Themes From Great Cities

It might have come to your attention that I'm not a regular poster of love and understanding, which you will just have to get used to. I will however, have bursts of creativity where I move completely randomly from post to post with no rhyme or reason. I have recently posted a few singles (7 & 12”) and the odd bootleg which have been received very well by all who visit. More of the same will continue as you, dear readers, seem to be enjoying them.

Some of the rips are my own, but many more are from other blogs and I’m just sharing the wealth. If other bloggers out there wish to share the rips from my posts, please as I do, host them yourself. To combat this, the FLAC files that are over 6 months old will be replaced with MP3 files.

Finally I am happy to re-up old posts where the link has expired. Please comment in the relevant posts comments box.


Gathering Dust

Everyone knows the hit "I Melt with You" but does anyone know that before Modern English hit the mainstream they were a post-punk noise band in the vein of Joy Division and Bauhaus?
Modern English were one of the bands that Ivo and Peter had originally approached Martin Mills about in 1979. After a self-released 45 (‘Drowning Man’), they made their 4AD debut with the ‘Swans On Glass’ single, which was followed later in the year by ‘Gathering Dust’. They also featured on the Presage(s) EP and were the only band from that compilation who continued to release records on 4AD. 38 years on, ‘Gathering Dust’ remains a crucial release in 4AD's history for reasons that have nothing to do with the music it contains. When the original art director proved unable to provide the sleeve art, Peter called a friend who recommended a young graphic designer named Vaughan Oliver. A strange coincidence ensued: Modern English had printed up some T-shirts which utilized a Diane Arbus photograph of two people watching television, while Vaughan had utilized the same image in his design portfolio. Result: Vaughan landed the job and began a relationship with 4AD that continues to this day. Modern English expanded on the promise of their singles with Mesh And Lace, a memorably atmospheric album that helped re-position guitar-rock in the wake of Joy Division, PiL and Wire. It also sported the first official 23 Envelope sleeve credit, thus ushering in an artistic collaboration that would provide 4AD with a recognizable visual identity. Modern English finished off 1981 with the single ‘Smiles And Laughter’.
Formed in Colchester, Essex, England, in 1979 by Robbie Grey (vocals), Gary McDowell (guitar, vocals), and Michael Conroy (bass, vocals), Modern English were originally known as The Lepers. The group expanded to Modern English when Richard Brown (drums) and Stephen Walker (keyboards) were subsequently added to the line-up of the band.
The debut album Mesh And Lace and the accompanying singles are a must have for any discerning post punk collection.

Taken from the original album and singles to glorious MP3 @ 320kbps


Mesh And Lace (4AD – CAD 105)

A1.  16 Days
A2.  Just A Thought
A3.  Move In Light
A4.  Grief
B1.  The Token Man
B2.  A Viable Commercial
B3.  Black Houses
B4.  Dance Of Devotion (A Love Song)

Swans On Glass (4AD – AD 6)
A.     Swans On Glass
B.     Incident

Gathering Dust (4AD – AD 15)
A.     Gathering Dust
B.     Tranquillity Of A Summer Moment (Vice Versa)

Smiles And Laughter (4AD – AD 110)
A.     Smiles And Laughter
B.     Mesh And Lace


And shush, the album and singles are also back in FLAC


  1. what is the decryption key for the flac?

  2. Apologies for the FLAC is now unlocked

  3. Thanks Andie! A great 'gathering' here.