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8 April 2009

A Certain Ratio - 'To Each...' (Factory)

Source: Ross, of course, 22 May 2002 for a couple bucks.

Another gatefold, though I'm not so down with the paintings (by Ann); Peter Christopherson
is credited with 'Cover co-ordination' so hooray for that. These moody Mancunians went to New Jersey to record this and maybe this setting is what pumped a little American disco life into their veins. The bass and clattery drums drive the songs, which to be honest lack a bit in the songwriting department. Things get a bit Seinfeld and there's some porn guitar, but the vocals remind you that this is a record from a Manchester band in 1980. Always gotta love the slight fascist overtones on these things, both in the band name and the weird photo of uniformed men surrounded by red borders (Sleazy's co-ordination again!). This is a great record to listen to if you live in the North, wear mostly black, and have your own club night where you don't play anything made after 1981 except for 'Da Da Da' by Trio. Certainly the long Kraftwerky moments are to be appreciated but you don't know for sure because they aren't as direct as you'd like. A Certain Ratio are probably one of the most interesting 'big' bands from this era but I never completely clicked with them- maybe it's too funky or maybe this was just a consolation prize cause I don't have any Crispy Ambulance albums.

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