Label: In-Poly-Sons - IPS 0389 • Format: Vinyl LP, Album, Compilation • Country: France • Genre: Rock •
Some time after I had listed my new wave classicsI was trying to pinpoint those that have passed through the net of the CD rereleases. But it's practically impossible for the ordinary Joe to get the first Passions album, the one album by Cowboys International, The Sound's "Jeopardy" or the first self-titled Flying Lizards album.
One of the most blatant omissions in this list was Family Fodder's "Greatest hits", an ironically titled compilation by this British band, released in by Belgian label Crammed.
Full of a-propos, Dominique had simply advised me to get in touch with Alig and offer him Not such a bad idea, but Cant Buy Me Love - The Beatles - A Collection Of Beatles Oldies guess I did not feel adventurous enough financially to embark on this enterprise.
At the time, I simply went to check Crammed's reissue program on their web site and suggested them to think about reissuing the Honeymoon Killers albums with extra tracks and the one by Family Fodder. Although I knew they probably only ever had a limited license by the original British label, Fresh, to release the compilation in the first place.
Well, the good news is that, at the end of last year, US micro-label Dark Beloved Cloud picked up the challenge and released a CD, "Savoir faire : the best of Family Fodder", in connection with Jungle Records ,the British label which obviously took up the Fresh catalogue when the label went down in the 80's.
But there were not only covers on this record! There were a good few duff tracks, including one by UK Decay, and the best original, by far, was Is There La MerdRe After The Death ? - Various - Ubu Et La Merdre faire" by Family Fodder, a 2'30 pop new-wave jewel which should by right be included in every best singles list of the period, and which concentrates most of the qualities of the band : the sound is inventive but also very accessible, with great innovators like This Heat!
It is probably because of this common feature that it has been said that Family Fodder has more or less inspired Stereolab, although this doesn't seem completely incongruous, especially if one thinks of the pop song side to Stereolab's music. In any case, "Savoir faire" was never the hit it should have been, not even its second release by then young Belgian label Crammed Records.
It is actually thanks to Crammed that, in France inwe got the chance to get acquainted with most of the Family Fodder singles, as they released the cleverly titled "Greatest hits" compilation, which included most of the singles released by fresh : the first one, "Playing golf with my flesh crawling ", the "Debbie Harry" tribute, other singles tracks "Film music", "Warm"a few unreleased tracks and three good extracts from the band's first album,"Monkey banana kitchen".
This album, I also borrowed from Dorian Feller at the time, but I was not convinced by it. Of course it was a mistake : I've just bought this record which is now almost twenty years old and which has aged very well, thanks especially to its style of new wave with a deep reggae bass which at the time made the artistic fortune of PIL and a few others. On the contrary, I had been impressed enough by "Playing golf" - a delirious song musically and lyrically : the chorus goes something like "I want Is There La MerdRe After The Death ?
- Various - Ubu Et La Merdre be dead and with you watch the television every Monday"! I directed it, I don't dare to say that I acted you can hear some sort of snoring at the beginning of the song so I filmed myself pretending to sleep I think I never finished this clip, and anyway, the cassette must have been disposed of when they switched to colour video. I didn't keep a copy of it, but it can't be a great loss for he history of music videos! So, with maybe the exception of "Kisses", it is the covers that I prefer on this record.
As for "Monkey banana kitchen", I was not enthused by "Schizophrenia party", released in after Dominique Levillain left the band, replaced by Lynn Alice, even though now I like "Silence" a lot and "Better lies" a little. Later, inthere was the "The big dig" single, which I only got to know much later.
It is a more or less reggaefied version of an Erik Satie composition the band had already tackled Schubert beforehandwith an excellent B-side, "Plant life". Then it seems that Fresh Records stopped, and Family Fodder found itself on Jungle Records with a single "Coral",and even a double album, "All styles", ina record on which every song is meant to represent a particular musical style progressive, folk, classic, Unfortunately, I have few memories of this performance by Alig's new band, but I remember quite clearly that I had loved the music played on the PA before the band went on : that's how I discovered "Swordfishtrombones" by Tom Waits!
And, to prove that not all godd Family Fodder can fit on a single CD, here's below what could make What You Need - Entombed - Same Difference volume 2 of the Family Fodder best-of Pol Dodu, PS : Following the release of the best-of on Dark Beloved CloudAlig and Dominique got together and recorded a brand new album, "Water shed", released instill on Dark Beloved Cloud I haven't had the opportunity to listen to it yet PS : Alig Fodder has his own page on Myspace.
On Blogonzeureux! I'm asking myself questions about Ian Hill : in the Sound Projector interview inAlig explains how he made the artwork for "Monkey banana kitchen", but Ian Hill is credited for it in the liner notes So I ran to fetch my copy of "Tings an' times", which contains "Di good life", the best song on the record, dominated by a superb accordian part.
The Vail And The Crown - Various - Jewels Of Cajun Music / Down Home Music From South Louisiana sure enough, there is a member of Family Fodder on this One (Your Name) (Vocal Mix) - Swedish House Mafia - One, but it is Ian Hill!
Sp I get to wonder whether or not Alig and Ian Hill are the same person
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