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Check out what was featured on this week’s Crackle & Pop courtesy of Big Rock Brewery below.
Gary Numan and The Tubeway Army – “Down in the Park”
We’re at the very last bit of section N in the vinyl library and the last song from this letter comes from Gary Numan and The Tubeway Army. Their second album was 1979’s Replicas, the album that gave us the single “Are ‘Friends’ Electric?” But I’m going to play the first single from that record, a song that was never very successful on its own but has nevertheless been covered by the Foo Fighters, Marilyn Manson and a few others. No one knew it at the time, but this track ended up becoming rather influential when it came to the industrial music scene. It’s Gary Numan and “Down in the Park.”
Phil Oakey and Giorgio Moroder – “Together in Electric Dreams”
We now begin section O in this alphabetical tour through my vinyl record collection. If you’re a fan of the movie Her with Joaquin Phoenix — the guy who falls in love with his phone — you should go back and find a 1984 movie called Electric Dreams. It’s about a love triangle between a nerd, a woman and his home computer named Edgar. Edgar eventually composes a song for the woman before he (it?) commits suicide by electrocuting himself. There was a hit single from the soundtrack stemming from a collaboration between Phil Oakey of The Human League and producer Giorgio Morodor. It’s called “Together in Electric Dreams.”
Patrick O’Hearn – “Chattahoochee Field Day”
For our second selection from section O of the vinyl library, I have this from composer Patrick O’Hearn. He’s nowhere near what you’d consider to be any kind of rock or alt-rock performer. In fact, he’s more of a New Age sort of guy. But in 1990, a bunch of different producers got together and remixed some of his compositions in the style of the day—which is to say in sort of a sample-heavy techno fashion. The record—which was called Mix-Up—was released without O’Hearn knowing anything about it. He wasn’t happy and the album is long out of print. However, I have a copy. Let’s have a listen to a track that did get some alt-rock radio airplay back then. It’s Patrick O’Hearn and the unauthorized remix of “Chattahoochee Field Day.”
Oingo Boingo – “Stay”
Continuing with section O today, we have Oingo Boingo—or, as they were originally known, The Mystic Knights of the Oingo Boingo, a group that made their big debut as a joke on the old Gong Show in 1976. But then they got serious—sort of—and turn into something of a California New Wave hit with songs like “Dead Man’s Party” and “Weird Science.” Later, leader Danny Elfman went on to become a super-famous composer for movies and TV. He’s the guy that wrote the theme for The Simpsons. But back in 1985, he was writing songs like this. This is Oingo Boingo from the album called Dead Man’s Party and “Stay.”
Mike Oldfield – “Shadow on the Wall”
Another record from section O today. Mike Oldfield will forever be remembered for his super-ambitious and ultra-epic Tubular Bells album from 1973, but there was a period in the early 80s when he had a run of good luck with shorter songs on album rock radio. That peaked in 1983 with an album called Crisis which yielded a couple of radio singles. This was one of them, featuring English singer Roger Chapman, ex of a British prog band called Family from the late 60s and early 70s. It’s called “Shadow on the Wall.”