Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Soft Boys- Underwater Moonlight...And How It Got There (1980) Expanded Edition (Bonus Disc) MP3 & FLAC -For sradams777-

"In the primitive jungle of love, it's funny what you're capable of."

The Soft Boys' debut, A Can of Bees, is the sound of a band joyously sneering in the face of both commercial and creative expectations. Wedding Power-Pop and neo-psychedelia to the aesthetic minimalism of the Post-Punk movement then in full-swing, The Soft Boys were simultaneously anachronistic and visionary, yet sublimely unconcerned with (or blissfully unaware of) the implications of either. While their debut consistently refracted their Jangle-Pop tendencies through the twin-prisms of a cheeky brand of experimentalism and a blunt Punk sensibility, their follow-up and criminally under-appreciated masterpiece, Underwater Moonlight, refines these to some degree and, in the process, clearly sketched the blueprint for the countless neo-psych bands that would spring up in the years to come. It has been famously said of The Velvet Underground's debut that only a thousand people initially bought the album and every one of them ended up starting a band; something similar could also be said of Underwater Moonlight without any fear of lapsing into exaggeration.  On the opening track, "I Wanna Destroy You," The Soft Boys' create a unique hybrid sound that can best be described as "jangle-punk"; contrasting Robyn Hitchcock's biting lyrics, such as "They feed your pride with boredom and they lead you on to war," with irresistible pop-song hooks and harmonized choruses, it's hard to imagine how profoundly unprecedented this song must have sounded in 1980. The next song, "Kingdom of Love," is a stunner; presaging the jagged Funk of Solid Gold-era Gang of Four, while also managing to integrate Nuggets-style Garage-Rock with a liberal dose of Syd Barrett added in for good measure, the song is easily one of Hitchcock's finest as a Soft Boy. Perhaps the most obvious influence on bands such as R.E.M. and The Three O'Clock is "Queen of Eyes," a marvelous piece of Byrds-inspired Jangle-Pop that is one of the best examples of neo-psychedelia I have ever come across. To say that Underwater Moonlight is one of the most influential albums of the Post-Punk era is both an understatement and an irony given The Soft Boys' decidedly un-Post-Punk tendency to overtly incorporate sixties-era influences into their sound. While at the time, this approach cost them any hope of commercial or critical success in response to their albums, it is hard to imagine the Athens and Paisley underground music scenes growing to prominence in the early eighties without the influence of The Soft Boys' groundbreaking work.

Underwater Moonlight 
(Matador ~ 2001/1980 ~ Remastered 2-CD Edition)

Disc I: Underwater Moonlight (2001 Remaster)

 1. I Wanna Destroy You  (2:53)
 2. Kingdom of Love  (4:11)
 3. Positive Vibrations  (3:11)
 4. I Got the Hots  (4:43)
 5. Insanely Jealous  (4:15)
 6. Tonight  (3:44)
 7. You'll Have to Go Sideways  (2:58)
 8. Old Pervert  (3:53)
 9. The Queen of Eyes  (2:01)
10. Underwater Moonlight  (4:18)
-Album Outtakes-
11. He's a Reptile  (4:28)
12. Vegetable Man  (2:59)
13. Strange  (3:00)
14. Only the Stones Remain  (2:51)
15. Where Are the Prawns?  (6:07)
16. Dreams  (4:38)
17. Black Snake Diamond Rock  (4:25)
18. There's Nobody Like You  (3:12)
19. Song #4  (4:36)

Disc II: ...And How It Got There

 1. Old Pervert- Section I  (1:39)
 2. Like a Real Smoothie  (3:44)
 3. Alien  (3:13)
 4. Bloat (Extract)  (1:01)
 5. Underwater Moonlight  (6:24)
 6. She Wears My Hair  (5:23)
 7. Wang Dang Pig  (3:56)
 8. Old Pervert- Section II  (1:31)
 9. Insanely Jealous  (5:03)
10. Leave Me Alone  (6:45)
11. Goodbye Maurice or Steve  (3:14)
12. Old Pervert- Section III  (0:37)
13. Cherries  (2:55)
14. Amputated  (4:22)
15. Over You  (4:00)
16. I Wanna Er... (Extract)  (0:43)
17. Old Pervert- Section IV  (1:24)



  1. Been waiting a long time for this to show up in lossless. Thanks very very much.

  2. This really makes me happy! Thank you so much!

  3. BOR3AS, your comment makes me happy. You're welcome!

  4. The Soft Boys were simultaneously anachronistic and visionary...Now if I could write or even think in that way I might be rich instead of being a minimum wage earner. But really you know I love this post! Thanks again.

  5. sradams777, I truly wish having a talent for writing translated into financial success; I had to sell my favorite guitar this month in order to pay the bills. Teaching is a tough gig in these days of massive budget cuts, but many have it worse, so I shouldn't complain. Thanks again for suggesting The Soft Boys- a fantastic request! Blur is coming soon :)

  6. Voix - I've been really enjoying a Can of Bees, so look forward to this one. Thanks for broadening my horizons!

  7. Matt, thank you. It's the primary reason I do this blog, so it's nice to receive comments like yours. I will be posting some solo Robyn Hitchcock (lead singer in The Soft Boys)in the near future

  8. Gracias! Had this from eMusic, but I really appreciate the upgrade to lossless. Thanks again!


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