Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas To You

My wish for you is peace and prosperity, now and in the upcoming year!

May the "Front 242 Force" be with you!

Here are my 2010 "Front 242 Postcards"...with some apologies to the band!  

Never Stop! Having a wonderful Christmas!

Is this the kind of Christmas you'd like to do?

Hey poor! You don't have to be Santa!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Compilation of the Week: New Wave Club Class X 2

From Antler Subway Records and distributed by Play It Again Sam! comes "New Wave Club Class X 2". There are at least 6 other records in the "New Wave Club Class X" series, but this being the only one featuring Front 242. (There is also a box set that features 7 volumes, but the content is the same.) It has the catalogue number AS 5060 CD.

This compilation album is the second volume in a series "documenting the underground sounds of the early eighties. Not for the sake of nostalgia, but because the influence of so much of the music from this era is still apparent these days..."

Of Front 242, the liner notes state:
"Belgium's pride Front 242 made their debut with the single "Principles", but it was with its pulsating successor "U-Men" ('82) that they forced their first breakthrough. The rest is history: the commando-unit's electronic body music since then has acquired them dedicated fans all over the world."

Other highlights for me include Anne Clark, Luc Van Acker, and Bauhaus. I would argue that The Clash's "London Calling" belongs on a punk CD rather than a new wave CD but that is a discussion for another day...

This edition is not too hard to find on the secondary market. Expect to pay around $15-$18

Track Listing:

  1. Bauhaus:  "Passion of Lovers"
  2. The Clash:  "London Calling"
  3. Theatre of Hate:  "Westworld"
  4. Anne Clark:  "Sleeper In Metropolis"
  5. Front 242:  "U-Men"
  6. Repetition:  "A Full Rotation"
  7. A Certain Ratio:  "Shack Up"
  8. Slab!:  "Mars On Ice"
  9. Grauzone:  "Eisbaer"
  10. Luc Van Acker:  "Zanna"
  11. Department S:  "Is Vic There?"
  12. No More:  "Suicide Commando"
  13. The Bollock Brothers:  "Horror Movies"
  14. Severed Heads:  "The Ant Can See Legs"
New Wave Club Class X 2 CD Insert

New Wave Club Class X 2 CD Liner Notes

New Wave Club Class X 2 CD Jewel Case

New Wave Club Class X 2 CD 

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

T-Shirt of the Week: UP EVIL TOUR 93 (Black Long Sleeve)

Here we have another variation of the 1993 UP EVIL TOUR "Gargoyle" shirt. This is the long sleeve version that was sold at the shows during the North American Tour that followed Front 242's stint on Lollapalooza '93.

It is a beautiful shirt with excellent detailed screened work with the very striking "242 Gargoyle" in orange, yellow and red hues. (Some mistakenly think of this as a devil or demon, but it is in fact a gargoyle and was used extensively throughout the design process of the album and tour, including the giant backdrop that was seen on stage.)

This shirt is long sleeved and has gold "242 swirls" on the sides of each arm. The Tour dates are listed on back. And the 242 logo stands out in nice gold tones as well.

This particular shirt was purchased at the St. Louis show and is in excellent shape and occasionally still worn today!


UP EVIL TOUR 93 Detail

UP EVIL TOUR 93 Sleeve Detail "Swirls"

UP EVIL TOUR 93 Reverse

UP EVIL TOUR 93 Reverse Detail

Monday, December 20, 2010

Bootleg of the Week: A Concert For You Bootleg Tape

Long before the days of the internet, the best and almost only place to obtain good Front 242 bootlegs was mailorder and direct communication with fellow fans.

