18 Sep 2006
Stephin Merritt's entertaining sequence of words with Lemony Snicket 
When elusive author Lemony Snicket teamed up with allusive musician Stephin Merritt, The Guardian listened in...*

In further Merritt / Snicket related nonsense, 'The Tragic Treasury: Songs from A Series of Unfortunate Events as Executed By The Gothic Archies' is released by NoneSuch on 9 October 2006.

* - Lemony Snicket is the nom de plume for Daniel Handler, who played accordion on and conducted the interview in the liner notes of The Magnetic Fields' '69 Love Songs' 3xCD boxset. He started writing the Lemony Snicket books around the same time. When they eventually became audio books, they included soundtracks by Merritt under his Gothic Archies pseudonym and it is these soundtracks that are being compiled on the upcoming Nonesuch album.

Thanks to Mike.

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A Certain Ratio

"Manchester, 1978. In the beginning there were four: Jez Kerr (bass), Martin Moscrop (guitar/trumpet), Peter Terrel (guitar/effects) and Simon Topping (vocals/trumpet). Four thin boys with a name borrowed from a Brian Eno record, the intense, drummerless quartet initially drew influence from Wire, Eno, the Velvets and Kraftwerk, and gained a manager in Anthony Wilson of Factory Records.

"May 1979 saw the release of their first ACR single, the dark All Night Party, although the sound and musicianship of the band would be transformed by the arrival of funky drummer Donald Johnson (DoJo) in August. Over the next few months the band gigged widely, often with Joy Division as part of Factory packages, and recorded demos with producer Martin Hannett as well as a Peel session. Their support slot with Talking Heads on their UK tour in December 1979 set David Byrne on a new course, and provided the compelling live half of their chic cassette package The Graveyard and the Ballroom. Post-punk, ACR now reflected the influence of Funkadelic, George Clinton, Bootsy Collins, The Bar Kays and James Brown."

- intro to ACR Biography by James Nice (LTM)

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