Saturday, October 20, 2012

The Servants' Lost Album Resurrected

If you worship at the altar of NME's 'C86' compilation, there's reason to rejoice. Think back to track five, side two. That's where most of us were introduced to the dreamy jangle of the Servants. The song, "Transparent," would also appear in '86 as the B-side to the band's first single, "She's Always Hiding." There was also a four-song 12" around that time that featured the cerebral "The Sun, a Small Star." Unfortunately, it would be 1990 before the Servants released a full-length album. All of the usual industry drama played a part in the lengthy delay: Personnel changes (including the addition of Luke Haines), a solo album by frontman David Westlake, label switches and budget cuts. The aptly named 'Disinterest' was worth the wait, and critics liked it, but many fickle fans had moved on to new sounds.

Westlake and Haines would also move on, and they would do quite well in their separate endeavors, but not before working on a followup to 'Disinterest.' Alas, only the lads themselves and a few friends would ever hear it... until now. Cherry Red Records, my heroes, will release 'Small Time' later this month. It includes a second disc, 'Hey Hey We're The Manqués,' chock full of early takes that would later become 'Disinterest.' This entire set has been assembled and cleaned up by Westlake himself, and Haines has penned the liner notes. Since it's on Cherry Red, I'm sure it will be very well done.

Here's a tune from one of my prized religious artifacts, 'CD86: 48 Tracks Taken From the Birth of Indie Pop.'

The Servants - The Sun, a Small Star (mp3)

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