, until Newbuild that it. I've been told that Don Solaris is way better than Gorgeous, so I might get tempted when ZTT re-edit it soon...

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