Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Odolites - Chimes 7" & Persistence of Memory ep (1986, Musicland/Rampant)

I was informed about this arcane Australian quartet, not through Allmusic, college radio, or even a friends recommendation, but would you believe Ebay? I spotted The Odolites Persistence of Memory ep on everyones favorite auction site late last year, and was enthralled by the expansive roadway vista that monopolized the sleeve. Turns out, it sold for over $50 from what I recall, but I wasn't the lucky winner.
In my quest for any inkling of info I could glean about the four folks in question, I was privileged to stumble upon Side Room Singles blog, who were hosting an Odolites song, "Chimes" as part of a March 2007 podcast, which you can obtain a link to here. "Chimes" hit all the right chimes indeed, sublimely evoking such American contemporaries as Translator, Rain Parade, and perhaps to a lesser extent, The Dream Syndicate and Feelies. To make a long story short, I lucked out and soon after tracked down the Odolites "Chimes" 7" and the Persistence of Memory 12" ep, at a relatively reasonable cost.

As with so many of my posts, my background info on the band is more or less limited to what I've disclosed above, so if anyone wants to "chime" in with more info, don't be a stranger. The copiously aforementioned track is the choicest nugget here, but the remaining songs in The Odolites scant oeuvre are nearly as impressive, and a real find for anyone craving more of that resplendent, Paisley Underground vibe.

Persistence of Memory ep
01. Too Much to Dream
02. It Shouldn't Have to Be Like This
03. The Locks Have Changed
04. The First Summer Holiday
05. When Will the Sun Shine Again

"Chimes" 7"
A. Chimes
B1. As Fresh as Monday


L said...

Oh, great records. I liked them from the first chords of Chimes. Thanks for your persistence. Meant to mention in my last post - your notes on the music are exceptional. Not a big power-pop fan, but still appreciate good writing and insights. Thanks again for this.

Dunnyman said...

In answer to your question about more information...The Odolites were a 4 piece guitar band who formed in the mid 80's in the North of Tasmania (Australia). At the time, groups in Tasmania playing original music were few and far between, especially those who championed bright, guitar pop. The Odolites wrote and recorded around 10 tunes, 5 of which became the EP, Persistence of Memory
(Rampant Records). The band relocated to Melbourne, and became part of a vibrant, ever growing independent scene. They received rave reviews for their Persistence of Memory EP, and the follow up single, Chimes. A video clip for this song exists. They released another single, Kathleen's Tantrum followed by a full-length album, Face Down in the Violets (Rampant Records). They disbanded in 1988. Members joined 3 other bands of note - Tender Engines, The Somerfields and The Fish John West Reject.

bglobe313 said...

Holy Tasmania! Thanks for linking back to the Odolites in your Zimmermen post. I think I downloaded it before, but somehow missed out on how great it is.

I hear REM and The Feelies, but they go beyond just being imitators. Something haunting. Maybe it's just me today, but I love it NOW.

Ace K.

Timbo said...

I came across your blog looking for something else entirely, but talk about coincidences ... I recall the Odolites when they had just moved to Melbourne from Tasmania and this EP was going to be the beginning of their big break. Aussie indie music was pretty vibrant back then (mid-80s) and quite a few bands from that era went on to big things. Unfortunately, not these guys.

But I went to school in northern Tasmania with one of the Odolites - Andrew Lethborg. In fact, I'm probably one of the only people on the planet who still owns a casette tape of three tracks by his first band Fear of Dance, recorded when he and the rest of that band were about 17 or 18 years old. That was 1983 ...

whiskyhillbilly said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
whiskyhillbilly said...

Good band. Chimes seems to be a paean to the rickenbacker guitar, with the line "let that rickenbacker ring".

Dea Noa said...


Spavid, can you maybe Please reupload:
Persistence of Memory EP¿?

spavid said...

The links have been updated.

Dea Noa said...

Thank You so much dear spavid.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

chris rees said...

Hello, great to come across this. The band members all hailed from in and around Burnie, and that's the town in the distance in the cover photo. I grew up in Burnie too, and knew The Odolites as successor to a great little band called Noddy's Revenge - I've got a tape of theirs that gets a run now and again. The singer and at least 1 other Noddy formed The Odolites, as I recall. Saw them at the Uni Bar in Hobart around 1987, and saw The Fish John West Reject a few times too.

I don't recall ever listening to Persistence of Memory but I must have, because I remember taking it into a copy shop and asking them to colour-photocopy the cover, and they refused. I had never seen Burnie look so cool - it was a pretty daggy town.

spavid said...

Thanks for commenting Chris. Would love to hear Noddy's Revenge if possible. Cheers.