mudcub (mudcub) wrote,

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Introducinge "R.O. Manse"

In 1982, I was twelve years old, and I used to listen to the radio while soaking in the bathtub with all the lights turned out (true story!). Anyway, my favorite radio station was KFAI 90.3 "Fresh Air" radio out of the West Bank of Minneapolis. Years later when I was in college, I volunteered there as an engineer, plugging in cables and keeping the antique turntables and tape carts working. I can still splice quarter-inch tape like the wind!

But back to being twelve years old. One night, KFAI played a song by what would quickly become one of my favorite singers R.O. Manse. It made me discover the beauty and wonder that was northern rural english New Wave music. Sure, I liked the stuff he did with his previous band Ka-Smash!, but his solo stuff made me feel like the music crept into the bathtub and fucked my ears. And that was a pretty scary feeling for a pre-teen to have. I'm still not sure it was legal.

Take a look at this video. AST records just released a greatest hits CD called "R.O. Magic: The Best of R.O. Manse" that has some of my favorites on it, but I'm still hoping for a box set of all seven albums including imports. I didn't really like the bonus tracks on this compilation... who needs a "Shep Pettibone '89 Remix of the '87 Remix" of the hit Ladyboy, when the original is so much better? Plus, the live acoustic version of "I Have A Synthesizer" doesn't make much sense when there isn't any electricity to plug the synthesizer into. It's pure filler to pad the CD out to twenty minutes, in my opinion.

There is a great interview here that might make more sense. I hope this music brings back fond memories of the eighties for you. Personally, I'll be listening to my copy today with headphones on. But not those trendy little iPod earbuds that all the kids have nowadays. No, I'm busting out my 'phones with the little condom-like blue foam pads that used to slip off all the time and get sweaty, connected to the flimsy metal band that went over your head. Old school baby! Now, where's my Walkman and my cassingle collection?

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