Wednesday, December 28, 2011

I-Rails - Valentino Says tape (1986)

This is the fourth and final leg in our tour of I-Rails cassette albums, with the last stop culminating with Valentino Says, which is actually their first release (ironic, but not when you consider I've been presenting them in reverse order).  I've already dedicated space to the three full lengths that followed-up Valentino Says (1987's Unfocused, '89s Nine Songs From Nowhere, and their 1990 parting shot Panharmonium).  Being that the case, if you've already absorbed Unfocused, you might recognize two songs which actually debuted in different incarnations on Valentino, specifically "There Goes Another" and "Mercury Don't Understand."

My original expectation was that as I went backwards with the I-Rails discography, I would encounter a rawer, more savage aesthetic that the band would eventually curtail and fine tune on each subsequent release.  If anything it was the opposite way around, with Valentino striking me as the most approachable of their four mini reel-to-reels.  In fact, the bulk of this one inadvertently fortels the mid-tempo power pop tack that the Gin Blossoms would corner the market with in the early nineties.  Song for song Valentino Says cuts the mustard, but the I-Rails would tilt in a grittier direction on their next three albums (and a 1988 7") to even more satisfying effect.  Unfortunately I have no artwork to offer for this one, although from what I understand original copies did have a cassette sleeve.  The audio quality on a couple tracks is slightly dodgy, but tolerable.

For a (slightly) more thorough backgrounder on the I-Rails, point your cursor to the hyperlinks in this article. A very hearty thanks to the gentlemen who digitized these tracks and sent them in my direction!

01. Trust
02. There Goes Another
03. Mercury Don't Understand
04. Oh God
05. The Man I Gave a Ride
06. Poets Wear Black
07. Waiting for the Sun
08. Let Me Go
09. I Thought You Were My Friend
10. Adventures in the Rain


Dave Back said...

I'm glad that my digitizing found a home outside of the circle of friends that grew up with this band in the 80's.

As you mentioned in your article, the 1st album is lowest quality (Remember, this was the mid-80's, studios were not cheap and of highest quality), the 2nd album was better, but then the 3rd and 4th one was done at the same studio that Toad The Wet Sprocket did their 1st album at, thus as highest quality you can get on a local band budget.

Plus, Tim Lauterio was brought in on the 2nd album (Unfocused) which in my opinion, brought the rhythm style to the band that lasted throughout the I-Rails (And even into PRG).

My copy has a poor copy for artwork that I can send if you like. It's old school local band quality. Basically, they used regular paper with a black on white Xerox copy for their sleeve.

Thanks again for the great articles over the 2011 year on one of my favorite bands of all-time. It's been a pleasure during this for everyone.


spavid said...

Thank you Dave, big time. This little series wouldn't have been possible without you. There's a body of damn fine music there. You're welcome to send a pic of the Valentino cover to the email address in my profile. I appreciate the background info s well. Very nice.

Thenamelessavenger said...

Quality aside, there are some songs in here. Obviously 10, but i mean there are some legitimate songs here. The Man I Gave a Ride is my fav. I'd love the artwork for my iTunes library.

Tanks for posting!

Ryan said...

anyway you could update this one and Panharmonium as well? I had my first listen of them when you recently posted that updated link for Nine Songs From Nowhere and I'm now on an I-Rails kick it seems.

spavid said...

The link has been updated.

Unknown said...

Just for the record, Song #1 is "Trust," not "Thrust."

spavid said...

Thanks on the correction Jerry.

Anonymous said...

hi can you please re up ... thank you : )