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Rock - Released January 1, 1986 | LTM Recordings

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Rock - Released April 2, 1996 | LTM Recordings

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Alternative & Indie - Released April 2, 2008 | LTM Recordings

Part of LTM's early-2008 reissue series of a slew of Durutti Column releases that had originally appeared on Crepuscule, Live in Bruxelles was the sole "new" release, though as the title indicates it's actually an archival tape seeing official light for the first time. Taken from a radio soundboard recording done for broadcast, the set is a mix of tracks from The Return of the Durutti Column, the then-unreleased LC, and various singles and one-offs, including the highly obscure, somewhat unsettling physicality-of-romance portrait "Stains (Useless Body)." Compared to the almost preternaturally clean atmospheres of the studio recordings at the time, Live in Bruxelles is rougher around the edges, not just simply because of the recording quality (fair but not pristine) and the mix, which often foregrounds Bruce Mitchell's drums. It's hearing those drums that gives the disc part of its impact, though -- having just recently begun to work with Vini Reilly, you get a sense that he's still testing out the feeling of the partnership to the full, and moments like the breakdown toward the end of "Sketch for Dawn" and the various mini-solos throughout "Jacqueline" show both what a remarkable drummer he is and how well he slotted in with Reilly's own muse. Reilly himself shines as expected; while his singing is much more direct and sharp given the mix, as can especially be heard on a stellar take on "The Missing Boy," as ever it's still a voice notable more for absence rather than presence, translating most of his feelings into his trademark fluid guitar runs and deceptively calm melodies. (There's one notable exception to this via some crazy soloing on "Self Portrait," which almost comes out of nowhere.) An enjoyable bonus appears at the end with the inclusion of an interview done just after the performance, where Reilly thoughtfully answers various, if sometimes muffled, questions about his work, including some thoughts on the balance between experimentalism and accessibility he found himself aiming for (which in many ways remains true through the present day), as well as a calmly stated but fierce denunciation of the venue's PA system he's just performed with. © Ned Raggett /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released August 4, 2008 | LTM Recordings

This release is comprised of studio recordings of pieces performed as live accompaniment for Treatise on the Steppenwolf, a 2003 theatrical adaptation of Hermann Hesse's 1927 novel, Steppenwolf. The production was staged by Twelve Stars, a Glasgow-based company, whose work often explores the experimental intersections of music and theater. Twelve Stars' interest in the dramatic possibilities of music, like their connection with Vini Reilly, was not coincidental: the project's artistic directors, Gerard McInulty and Carolyn Allen, were members of the Wake, erstwhile Factory labelmates of the Durutti Column. Reilly's soundtrack displays his familiar eclecticism, as unaccompanied ethereal guitar kaleidoscopes ("The Title on the Cover") sit comfortably alongside more percussion-driven material, occasionally infused with electronic dance beats ("A Wolf of the Steppes"). Although Reilly sings on one track (something his late manager, Tony Wilson, always discouraged), the most compelling numbers integrate others' vocals sampled from pop and opera, sometimes blending the two within the same track: "Interlude," "Magic Theatre," and "Divided" are sublime examples. Two live segments are also included. One of these ("Lullaby") incorporates a monologue spoken by Carolyn Allen, giving some insight into the way music and the dramatic text worked together in the original theatrical context. Durutti Column fans will recognize many of these tracks: "Mello" was first heard on 2001's Rebellion; versions of "Stupid Steppenwolf" and "A Beautiful Thought" feature on Someone Else's Party (2003) as "Woman" and "Drinking Time," respectively (the latter also appearing on 1998's Time Was Gigantic...When We Were Kids as "Drinking Song"); and "Harry Dreams the Dream" was reincarnated as "Lullaby 4 Nina" on Tempus Fugit (2004). Given this crossover with Reilly's other releases and given that this music was intended as one component of a broader artistic spectacle, Treatise on the Steppenwolf isn't a stand-alone Durutti Column album. However, that's not to deny the quality of the material presented here. © Wilson Neate /TiVo