Wednesday, 19 October 2011

The "Blow Out" Mixtape from 1987

This is one of the oldest mixtapes I still possess. 1987. It was done for the stoners that lived in the Tweedy Road student houses in Bromley. We had many many crazy and wonderful times there. This tape was a popular play for a while. This is side 2. Side 1 has dated more to be honest. In those days I had no decks of my own, but I did have two cassette decks and a very simple 4 into 2 line mixer. So I mixed using that with a Wem Copycat echo plumbed in. At the time, even when I DJ'd live I would overdub recordings of adverts, news broadcasts and kids TV from cassettes I had recorded (wem fans click here).

At the Tweedy Road house we were very passionate about environmental politics and putting the world to rights. Ahem.. Lots of daft stoned ideas were hatched (like "Freak-Doobry Land" at Glastonbury, which I still have a poster for) and some better ones too (the beginnings of the South East London Permaculture group), but mainly we just enjoyed getting very, very wrecked together and this is an example of the soundtrack.

The TV clips talk about terrorist attacks, stocks and shares and Russian girls having cold showers, there is some Dangermouse too, Bob Geldof.. and Keith Chegwin.

There are some great tracks here: Sonic Youth's album "Sister" had just come out, The Fall were on top of their game again (what a brilliant track! "Australians in Europe think 'why did my Great Grandad ever leave?' He was consigned to a boat for using a huge great cleeee-vvv-ahhhhh" M.E.S, you genius!), and we were just about to be consumed by acid house.. (you can hear it in the Cabaret Voltaire track).

The David Byrne track comes from his album of the musical score for "The Catherine Wheel" and features Brian Eno and Adrian Belew. My personal favourite re-discovery here, besides The Fall track.

For hillbilly fans the Tex Isley track comes from an album called "North Carolina Boys", recorded in 1972 by Janet Kerr. This is followed by a truly wondrous Mikey Dread track from the brilliant "World War III" album. I had a big pair of speakers in my student hole and this track would shake the walls on a regular basis. I love this kind of minimal dub "watch out now Rasta!". I miss Mikey Dread a great deal. "Style, Style". 

Obviously, the quality is not the best it could be, but to be honest I find it amazing how good it still sounds after nearly 25 years.

Oh, and the intro and outro is cobbled together from some recording I was doing at the time for my duo with Carl Smith (R.I.P.) called "Fruittrees".

Hope you like it..

Simon x


  1. Hi Simon,
    When I talk fondly of making a 'bit-tape' my urchins laugh at me. Now I have proof that I'm not so un-cool....Jane xxx

  2. Hi Jane,
    Welcome! Nice to hear from you. I am pleased to have given you some kind of back-up. Now you can put that tape together with confidence and hopefully your urchins will be inspired to create their own.

    Simon x