Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Cover Me Impressed: 'Balloon Song'

One of my favorite albums from the impressive catalog of Slumberland Records is the Aisler Set's 'The Last Match.' Although the band's home base was San Francisco and the record came out in 2000, you would swear it came from the UK in 1986. That's why the one cover on 'The Last Match' is such a perfect, well, match.

I'll let the band describe today's song... straight from the liner notes: "Ballon song was written by The Fourteen Iced Bears. The original can be found on their "Frank" single released in 1987 on capra, on the thunderball records compilation "precision," or on the 14 iced bears/hermit crabs split flexi also released in 1987. We love 'em."

'The Last Match' became SLR 62. The band probably didn't know that about a year later Slumberland would assemble a fantastic compilation of 14 Iced Bears' work. 'In the Beginning' would become SLR 65 and the definitive recollection of the C86 vets' heyday for many years. It's out of print now, but I recently read Cherry Red has picked up the slack with a double-disc reissue of everything 14 Iced Bears just this year.

Along with the cover, I'm including the two versions of "Balloon Song" I have from 'In the Beginning.' Most bands get harder, faster and rawer when they get into the studio for a Peel Session, but 14 Iced Bears toned it down quite a bit. At any rate, both takes, as well as the Aisler Set's cover, are a fantastic bit of jangle.

14 Iced Bears - Balloon Song (mp3)
14 Iced Bears - Balloon Song (Peel Session) (mp3)
The Aislers Set - Balloon Song (mp3)

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