Here is a cassette tape entitled "A Concert >For You<" and was recorded at Fryshuset, Stockholm, Sweden on March 16, 1991. It was released by "Slow Death Productions" and has the 'catalogue'  number SD-002
It contains 19 tracks of fair quality (as cassettes go) material.
2 of the tracks on this tape, Take One and Sacrifice, can be found on the CD bootleg "Body Beats." (See Bootleg of the Week, August 5, 2010)

The insert is nicely made for the time and this particular copy is #2 of "Limited Edition 100 Copies"

I have very little information about this tape and honestly cannot recall where I obtained it! Likely as a trade from a fellow 242 fan.
Any additional information, or if you were at that show especially, comments always welcome!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Memorabilia of the Week: UP EVIL Window Cling

Here is another one of those unusual esoteric Front 242 promotional items: the UP EVIL window cling!

Designed to be displayed on glass windows, this cling spotlights the release of "06:21:03:11 UP EVIL" on RRE Records. It is quite colorful and measures 8.25 by 11 inches and can be applied to shop windows, automobiles, or any glass material in which you care to share your 242 UP EVIL love!

UP EVIL promotional window cling

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Record of the Week: Epic 242 Catalogue Promo CD

With Front 242 signing to a "major label" in 1991, along with a wider exposure audience came a bevy of promotional CDs and material.
Here we have an important and collectible piece, the Back Catalogue Promo CD.
Issued with the catalogue number ESK 4488, this CD features 16 tracks from the Front 242 Back Catalogue as re-issued by Epic/Sony.
With the re-issue of Front's previous albums came new artwork and some unreleased material. This CD is essentially a "Best Of" sampler for the most part. It features 2 tracks from each of Front's albums up to "Tyranny >For You<" and 4 tracks from the EP "Mixed By Fear"

The artwork here is another case of 'less is more.' The bright and colorful spheres play nicely against the black and white background and 242 logo. The CD is simple as well, but overall presents itself as a nice package and introduction to Front 242.

The inside liner notes are also very complimentary and hopefully can be read from the scan.

Although at one time this was something of a Front 242 rarity, it seems much more common today and can usually be found for $10-$25

Track List:

  1. "Operating Tracks"
  2. "U-Men"
  3. "No Shuffle"
  4. "Body To Body"
  5. "Quite Unusual"
  6. "Masterhit Part I & II"
  7. "Headhunter V3.0"
  8. "Welcome To Paradise"
  9. "Funkhadafi"
  10. "Don't Crash"
  11. "Soul Manager"
  12. "Tragedy >For You<"
  13. "DSM 01"
  14. "DSM 02"
  15. "DSM 03"
  16. "DSM 04"
Front Picture Sleeve

Back Picture Sleeve

Insert Liner Notes

Jewel Case Insert

Epic 242 Catalogue Promo CD

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Poster of the Week: Tyranny For You RRE Poster

Here we have a beautiful poster issued by RRE Records to promote the album "Tyranny >For You<"
The poster itself measures 16 inches by 23.5 inches and is on glossy paper stock. The colorful "swimmer" plays beautifully against the black background and really "pops." Front 242 has always had an eye for iconography and logo, and the 242 and "Tyranny" symbols are played up here to full effect.
The bottom lists the various formats one could find for the album, with their respective catalogue numbers.

This poster is listed on Transmission 242 but is currently unavailable.
It retailed for $11 Euro.
This particular poster was purchased on the second-hand market, so I would imagine finding an unfolded version would be more valuable. I am unsure whether the posters sold by Transmission 242 were creased or rolled.

Tyranny For You RRE Poster

Tyranny For You RRE Poster Detail

Tyranny For You RRE Poster Detail

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Compilation of the Week: An Epic Tour De Force

Here we have another promotional Epic release that makes a great companion piece of sorts to the Lollapalooza '93 CD.
"An Epic Tour De Force" features 14 tracks from Epic/Sony artists who were touring during the summer of 1993. Along with Front 242 on the Lollapalooza Tour was Rage Against The Machine, and then we have the likes of the Spin Doctors, The The, Sun 60, and Screaming Trees.

The 242 tracks are the usual ones that one finds on most promos of this era: "Religion" and "Crapage."

