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Chameleons - This Never Ending Now

  by Anthony Strutt

published: 14 / 11 / 2002

Chameleons - This Never Ending Now
Label: Select Label
Format: CD


Collection of 12 re-recorded Chameleons classics, largely taken from their first 3 albums, which takes away the hardness of the originals, but that loses none of their power

'The Never Ending Now' was until recently going to be called 'Strip 2'. It is an album of 12 re-recorded Chameleons classics, and features reworkings of songs from their first 3 albums, 'Script of the Bridge' (1983), 'What Does Anything Mean Basically ?' (1985) and Strange Times' (1987), and also 2 tracks, 'All Around' and 'Miracles and Wonders' from last year's 'Why Call It Anything ?' The collection starts with one of the group's earliest tracks, 'The Fan and the Bellows', which did not appear on any of the above albums, but on a US only compilation, which featured tracks from '81 to '83. 'The Fan and the Bellows' was a song that vocalist Mark Burgess refused ever to play again, until he was hassled by a fan into changing his mind. The Chameleons then put it back into their live set when they played some semi-acoustic shows last year. The reason for its omission from their set was because Mark is now in love with his stunning girlfriend, Daniella, so he felt that it was inappropriate to sing this early song about masturbation, which was written when he was still as spotty teenager. Acoustically it is not as savage as its original version, but none of these tracks are. I have interviewed Mark many times over the years, and on the first occasion that I spoke to him, the Chameleons had broken up and with some years to go until they reformed at the end of 2000, he was at that stage in his third post Chameleons band, Invincible. He was working with ex-Wonky Alice guitarist, Yves Altand. Yves is now back with Wonky Alice, but taught him then to use his voice as an instrument, while before he had always had a shouty vocal style. The band have reworked the rest of songs with mostly acoustic arrangements, but also throw in the odd bit of electric guitar. Again, as with all Chameleons releleases, the sleeve is graced with a great painting by guitarist Reg Smithies, which this time features question mark birds flying. This is a great album for early morning or late at night, and for when you want to listen to the Chameleons, but can't take the hardness of the originals. On this album Mark has done Yves proud with his vocal delivery. The album is tailed off by an electric cover of David Bowie's 'Moonage Daydream'. Class stuff indeed, which is followed by some messing around and Mark's laughter.

Track Listing:-
1 The Fan And The Bellows
2 Tears
3 Intrigue In Tangiers
4 Is It Any Wonder?
5 Seriocity
6 Swamp Thing
7 All Around
8 Second Skin
9 Home Is Where The Heart Is
10 Miracles And Wonders
11 View From A Hill
12 Moonage Daydream

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live reviews

London Dingwalls, 13/11/2002
Chameleons - London Dingwalls, 13/11/2002
Anthony Strutt catches the reformed 80's group Chameleons on "perfect" form in London, and enjoys one of the "best shows" that he has ever seen
Manchester Ritz, 18th Dec 2000

favourite album

Script of the Bridge (2008)
Chameleons - Script of the Bridge
Anthony Strutt writes about Manchester post punk group the Chameleons' 1983 debut album, 'Script of the Bridge', which has just been re-released in a 25th anniversary double CD remastered edition

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