Monday, October 20, 2008

Singles Going Single # 73 - Young Officers Movement (pre-Dreams So Real) 7" (198?)

Well here's a single that really is a complete and utter mystery. In fact I don't own a physical copy, nor have I seen so much as a thumbnail of it, let alone any information of the origin of the music itself. Dreams So Real were a jangle-rock band emanating from the hotbed of Athens, GA in the mid-80s,who released three albums. It was recently brought to my attention through a friend, that lead singer Barry Marler was formally frontman of a group called Young Officers Movement that predated DSR, most likely during the early-80s. A single (assumedly their only one) was released, but the best my friend could offer were two high bitrate MP3s of the songs that comprised it. There is no mention of the band's existence or background info on the recordings to be found anywhere online. Period.

Those acquainted with DSR will be taken aback by the starkness, and bleakness exuded by YOM, particularly in light of the comparatively warmer and empathetic tones that Marler would espouse in his next band. In fact, the two selections here, especially "You Can Walk," are icy enough to encourage any listener within earshot to make a mad dash for a thermal blanket. Starting off with a monologue of a gentleman (my guess from a TV documentary or Zoloft commercial) weighing the options of driving a train to a gas chamber, or to merely be a passenger on said train. With it's stabbing guitar riffs and Marler's lyrics entailing such dark passages as:

Another morning to sleep late
Another afternoon to kill
Another week of insecurity
Another chunk out of their lives.

It wouldn't be inaccurate to deem that REM were to Dreams so Real, what Killing Joke were to Young Officers Movement. The flipside, "It's Alright" is equally embellished with the "dark wave" post-punk tendencies Marler and Co. were wont to wallow in here. Intriguing stuff. If anyone perusing this can offer any pertinent info on YOM, don't be a stranger. BTW, I'm uncertain which songs are the "A" and "B-sides."

Posted on January 26, 2009: Thanks to LC for supplying the sleeve art.


Jamie Vanocci said...

This single does exist! I have a copy. It was recorded in Clemson, SC in 1982, produced by Barry Marler and Chris Taylor. It became the final Coquina label release. It had Tony Young on drums and Barry tracked the guitar, bass and vocals. I had seen them play at Clemson with Chris Taylor on Bass.

Unknown said...

I have a copy in my attic. Maybe I could digitize it and load it up to Youtube without unleashing a shitstorm of legal objections.