Tuesday, June 5, 2012

MX80 Sound - crowd control (1981)

Even though Out Of The Tunnel gets all the credit and recognition when it comes to the MX-80 Sound, actually Crowd Control is the better album.

The tormented riffs and tight rhythm of "Face Of The Earth" betray the influence of Television, but the fierce acid lead-guitar is all theirs. "Crowd Control" is a furious rockabilly instrumental, alternating between order and chaos. The zombie-esque monologue "Why Are We Here" is once again backed by some formidable post-acid grooves.

This early form of existential noise-rock, that straddles the line between structure and improvisation, predates Mission Of Burma, Sonic Youth, Fugazi et al.

The extraordinary "Obsessive Devotion" is underlined by a moody melody that is seconded by some amazing leads, chanting vocals and a discordant middle-section. Another masterpiece, "More Than Good" evokes the timeless spirit of garage-punk, and adds the usual post-acid leads, anthemic backing vox, and a large dose of alienation. The industrial heavy-rock, relentless riffing, wild solos, and inventive use of vocals in "Night Rider" create a suffocating atmosphere. Ditto for the bouncing "City Of Fools".

The elaborate, dramatic structure of the progressive "Theme From Sisters" is clearly an influence on Mission Of Burma's Vs.Continuing along this path, "Pharoah's Sneakers" is an engaging mixture of avant-garage, feral solos and saxophone, big-band swing simulations, and brittle tempo changes. Finally, the album ends with the frigid lounge "Promise of Love", which is soon countered by progressive deviations, and ceases with a delicate whisper of piano, bass and drums.

An album in desperate need of re-evaluation. Get it here (
vinyl rip, includes photographs of the sleeve, inner sleeve, and the vinyl).


Anonymous said...

many thanks for this

Anonymous said...

thanks for this classic

Anonymous said...


Θειος said...

Fantastic album, thanks.

Jim Slip said...


Thanks, I added your blog to the links. Some nice stuff you've uploaded there. -)