This promo has the catalogue number ESK 5294. It is not all that common, but not necessarily in demand so expect to pay $5-$10

Track List:

  1. Spin Doctors: "What Time Is It?"
  2. Screaming Trees: "Dollar Bill"
  3. Rage Against The Machine: "Killing In The Name"
  4. The The: "Slow Emotion Replay (Live)"
  5. Front 242: "Religion"
  6. Sun 60: "Mary X Mess"
  7. Eve's Plum: "Blue"
  8. Eve's Plum: "Venus Meets Pluto"
  9. Sun 60: "Hold On"
  10. Front 242: "Crapage"
  11. The The: "Love Is Stronger Than Death"
  12. Rage Against The Machine: "Bombtrack"
  13. Screaming Trees: "No One Knows"
  14. Spin Doctors: "Jimmy Olsen's Blues (Live)"
An Epic Tour De Force picture sleeve

picture sleeve insert

Jewel Case Insert

An Epic Tour De Force CD

Monday, December 13, 2010

T-Shirt of the Week: Punish Your Machine (Original)

Here is another one of those iconic Front 242 T-Shirts...another original purchased in the early days of Transmission 242.
This shirt was released and for sale during and following the Tyranny Tour. It sports the screened "Tyranny" symbols on the front, with a play on the "For You". It is a nice light-weight heather gray and the use of yellow also made it "pop." (Although time has faded this one!)
The reverse also sports a favorite Front slogan/theme: "Punish Your Machine"

This was often a favorite of mine to exercise/run...a literal "Work 242"

This shirt is offered today on Transmission 242, although it does tend to sell out quite often. Fortunately its popularity has kept it in print!

Punish Your Machine T-Shirt (Front)

Punish Your Machine (Front Detail)

Punish Your Machine -Shirt (Reverse)

Punish Your Machine T-Shirt (Reverse Detail)

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Bootleg of the Week: Technopolis Volume 8

Finishing up Front 242's appearances on the bootleg "Technopolis" series, Volume 8 features the Front 242 Megamix, clocking in at over 12 minutes!  Note that the "Technopolis" series continues with additional volumes, but the remainder do not feature Front 242.

This edition is very collectible and somewhat harder to come by, as it also features other very collectible artists, including Depeche Mode, Erasure, The Cure, and Nitzer Ebb.
Of note, this volume also features Umo Detic and the track "Carpe Diem". Umo Detic was a side project of BiGod 20 and DJ Talla 2XLC. Talla 2XLC is the founder of Zoth Ommog Records, which released a version of Re:Boot and Jean-Luc would later record the excellent "The Bog" with BiGod 20. Both Front 242 and Talla 2XLC would later remix each other's work.

Track List:

  1. Front 242:  "Megamix"
  2. Depeche Mode:  "Shame (Live 1984)"
  3. Depeche Mode:  "Blasphemous Rumors (Live 1984)"
  4. Erasure:  "Lay All Your Love On Me (Art of Mix)"
  5. The Cure:  "Friday I'm In Love (Art of Mix)"
  6. Nitzer Ebb:  "Control I'm Here (Razormaid 93 Mix)"
  7. Umo Detic:  "Carpe Diem (Razormaid Mix)"
  8. Cabaret Voltaire:  "Keep On (Razormaid Mix)"
  9. Anne Clark:  "Our Darkness (Razormaid Mix)"
  10. 16 Bit:  "Where Are You? (Razormaid Mix)"

Technopolis Volume 8

Technopolis Volume 8 Jewel Case Insert

Technopolis Volume 8 Disc

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Memorabilia of the Week: Postcards For You

Here we have some of the most iconic Front 242 images throughout the years, as depicted on postcards.
These are not "officially endorsed" 242 products and were not available from Transmission 242, and therefore are in all likelihood, 'bootlegs.'
Each of these cards measure 16 cm by 10.5 cm and are on glossy card stock. The backs are unused. The first two presented here date to 1990 by Damaged Goods - London. The third perhaps is from "Disco 2000" and the last has no other identifying information.

