Saturday, February 21, 2009

Living In Texas - Kingdom EP

From a fan's perspective, one of the worse practices that the major labels refined in the 80s was a long wait between albums, the limitation of bands' releases to a mere trickle to be dispensed every few years. In the 60s it was not uncommon for bands to release two or more albums per year, then the 70s ushered in the one-album-per-year schedule. But in the 80s the labels found they could keep working an album for years, gradually releasing songs as singles to prop up sales of the album. (I blame Michael Jackson's Thriller for this practice.) The flip side was that independent labels found another way to compete with the majors: in addition to releasing fresher, more adventurous music, they could release it at a faster pace, without necessarily waiting for an entire album's worth of material. A band could produce a steady stream of singles and EPs (4-6 songs) to keep put music in front of the public several times a year. (And with the impending demise of the CD we may see that model come back.) That was a double-edged sword for fans: more music from favorite bands is a good thing, but the vagaries of independent distribution also made it easy to miss something. Thus it is that twenty-odd years after the fact I am still finding music by Living In Texas that I missed when it was new. One of those records is the Kingdom EP, released by the band on their own Chainsaw label in 1984, consisting of four songs:
  1. Department Store Graveyard
  2. Kingdom 2
  3. Lollipop Sperm
  4. Godemocrafasc

"Department Store Graveyard" is an odd gothic dirge; "Kingdom 2," previously presented here in a live version (as "Kingdom III"), benefits from a studio recording. The long jam is similar in structure and rhythm to the great early Modern English B-side "The Perfect View" but with more energy. The two songs on the flip side bring in the "jungle" drums for the band's trademark "voodoo gothic rock" sound. Kingdom is another top-notch release from an overlooked band; get the rip here or here, and check back for more archival material from Living In Texas.


Anonymous said...

This one would be great

postp said...

Thanks for all the LiT. Was a big fan. In '84, sent my brother - who was living in the UK at the time - some money and a list of bands I had only read about in obscure 'zines. He returned home with LiT and I was hooked. Saw them once in London. Great, great show. I have one later item: Believe from '91. To show my gratitude, can I get you the two Onyx singles? Call of the Wild, a-side of SOS... wow!

Fantod said...

Postp, thanks for the note; I also have Believe in the queue to be ripped and posted along with some earlier material from a compilation (including "Awaken"). I regret I never saw LiT live.

Regarding the two Onyx singles: YES, PLEASE!!! Do you have any information about them? You can contact me at funderglass at yahoo dot com.

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