V/A Prophecy + Progress: UK Electronics 1978 – 1990 LP

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This categorically isn't simply another generic synthpop compilation, or some indulgent, nostalgic frippery, but showcases an eclectic mix of acts that were experimenting with newly available technology at a time when the punk scene had imploded and the music press was busy fabricating new genres in an attempt to continue its legacy (although synth-pop in part arose from punk rock, it abandoned punk's emphasis on authenticity and often pursued a deliberate artificiality, drawing on the critically derided forms such as disco and glam rock). Although electronic experimentation had been explored in the decades before, it was still considered alien, "eerie, sterile, vaguely menacing", and even downright austere and fascistic.

It may have been the likes of Gary Numan or Depeche Mode et al. that switched the record-buying public on to synthesizer music, but bubbling underground were a myriad of experimenters recording in relative secrecy in industrial cities like Sheffield or post-war London, at a time when the Tories had come into power and utterly altered the political landscape, producing a generation of, Thatchers Children (selfish, arrogant and materialistic). The antidote manifested as quiet rebellion in the shape of dark and alienating soundscapes by acts that are now considered pioneers, or have achieved cult status in a new era of throwaway pop and trite new wave impersonators.

Many of the acts herein will be familiar to followers of synth or industrial music, some perhaps lesser known. Weve also included slightly later works by artists that were already firmly established in the early 80s as a comparison (and for the pure arrogance of it). Its an attempt to rekindle those heady days of experimentation and to encourage new generations to rebel and forgo the fashionable posturing that comes with anything deemed vaguely interesting.


"Peripheral Minimal define UK new wave, industrial and post-punk electronics 1978-1990 via 13 tracks from Clock DVA, John Avery, Colin Potter, Five Times of Dust and more. Look out for highlights in Schleimer Ks alien yet curiously emotive Women [1981], a wild cut-up from The Anti Group c. 1986, and first time vinyl appearances of John Costellos eerie obscurity Total Shutdown and John Averys spiralling ace 12am and Looking Down [1990]."




A1. Clock DVA – Lomticks of Time (1978)

A2. Vice Versa – Idol (1979)

A3. Colin Potter – Number 5 (1980)

A4. Konstruktivists – Vision Speed (1981)

A5. Naked Lunch – Rabies (1981)

A6. Five Times of Dust – Automation (1981)


B1: Schleimer K – Women (1981)

B2: V-Sor,X – Conversation With (1981)

B3: Attrition – Beast of Burden (2006 Remaster) (1984)

B4: Peter Hope + David Harrow – Too Hot (1986)

B5: John Costello – Total Shutdown (1986)

B6: T.A.G.C. – Further and Evident Meanings (1986)

B7: John Avery – 12AM and Looking Down (1990)