Sunday, January 30, 2011

Record of the Week: Two In One (New Dance) CD Single

Over the past few months, the "Record of the Week" as been a hodge-podge of whatever record or CD took my fancy. Looking at the 242 Catalogue, it can be quite impressive!
Therefore, to present it in a reasonable and more logical manner, for the next few weeks (months?) I am going to attempt to present them in chronological and format order.
First we will begin with the Front 242 CD catalogue.

Up first are the CD singles for "Two In One". This originally appeared on vinyl in original and updated formats, and I have already posted them previously.
The CD single collects the first two Front 242 7" singles, U-Men/Ethics & Principles/Body To Body.
Originally released on the "New Dance" Label, it is presented here that way again, although it is manufactured and distributed by Play It Again Sam.

The New Dance single comes in two formats.
First is the "Jewel Case" release with the standard 5" CD single. The artwork updates the pictures sleeve from the U-Men/Ethics 7" vinyl. Here is it a bit larger than the cardboard sleeve artwork. The reverse is somewhat plain with only the track listing and label information, although it does state "(originally released on New Dance in october 81/april 82)"
The insert actually folds out, but is blank on the inside.

The cardboard sleeve houses the 3" CD single. It also comes with a plastic "CD Single Adapter". The artwork and design are otherwise identical.

Both CD singles list the catalogue number as "ND 009 CD"

Today, both singles are fairly common and can be had on the standard markets for $5-10 each.

Track Listing:

  1. U-Men (3:15)
  2. Ethics (2:27)
  3. Principles (4:40)
  4. Body To Body (4:10)
Two In One 5 inch CD Single Slimline Jewel Case front

Two In One 5 inch CD Single Slimline Jewel Case back

Two In One 5 inch CD Single

Two In One 3 inch CD Single Cardboard Sleeve front

Two In One 3 inch CD Single Cardboard Sleeve back (shrink wrapped)

Two In One 3 inch CD Single with CD Single Adapter

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Poster of the Week: ReBoot 98 Minneapolis, MN

Here we have an interesting poster from the Re:Boot '98 Tour. This was a "comeback" tour of sorts as Front 242 had returned with its newly updated ("Re:Booted") sound and an extensive tour across the United States followed.

Here we have a poster from the August 21, 1998 show at "The Quest" in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Apparently this club was originally started by Prince. Unfortunately it now appears to be closed, or has changed names over the last decade. Here is an article about its passing:

This black & white poster measures 11 by 17 inches and is printed on regular paper stock. I refer to this and other posters like it as "242 Mash-up." Here we see design elements from several different Front 242 eras, thrown together. Personally I am not a big fan of mixing these elements.
This poster is somewhat of a departure in that most of the Re:Boot Tour posters featured  the beautiful artwork from the CD release. Also the opening act was "And One"...whereas Project Pitchfork opened for much of the tour.

Re:Boot '98 Poster, "The Quest' Minneapolis, Minnesota



Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Compilation of the Week: This Is Electronic Body Music

If one could pick only three words to describe Front 242, "Electronic Body Music" would suffice. Although 242 is all that and more, they are the recognized "godfathers" of EBM. This collection is likely one, if not THE, definitive Electronic Body Music collection. If nothing else, it is a primer on old-school EBM circa 1988 and the best example of a single record to define EBM.

Released as a joint effort of sorts by PIAS, RRE, Antler, and Netwerk labels, it was available on CD and Vinyl formats. The CD has the catalogue number EBM 1-CD and the single 12" vinyl is simply listed as EBM 1. There is apparently also a vinyl version released on "Ediesta Records" which is a sub-label of RRE.

The artwork depicts the now iconic "police state" or "stormtrooper" image, which is often duplicated on other EBM artwork, and can be seen on the 242 Bootleg 7" vinyl "Television Programm 1st" in black & white form. This artwork is repeated on the CD and Vinyl release so I will only depict the actual vinyl picture sleeve to avoid redundancy.

The picture sleeve of the CD features the back catalogue of all the artists featured on the release.

Track Listing:
Side One:

  1. Front 242:  "Body To Body" (The 1988 Mix)
  2. The Neon Judgement:  "Chinese Black"
  3. Click Click:  "Sweet Stuff"
  4. a; Grumh... : "Ha People"
  5. Parade Ground:  "Strange World"
  6. The Cassandra Complex:  "One Millionth Happy Customer"
Side Two:
  1. A Split Second:  "On Command"
  2. Chris And Cosey:  "Exotika"
  3. Borghesia:  "No Hope, No Fear"
  4. The Weathermen:  "Poison"
  5. Skinny Puppy: "Assimilate"
I love this CD! This was my first introduction to many of the other great artists which the Chicago label Wax Trax! would eventually release state-side, as they had Front 242.
Although I would go on to particularly enjoy the likes of A Split Second, a: Grumh...: and Skinny Puppy, none could hold a candle to Front 242...

This CD and Vinyl are quite common today, although back in the day, it was a hard import to come by. Expect to pay $5-$10 at most.

This Is Electronic Body Music picture sleeve front. Note this is also the front of the 12" Vinyl

Picture sleeve reverse

Jewel Case Insert; Note this image is also the back of the 12" vinyl

Inside picture sleeve

This Is Electronic Body Music CD

Vinyl Side One

Vinyl Side Two

Sunday, January 23, 2011

T-Shirt of the Week: Pulse

Front 242 came back on the scene in a big way in 2003 with the release of new material with the album "Pulse" and the EP "Still & Raw"

Here we have a T-Shirt featuring a new version of the 242 Logo, as featured on the album and ep artwork, as well as print material for this release. This logo and the dramatic reds were also played to full effect on the Front 242 website as well.