These often pop up from time to time on ebay and are wonderful images to mail to fellow 242 Ranters!

Classic "Politics of Pressure" card from the Commando/Funkhadafi era!

Never Stop! Postcard

Image from the "Rhythm of Time" single

Image from the "Tyranny >For You<" album and posters

Monday, December 6, 2010

Record of the Week: Tragedy >For You< Embossed 12"

Here is the limited "embossed" edition of the 12" single for "Tragedy >For You<". It was released as a limited edition on RRE Records with the catalogue number RRE T 10.

The artwork for this edition is very unusual. It has dark green hues with a raised "embossed" 242 logo and the "Tyranny Symbols." It is actually quite difficult to see. The reverse features the swimmer image as seen on the regular versions released.

The artwork on the vinyl itself is also rather striking. It is a very vivid purple and features the "FIGHT" axe symbol.

Although issued in limited numbers, this usually can be found in the $25 - $50 range, depending on the condition of the embossed pictures sleeve.

Track List is as follows:

Side A:

  1. "Tragedy >For You<"   4'30"
SIde B:
  1. "Tragedy >For You<  Punish Your Machine Mix (long version)"   5'07"
  2. "Tragedy >For You<  Slo-Mo"  4'30"
Tragedy >For You< Embossed Edition


Tragedy >For You< Embossed Edition Reverse


Side A

Side B

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Poster of the Week: Catch The Men Tour 2005, Seattle, Washington

Here we have two posters from the 2005 Anniversary "Catch The Men Tour."
The first appears to be a "generic" version of the print in which a venue could write the time, place and date at the bottom.
It is on shiny, heavy card stock and measures 18 X 24 inches. It heavily promotes Metropolis Records, which possibly supplied these? The artwork is a very menacing 'electronic' gray skull against a red swirly background.

The second poster is somewhat smaller at  13 X 19 inches  and is on paper stock. It is an actual poster from the November 4, 2005 show at club Fenix Underground in Seattle, Washington. Apparently this club no longer exists.

Catch The Men Tour 2005 Poster


Catch The Men Tour 2005, Fenix Underground, Seattle, Washington


Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Compilation of the Week: Epic Audio Buyways 403/'91

Here we have another in the promotional "Epic Audio Buyways" series from 1991. A previous post in the series (November 10, 2010) gave us two tracks from the album "Tyranny >For You<". Here we have a promotional single for the second single release from that album: "Rhythm of Time"

The catalogue number for this promo cassette is EAT3006. This copy was obtained from ebay and so is a little rough for the wear!

Track Listing:

Side One:

  1. Joe Walsh:  "Ordinary Average Guy"
  2. Joe Walsh:  "Look At Us Now"
  3. Sweet Obsession:  "Elevator"
Side Two:
  1. This Beat Is Hot - Secchi: "I Say Yeah"
  2. Offshore:  "I Can't Take The Power"
  3. Front 242:  "Rhythm of Time"
Epic Audio Buyways 403/'91 promotional cassette 

Epic Audio Buyways 403/'91 cassette Side Two

Monday, November 29, 2010

T-Shirt of the Week: Official Warfare (Original)

This one goes waaay back. Here is my original "Official Warfare" T-Shirt. This shirt was purchased from one of the original Wax Trax! catalogues/flyers that were inserted with copies of Front 242 12" vinyl albums and singles. Long before the internet and Transmission 242, this was the only way you could get your hands on 242 Merchandise.

This was my "Official attire" for any and every 242 concert I could attend. I wore this shirt everywhere, and still wear it sometimes today! It has held up well, despite it being almost 24 years old!!! It has faded but the screening work has retained most of its shape.

This is an iconic 242 piece. The helicopter and Russian typography are quintessential 242. In fact, you can still purchase this T-Shirt today via Transmission 242:

Official Warfare T-Shirt circa 1986