Saturday, September 22, 2007

Swell Maps - Whatever Happens Next...2xLP (1981)

I had the good fortune of meeting Nikki Sudden last spring before he died in New York City just two weeks later on March 26, 2006. When we began talking about his previous band, seminal art-punks, The Swell Maps I inquired about the bands back catalogue. The Swell Maps two proper albums, A Trip to Marineville and Jane From Occupied Europe had recently been reissued on Secretly Canadian Records, but I was inclined to ask him about a very scarce 2-LP set of home demos, Whatever Happens Next, released in the UK on vinyl only in 1981. He replied that it might be reissued on CD, but failed to elaborate.

All mundanities aside, when Mute Records initially reissued the two aforementioned albums and the outtakes/singles collection Train Out of It in 1989. Containing songs dating as far back to 1974, Whatever... was also slated to be ushered into the digital age, but the label opted not to release it. Quite frankly, who can blame them? Whatever... is rough, and I mean rough going. It's a rudimentary maelstrom of improvised thrashing, kitchen noises, and occasionally something approaching a punk rock song (or more accurately post-punk). What should be of most interest to Nikki Sudden/Swell Maps devotees are early versions of future album and single tracks like "Midget Submarines" "Read About Seymour," and one of the band's signature blasts, "Vertical Slum." 2006 saw the release of another Swell Maps collection of miscellaneous debris, Wastrels and Whippersnappers, that's even more treacherous than this.

01. Read About Seymour
02. Fashion Cult
03. Armadillo
04. (I Am) The Greatest Pluming!/Radio Ten
05. Here's The Cupboard (Thrash)
06. Terribly Insect
07. Midget Submarines
08. Whatever Happens Next...
09. Clearasil Record
10. Blam!!
11. Down With Tractors
12. Amphibious Landing Craft
13. Paul's Dead
14. Sheep Dip
15. Havoc All Ended
16. The Himalayas
17. You And The Night And The Music
18. The Stairs Are Like An Avalanche
19. Vertical Slum
20. Forest Fire
21. Midget Submarines (II)
22. Armadillo (II)
23. Bandits On Fire



Icky said...

Wow, great post!
Thanks for sharing this :)

chalkdork said...

Thanks so much for putting this up. Haven't heard this album in about fifteen years. I love Armadillo, even though it's a rotten mess.

Anonymous said...

I downloaded this and had problems extracting it. I use a bit of kit called 'Alpha Zip' to open files. I got the dreaded 'Bad Block!' message. I'm having another crack at it now.

Thanks for uploading it. As I've had SWELL MAPS tattooed on my left bicep for the last thirty years, I should really have it, anyway.


spavid said...

Anonymous said...

any chance you send a private link for this? or re-post a link? much appreciated. thanks