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Rock - Released September 1, 1974 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 3, 1980 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 1, 1981 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released May 1, 1981 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released April 5, 1982 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 1, 1982 | 4AD

Hearing Nick Currie singing in a decidedly youthful and almost too precious for words fashion that makes his later work as Momus seem like Bon Scott is one thing, but is the album itself any good? Happily the one full-length work that the Happy Family gave the world, expanded on CD thanks to the inclusion of the Puritans single, is a wry little treat. Its connections to Momus' solo work is almost exclusively through the vocals, and even those, as noted, don't quite sound the same -- otherwise, the results from the band are rushed pre-Smiths post-punk indie pop, the type of thing that Girls at Our Best! fans are likely to love. There's plenty of hints of the Postcard-era material that inspired Currie as well (then again, what else could be expected with Weddell in the band) not to mention a bit of goth work here and there (check out the instrumental breaks on "Letter From Hall" or the tense start of the title track). The guest sax from Steve Kettley and violin from Kirsteen McCormick add a nicely off-sense of semi-sophistication to the whole affair, and as a whole The Man on Your Street sounds pitched somewhere between the try-anything-once early-'80s U.K. pop scene and its understated indie milieu. Currie claimed to feel himself as the cross between Mark E. Smith and Kasper Hauser, but generally he comes across as the Bowie-worshipper he undoubtedly was, crossed with a jaunty smoothness that suggests what the musichall tradition would have sounded it if it were more French than Cockney. No matter, it's all good fun spiked with the sly bitterness later Momus records would bring to the fore, and some of the lyrics are still a hilarious scream: "I'm tying up my future with a fine organization/It's called the Red Brigades and they treat employees well." © Ned Raggett /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released April 11, 1983 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released October 31, 1983 | 4AD

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Electronic - Released November 7, 1983 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 22, 1984 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 1, 1984 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released July 1, 1985 | 4AD

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Jazz - Released July 1, 1985 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released July 15, 1985 | 4AD

The Legendary Wolfgang Press and Other Tall Stories compiles the EPs Scarecrow, Water, and Sweatbox, three strong, eclectic efforts produced by Cocteau Twins' Robin Guthrie. Displaying marked leaps in sophistication and textural variety over their earliest work, the set establishes the trio as witty and incisive pop deconstructionists: a tongue-in-cheek cover of Otis Redding's "Respect" reveals a newfound sense of humor, while Neil Young's "Heart of Gold" undergoes such a radical transformation that it even receives a new title, "Heart of Stone." © Jason Ankeny /TiVo
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Electronic - Released August 12, 1985 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released January 13, 1986 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released April 14, 1986 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released May 1, 1986 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 1, 1986 | 4AD

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Alternative & Indie - Released November 1, 1986 | 4AD

Clan of Xymox's second full album (not counting the rudimentary debut EP) is a distinct improvement on the Dutch band's earlier work, and indeed is probably the group's career high point. However, the band's fatal flaws remain clear throughout the album: although these songs are superficially attractive in a goth-dance sort of way, there's little in the way of depth or substance here, and on closer listen, one realizes that the best parts of these songs sounded even better when they appeared on earlier albums by Depeche Mode, Xmal Deutschland, Propaganda, and Bauhaus. The album's high point by far is the proto-acid house "Michelle," which has the dreamy neo-psychedelic textures of Psychic TV's "Godstar" or mid-period Siouxsie and the Banshees. © Stewart Mason /TiVo

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