Saturday, October 25, 2014

The Man Boys - Soul Rebels Capturing the Beat 7" (1982)

I'm not very familiar with the history of ska and reggae in Tennessee but I'm willing to bet this is one of the first.
The Man Boys were three brothers who captured the 2 Tone sound perfectly. When you first listen to this, try to ignore the juvenile lyrics which, really, aren't that bad, and just listen to the incredible songwriting and appreciate how well these guys captured the ska sound - but went totally unnoticed.

I don't know how many copies of this record were pressed but I'm guessing between 300 to 500, and there is no song on here called "Soul Rebels Capturing the Beat" - that's just the name of the record, but it shows their influence.
I don't know whatever happened to them or whether or not they had any other releases, but this is one of those great records that nobody knows about.

A - Waiting in the Wings
B - You're a Stamp


Monday, October 13, 2014

The Zero Heroes

The Zero Heroes were a Swiss mod-ska band from Geneva, Switzerland that released a couple of albums and a couple of singles. The two albums included all of their songs with the exception of the b-side from the No Illusions single. All of their releases were on a French label and, so, there is a lot of conjecture that they are a French band but they are, in fact, Swiss.

The band formed out of the ashes of two Swiss punk bands The Bastards and Jack & the Rippers.
Jack & the Rippers experimented with the ska/reggae sound with the song "Endless Peace" but the Zero Heroes were a new direction for both bands. They played very well written power-pop (mod)-ska songs. (with less ska on the second album.)

Crash Boom Bang (1982)
1 Crash Boom Bang
2 Movie Star
3 Straighten Up Your Image
4 Trip Across the Ocean
5 Rebel
6 Little Girl Lost
7 Zero Hero Man
8 Walk, Don't Run
9 Deep in the Jungle
10 Running Dog
11 No Illusion
12 Music Fashion Magic

"Walk, Don't Run"


Radio Free Europe (1983)
 1 Freedom Fighters
2 Playboy Prince
3 Am I Gonna Leave
4 Moonlight
5 Cadillac, Pontiac, Zodiac
6 Love Power
7 Radio Free Europe
8 Tears of Joy
9 No Candy Store
10 Relationships
11 They Lost it All

"Playboy Prince"


Sunday, October 12, 2014

Famous 4 - Hume Tunes 1. 12" (1984)

Rare British ska.

A1 - Sand Dance
A2 - I Want That Girl
A3 - I Want That Girl (Dub)
B1 - Not Just Any Picture
B2 - Never the Policeman

"I Want that Girl"


The Talks - Commoners, Peers, Drunks, and Theives (2014) preview

from their press release:

"The last three years have seen The Talks working relentlessly to bring us a smorgasbord of bouncy, big hitting singles with 'Can Stand The Rain' featuring Neville Staple and 'Friday Night' creating a huge buzz online, replicated by the response of the crowd when the band have performed live.  With main stage performances at globally renowned festivals such as ‘This Is Ska’ (DE), ‘Mighty Sounds’ (CZ) and the UK’s ‘Rebellion’, tweets of appraisal and support from new wave big hitters ‘Less Than Jake’, glowing reviews and cover features from Big Cheese and Vive Le Rock Magazines - not to mention appearing in programmes on various UK TV networks - the bands reputation has surged from strength to strength.

2014’s recent singles 'Don't Look Behind You' and 'Radio' have paved the way for The Talks' long highly anticipated new album 'Commoners, Peers, Drunks and Thieves', and these cheeky Yorkshire chaps are gaining widespread attention on an international level. The album offers an insight into the versatility of the band’s sound.  ‘Light Up’ is an up tempo and anti-love song whereas ‘Ceasefire’ featuring Itch from The King Blues is a hard-edged call to arms, a fast paced and dazzling assault on the senses. 

Following another busy summer of festivals across Europe, the band will be taking their new album on the road with an extensive European tour planned for October and November.

Of the album, lead singer Pat Pretorius says "It’s really personal.  Our last album 'Live Now, Pay Later’ felt more like a catalogue of songs, but this time it feels like a real album, a journey. We agonised over this, and we'd like to think it'll bring our audience closer to us, help get the idea and vibe across more clearly."

Track Listing

1. Don't Look Behind You
2. Radio
3. Tear Us Apart
4. Fire
5. Ceasefire (Ft iTch)
6. Light Up
7. All In A Day
8. Hacks
9. Tune In
10. Sam
11. Alright With Me

Youtube link

Youtube link

This album will be released in the U.K. and the rest of the world on 24/11/2014 and in the U.S. on 11/24/2014.

The Blue Beat Stompers - Sit Tight and Listen Keenly... (1998)

Traditional ska band from California.
Their only official release (they did have a demo cassette with 5 songs that are not on this album) on the excellent Steady Beat Recordings.

1 I Need Your Lovin'
2 Put You Down
3 I Will Get Along Without You
4 South City
5 Can't Find The Words
6 I Won't Cry For You
7 Leavin' Town
8 The Series
9 Someday You'll See
10 Got Me Spinnin'
11 I Don't Know
12 Excuses, Excuses

"I Need Your Lovin'"


This album is available at CD baby with 4 previously unreleased tracks HERE.

Gruff - Gruff 7" (1993)

Hardcore band from Maryland that occasionally played some ska.

A1 - Trials and Tribulations
A2 - Da Grind
B1 - Judgement Day
B2 - Let Downs

"Let Downs"


Sunday, October 5, 2014

The Kingpins - Lootin' Shootin' and Wailin' 7" (1998)

A - Lootin' Shootin' and Wailin' (live)
B - Do the Ska (live)