Sunday, October 13, 2013

Double Your Pleasure With the Colour Field

X, Madness, Talk Talk, Fishbone, TMBG, Tin Machine, Talulah Gosh... here's another in a long line of bands with songs to match their monikers. After the Specials and Fun Boy Three, Terry Hall formed the Colour Field with a couple of fellas from 2-Tone vets the Swinging Cats. "The Colour Field" was the group's first single, released in 1984, and the song was a great introduction to the lush work found on their debut album, 'Virgins & Philistines,' in 1985. It's the only essential post-Specials album by Hall, and I still listen to it quite often. If you disagree with that point, feel free to let me know.

Here is the extended 12" of that first single. It's only about a minute longer than the version found on the original release of 'Virgins & Philistines,' but it's really good. These days you can get both takes on the Cherry Red reissue of the album. Here is a rip from my aging 12" vinyl.

The Colour Field - The Colour Field (Extended Version) (mp3)

Does anyone else hear a little of Echo & the Bunnymen's "The Cutter" in there somewhere?


Echorich said...

The Colourfield definitely bridged pop and post punk at a time when things were changing in music - and not for the better. Yes there is a Bunnymen feel here - hleps that Pete De Frietas does drum on the album as well - Liverpool connections are strong ones it would seem, and Ian Broudie and Hugh Jones twiddled the knobs.
Now I do have to disagree with your assessment of Hall post Specials.
I think the first Fun Boy Three album is a fantastic extension of the direction The Specials could have gone. After More Specials and 81's Ghost Town, things were up in the air and Dammers went in one direction and Hall with Staples and Goulding took another, but the core was still there.
While Deception was completely more pop, it's got a sophistication that was ahead of its time.
But aside from Virgins & Philistines, it's his solo album from 95, Home, which I treasure. Broudie was back and he collaborated with the likes of Craig Gannon and Andy Partridge to produce a shiny pop album amid the boredom of Britpop. The First Attack Of Love is a great favorite of mine. Again there were some Liverpool heavyweights on board as well in the Bunnymen's Les Pattison and former Icicle Works/La's Chris Sharrock/Wild Swans.

Brian said...
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Brian said...

I knew you would take the bait, but I'm still impressed with how far you took the rebuttal. I like the two FB3 records, but I'm not sure I would consider them essential.

Your assessment of two records has me thinking I need to dig deeper. I own Deception, but I haven't listened to it in years. I will go back and give it another go. Seems like I have missed out. I don't have Home, but your passion for this one has me thinking I will seek it out. I lived in Asia when it was released, and I have a big hole in my musical knowledge during that time away. Thanks again.

Echorich said...

I'm happy to hear your assessments of both Deception and Home. I came to enjoy Deception 5 or 6 yrs after it's release to be honest, but I really love it.
As for Home, it is all about the writing and the purity that Hall put into the record.
And as for having a gap in your musical knowledge in the mid 90's, in retrospect that is probably not a bad thing. I would be hard pressed to think of 10 albums from that era that are really important to me... I was swimming deep in soulful house music during that period because rock & roll and pop just consistently disappointed me.

Luca said...

I loved Deception even if the production makes the songs a little plasticky. I still find myself singing 'Miss Texas 1967' under the shower.
I'm also the proud owner of the Vegas album Terry Hall did with David A. Stewart and I happen to like that too, even the Charles Aznavour cover, so what do I know.
During the nineties I was swimming in the same soulful house pool that Echorich was diving deep in, it's a wonder we never hit each other! Ah, those Danny Krivit edits..

Echorich said...

Luca - you hit the nail on the head! Danny Krivit, Sunday afternoons at Body & Soul in NYC with Joe Claussel at the decks as well. Wednesday nights with Louie Vega's Underground Network and Fridays at Sound Factory Bar with Frankie Knuckles upstairs and David Morales in the basement...BLISS! That was LIVING in NYC for me in those days.
I agree as well that Deception's biggest flaw is the production, but Mss Texas 1967 should have been a huge hit! As for Vegas, it took me forever, but I finally got a copy about 4 yrs ago on a trip to London. It's a great pairing & would have been wonderful to have heard more if anyone at the time had cared.

Luca said...

Well, now it's no wonder why we didn't hit each other, Echorich. You were in NYC experiencing the real thing, while I was in my small town in the north of Italy dancing in my kitchen, the most long-standing one-man disco in the history of mankind, thirty years and still running, free drinks'n'all!
Jokes aside, you really should tell us about those days (and nights) in your blog: I for one would be very interested in you recalling what was it like being at the centre of it all during one of the most exciting times for dance music (p.s. sorry Brian for having hijacked your wonderful blog for our conversation).