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Appliance - Reconditioned

  by Jon Rogers

published: 12 / 10 / 2010



Appliance - Reconditioned
Label: RROOP Recordings
Format: CD Box

intro

Comprehensive three CD collection of radio sessions, B-sides, early EPs and unreleased tracks from Exeter-based experimental trio, Appliance


It’s a bit of a cliché in music journalism for some writer to herald the cult appeal of some over-looked or marginalised band. Often it’s just the work of some ego-driven writer allowed to fondly remember that time they caught their favourite band playing a storming set to a capacity audience of five men and a dog in the back room of some farmer’s shed. Clearly the world is a worse place not for embracing the cacophonous noise of four musical illiterates banging away at some gangsta-folk hybrid. But the Exeter-based trio of James Brooks, David Ireland and Michael Parker are perhaps worthy contenders for such a moniker. Unfortunately being a bit too eclectic and diverse didn’t really sit well with hacks who like to departmentalise almost everything. Instead Appliance took a whole load of influences and mixed them all up. The main pulse of Appliance is a post-rock aesthetic, sort of the Aphex Twin covering Main. While another big influence tended to be a Germanic motorik pulse from the likes of CAN, Neu! and Harmonia. Then there are flashes of the minimalist composers like Steve Reich and the more experimental elements of ambient from Tortoise and Brian Eno. And the band aren’t afraid to a bit of rock posing either and tracks like ‘Sleeping Machines’ can be shuffling along before shifting gear to some drone rock inspiration. And just for good measure it’s all sprinkled with a hint of Bowie-esque glam and glitter. All this is gathered up on the comprehensive collection ‘Re-Conditioned’ which brings together the band’s four John Peel radio sessions as well as B-sides, early EPs and the odd previously unreleased track. Spread over a sizeable three CDs. Pretty much everything of interest is here before the band went on to sign with Mute. Perhaps listening to all three CDs back-to-back might just be a bit too much to take. There’s some fantastic material here though. Perhaps of most interest is the first disc of the band’s Peel Sessions, with a great version of ‘Food Music’. At times though Appliance lift a bit too whole-heartedly, especially from the likes of CAN and Neu! But any band that can come up with such a diverse array of songs from the likes of ‘This is the Place’ to the shuffling pulse of ‘All the Words for Snow’ and the more experimental ‘Number Three Channel is Clear’ should really be embraced warmly.



Track Listing:-
1 Tuesday Is Nearly Over
2 Mountains 1
3 As Far As I Can See
4 Violins
5 A Little More Information
6 Homing Devices
7 Navigating The Nursery Slopes
8 Comrades (In A Moscow Hotel)
9 Personal Stereo
10 Electra
11 Slow Roller
12 Fast Music
13 Pre-Rocket Science
14 Pacifica
15 Throwing A Curve Ball
16 West Waves
17 All The Words For Snow
18 Sleeping Machines
19 Bruises
20 Nocturnal Walker
21 Homing Devices
22 Milkrace
23 Return To Telemark
24 Loop The Loop
25 We Are Not Built To Last
26 Lalo
27 Spies Of Rota
28 Rev A
29 Outer
30 Weightless Conditions
31 Number Three Channel Is Clear
32 King Of The Flight Simulator
33 In The Event Of Just Looking
34 Ursa Major
35 For Tonight
36 Mach One
37 Slow Drive
38 We Are Not Stationary
39 This Is The Place
40 Ikb
41 Pleasure Driving
42 Open
43 Concentration To Brightness
44 Smoother



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interviews


Interview (2002)
Appliance - Interview
Often described as a post rock group, Appliance's fourth album 'Are You Earthed ?' finds them moving away from electronica and back to their earlier guitar sound. Anthony Strutt chats to them about coloured vinyl, record deals and the album's long delay


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