The front of this shirt features a new 242 logo in a simple, but elegant-in-a-restrained-way, in the form of lines or dashes.
The reverse features a "red swirl" with the names of the tracks from the Pulse album.

This shirt at one time was available from Transmission 242. I still wear it quiet is just another wonderful 242 shirt!

(Apologies for the poor scans here, my lighting source was an epic fail!)

"Pulse" T-Shirt Front


"Pulse" T-Shirt Back


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Bootleg of the Week: Television Programm 1st

Here is one of those ultimate Front 242 rarities that generally should belong in any good 242 collection!

"Television Programm - 1st" is a 7" vinyl bootleg 45 rpm single released on "Galapagos Island Records".
For a bootleg, the quality is quite good for the time.
It comes in a paper sleeve with a black and white image and Front 242 logo. This image is seen on the legitimate compilation release "This is Electronic Body Music" (which will be featured later this week!). The back sleeve image is the same, only omitting the Front 242 logo.

The title is listed on the back. It also states: "March 27, 1986  Live in Germany, Hahn Studios. We Thank all People for this Material."

The disc lists the label as "Top De Luxe" and has the catalogue number of 150 304.
Side 1 is listed as "Television Programm" and the cryptic "RBS Base Prod." and "27.03.86 West Germany"
Side 2 is listed as "First" and repeats the remainder.

This bootleg contains two live Front 242 recordings.
Track List:

  1. Side 1: Special Forces (Demo Version September 1981)
  2. Side 2: Commando Mix (Live Germany, March 27 1986)
Expect to pay upwards of $100 for this rarity, if and when you ever see one come up for sale!

Front Sleeve

Back Sleeve

Side 1

Side 2

Monday, January 17, 2011

Memorabilia of the Week: 12 Days of Tyranny For You

We complete our "12 Days of Tyranny For You" with the Beginning and End Papers in this series. The folio begins with a then-current discography and ends with a beautiful and haunting gothic cathedral-like setting. Both items are printed on a parchment, almost velum-like paper.

If I am not mistaken, this gothic structure was the backdrop for publicity press photos of the group. (See July 21 Post "Epic Press Kit")

Epic Press Kit Photo

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Memorabilia of the Week: 12 Days of Tyranny For You

The final images in this beautiful series complete the "242 Swimmers" with a trio of blue and green-hued stills. Here we depart from the reds and yet these final three images are all the more menacing and threatening. If I recall correctly, I believe Patrick once stated that some of these images were made in freezing-cold water for the dramatic effect. These images would fit that bill!




Thursday, January 13, 2011

Memorabilia of the Week: 12 Days of Tyranny For You

I call this set of stills "242 Swimmers Part 2". Here we have additional photos of Patrick submersed. I often also call these particular stills "Sea Dog" as one can see the branding of the goggles (in reverse)

I find it amazing how Front 242 could take a mundane thing such as swimming and create a visual masterpiece!



Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Memorabilia of the Week: 12 Days of Tyranny For You

I refer to these stills as "242 Swimmers". On close inspection, it appears to be Patrick who is being submersed. The brilliant reds take on a very dramatic and cinematic effect, and it creates much tension. One almost feels the need to hold the breath or gasp for air!
Images from this "red" series can also be seen on the artwork for Rhythm of Time.



Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Memorabilia of the Week: 12 Days of Tyranny For You

Here we have a transition of sorts. The bottom still continues the series of "242 in motion". It gives a marvelous time-delayed effect.
The top still re-presents the Tyranny swimmer. The blue hues here contrast nicely with the familiar red-hued swimming shots seen later in the series and prominently on the Rhythm of Time artwork.



Monday, January 10, 2011

Memorabilia of the Week: 12 Days of Tyranny For You

Here a departure of sorts, as the next still in the series represents a nice large image of the members during a Tyranny Tour show. There is of course no "Tyranny symbol" here.
The Tyranny Tour continued the 242 trademark of the dark, aviator-glasses, military-style garb, and "industrial-strength EBM." We would see Front 242 depart from this look per se with UP EVIL and OFF...


Sunday, January 9, 2011

Memorabilia of the Week: 12 Days of Tyranny For You

As we continue to see Front 242 in motion, beneath the "Tyranny Symbol" for SPEED we have the fluid continuation of the previous still. Taken together with the images from the Mixed By Fear release, they make a remarkable and cohesive set. I would love to have seen a video of this photo session, as it would have made a perfect video for Gripped/Mixed By Fear...


Friday, January 7, 2011

Memorabilia of the Week: 12 Days of Tyranny For You

"242 in Motion". Here we have a beautiful effect with Front 242 in motion and a striking image of Patrick as he looks dead-on at the camera. Variations of this and the next image can be found on the Mixed By Fear release to great effect. This is also not lost as this image is found beneath the "Tyranny Symbol" SIGHT.


Thursday, January 6, 2011

Memorabilia of the Week: 12 Days of Tyranny For You

The use of water or swimming is often a common theme in the artwork and imagery of Front 242. We first see the swimmer in Never Stop! and it is taken much further with Tyranny >For You< and culminates in Mixed By Fear. Here the water/swimmer motif is very menacing and even mimics a rainstorm. This element is composed beneath the "Tyranny" symbol for TIME.


Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Memorabilia of the Week: 12 Days of Tyranny For You

Here we have a very menacing shot with Patrick and Richard staring straight at the viewer.
This scene is pictured below the aptly chosen "Tyranny" axe symbol for "FIGHT!"