Saturday, May 10, 2014

Let's Active - Every Dog Has it's Demos (1987)

Pretty straightforward here.  A collection of demos recorded by Mitch and Co. in anticipation of their 1988 parting shot, Every Dog Has It's Day.  As many fans would concur, it's not Let's Active's finest hour, but ironically, it's the album that introduced me to them.  I used to live in a small city in upstate New York, that just so happened to be home to an MCA records factory/distribution center.  L/A were on IRS, a subsidiary of MCA. Somehow, cassette cutouts/overruns of certain titles found their way into local five and dimes, thrift stores and the like.  I happened upon a sealed copy of Every Dog for half a buck at a McCrorys, but wasn't really big on the band until I investigated Afoot, Cypress, etc...

Among several songs here that would make the final cut for Every Dog, there's some surprisingly strong material that didn't including "You're a Comet," "I Wonder" and "All Roads Lead to Hell." While they don't consistently mesh with Let's Active janglier aesthetic of yore, they don't fail to impress either.  When it comes to Mitch, one rarely goes wrong.  Enjoy.

Reflection Studios, Apr 1987
01. 40 Years
02. Too Bad (#1)
03. Ten Layers Down
04. I Wonder
05. Sights Set On Heaven
06. You're a Comet
07. Shelter (by the Alarm?) snippit

Reflection or Drive-In Studios Apr-May '87
08. Too Bad
09. Night Train
10. 40 Years (#2)
11. Sweepstakes Winner
12. Sights Set On Heaven (#2)
13. Ten Layers Down
14. She Loves the T.V.
15. I Wonder (#2)
16. Terminate
17. You're a Comet
18. I Feel Funny

June '87
19. All Roads Lead to Hell (drum machine version)
20. untitled inst.
21. Too Bad (#3)
22. Night Train (#2)


Rob-in-Brevard said...

No kidding! Didn't even know these existed.

Will be pointing folks to these from my blog...


spavid said...

Cool beans. Thanks.

chris said...

Big Plans was my first Lets Active album; Every Dog was my first on CD, so it's also special.
Thanks for these, fantastic stuff.

eric said...

If I'm remembering correctly, I bought Cypress and the Afoot EP together on the same day, then instantly picked up Big Plans when it came out later on. I'll concede that Every Dog isn't the band's finest hour, but I still thought it was better than 99% of the albums released in 1988 that I heard, including (or perhaps I should say, especially) Green. Copies of the Collectors' Choice CD with two bonus tracks can often be found online for less than five bucks, so I bought one last year and have been giving it a lot of play since then. Just listened to the whole thing again two nights ago, which makes this post greatly welcome. Let's Active were one of a kind, and I'll bet that come December my Every Dog CD will also sound better than 99% of the 2014 releases I've heard. Thanks for passing these demos along, I'm having my first listen to them right now and couldn't be happier.

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WhatTS said...

Good stuff, thanks for this

Bob M said...

I think a few of these may actually be the album versions. I checked the liner notes in the CD and it lists Reflection as one of the recording locations. In fact I think that tracks 8,9,& 10 (Too Bad, Night Train, and 40)are the same takes as on the album, just slightly different mixes. They are even in the same order on the album too. Sweepstakes and I Feel Funny seem identical mixesto the album versions too. I think that I Wonder could be one of my new favorite Lets Active songs

honky said...

Please reup