Sunday, July 31, 2016

ABCs of My Vinyl Collection (Letter C, Part 18)

Capping off my least productive month in seven-plus years of blogging with an all-time favorite. A trip to the shelves shows an even dozen pieces of vinyl from Lloyd Cole. As someone who switched almost exclusively to CDs in 1988, it's no surprise that 11 of the 12 are from the Commotions era. Only a 12" of "No Blue Skies" bucks the trend. In overall quantity, vinyl beats CD by a whisker in my Cole sections, but I go to both formats with regularity. My gaping hole in the collection is the four-disc set 'Cleaning Out the Ashtrays.' I really do need that one.

Today's selection is from the 'Easy Pieces' era. Although it was a smash, some fans don't think it holds a candle to debut album 'Rattlesnakes.' That's a tad bit harsh. 'Rattlesnakes' is perfect. 'Easy Pieces' is not. It's still better than almost anything that came out in 1985. The 12" single of "Cut Me Down" was released in several different versions around the world. For once, those of us in America got a great tracklist:

"Cut Me Down" (Extended Remix)
"Lost Weekend" (Extended Mix)
"Forest Fire" (Live)
"Perfect Skin" (Live)

Depending on where you lived (or how good an import section you had access to), your B-sides may have included an instrumental take of "Perfect Blue," a 7" remix of "Cut Me Down," studio versions of "Forest Fire" and "Are You Ready to Be Heartbroken?" or a live version of "Are You Ready to Be Heartbroken?" Based on those selections, it seems early fans weren't the only ones enamored with 'Rattlesnakes.'

10 comments:

charity chic said...

You are quite right about Easy pieces Brain. Not a bad album at all but anything would have struggled to follow Rattlesnakes

The Swede said...

'Easy Pieces' suffered by comparison to 'Rattlesnakes', in much the same way as, for example, 'Blind' by The Sundays suffered by comparison to 'Reading Writing and Arithmetic'. If either of those 2nd albums had actually been their debuts, I'm certain they would've been viewed far more favourably.
Hoping to catch Lloyd again later in the year - it's been a while.

McPop said...

I've grown to appreciate Easy Pieces nearly as much as Rattlesnakes. Have them both on CD and vinyl. I too need to pick up Cleaning out ashtrays.

kevinpat said...

Sorry guys. I got nothing.

Brian said...

I'm with McPop on all counts. I wish Cole appreciated the album as much as we do. Hasn't always had kind words for it.

friend of rachel worth said...

Love Rich , one of the best things he has done. Easy pieces is a great LP but it is still in 3rd place. Mainstream for me is the misunderstood classic

Brian said...

Touché! Mainstream gets plenty of plays around here too, FORW. So do my 12" singles from that time. You are right to point out it doesn't get the love it deserves. Oh, and big fan of Rich too. Probably the best from Easy Pieces.

Judge Pop said...

Easy Pieces is actually my most played Lloyd Cole album and one I still play about once a month. I probbaly agree that Rattlesankes is 'better' and a truly great album but something about "Why I Love Country Music" et al makes them ever present on my playlist.

Brian said...

Great to hear that, Judge! A fine tune it is.

JC said...

All three albums are worthy.

Very worthy.

Claening Out The Ashtrays is a great boxset.