Creation Records

Albums 141-150

Rating Key


CRE 141
Teenage Filmstars - Rocket Charms
noise annoys
1) Pressure
2) Tension
3) Frantic
4) Bad Thoughts
5) Lapse
6) Alone
7) Lost
8) Broken
9) Dark
10) Nothing


Yet another Ed Ball album, with assistance from Dick Green, and an extension of the earlier Star album also attributed to Teenage Filmstars. Side One is again a series of songs distorted out of all coherence in the studio, some bearable and some deadly, while after the intermission the album acquires more of a soundtrack feel as if composed for some low key horror flick, generally downbeat, doomy and grim. And a few samples are chucked in here and there just for a change. The musicians are listed as The Shed, Dean Angel, Jet Powers and Sister Anne, the producer as Baby Jesus and the creative editor Bilbo Baggins. Surely a line-up like that would have added a bit of excitement and interest to the proceedings? Has anybody played this album more than once out of choice? Not me. There's a lot you can do in forty-eight minutes twenty-three seconds.
CRE 142
Medicine - Shot Forth Self Living
do the collapse
1) One More
2) Aruca
3) Defective
4) A Short Happy Life
5) 5ive
6) Sweet Explosion
7) Queen of Tension
8) Miss Drugstore
9) Christmas Song

Whoa. If you want to play with noise, there are ways and means of doing it properly and Brad Laner's band from the San Fernando Valley nailed it right on the head first time. Wailing guitars and primitive drums carry us off into a sonic adventure that is well worth writing home about. Some half-decent artwork doesn't hurt as Laner and Beth Thompson harmonise before a backdrop of splendid disharmony. 'One More' soars over nine minutes, and rightfully so, while 'Aruca' (single 135) is simply gorgeous, Thompson singing over herself as the world nods along in wondrous acceptance. 'Defective' is anything but, while 'A Short Happy Life' is an elegant slow burner that ends in a fitting maelstrom. '5ive' (single 141) opens side two on another high, with lighter, dazzling guitar work, though 'Sweet Explosion' is a bit of a misfit, strangely so as it is the sole band composition. 'Queen Of Tension' gets things back on track, breaking apart halfway through, while 'Miss Drugstore' see-saws delightfully before tearing out its soul. Noisily. 'Christmas Song' is a brute of a finale, as far removed from 'Frosty The Snowman' as pink icing to meths. Momentous. This is a terrific album, sounding like nothing else on earth, and still sounding bloody, bloody good. One track away from getting the six stars, but if you can find it, buy it.
CRE 143
Swervedriver - Mezcal Head
do the collapse
1) For Seeking Heat
2) Duel
3) Blowin' Cool
4) MM Abduction
5) Last Train To Satansville
6) Harry & Maggie
7) A Change Is Gonna Come
8) Girl On A Motorbike
9) Duress
10) You Find It Everywhere

It was a slightly different Swervedriver who released their second album in August 1993, with drummer Graham Bonnar and bassist Adi Vines having left the band. With only sticksman Jez Hindmarsh recruited to the ranks, stalwarts Adam Franklin and Jimmy Hartridge had to stand in on bass during the recording, though the finished article showed not much else had changed with Swervedriver still fond of their Americana: the album was named after the famous Mexican drink, though there was a bull on the pleasing front cover, not a worm. The sound is possibly less furious than on Raise, and a touch subtler, but this is still a fairly hefty article with pounding rhythms and big guitars as the vocalists deliver without emotion or undue effort. The first single 'Duel' (single 136) achieved the band's highest chart placing, reaching No.60 for one week, but it's a hell of a grower and a good deal more intricate than you imagine at first listen. All said, there isn't a weak moment here: Swervedriver reach a level and never waver, though they don't carry you to the highest peaks. 'Last Train To Satansville' (single 174) was issued as a follow-up single but failed to chart. The album was packaged with a twelve-page booklet so the label obviously had high hopes for it, though it made only No.55 in the album chart, some eleven places lower than its predecessor.
CRE 144
Teenage Fanclub - Thirteen
do the collapse
1) Hang On
2) The Cabbage
3) Radio
4) Norman 3
5) Song To The Cynic
6) 120 Mins
7) Escher
8) Commercial Alternative
9) Fear Of Flying
10) Tears Are Cool
11) Ret Liv Dead
12) Get Funky
13) Gene Clark

Having reached No.22 in the album charts and even scraped the lower end of the US charts with their Bandwagonesque album, Creation's hopes were high for the Fanclub's follow-up in October 1993. Thirteen, however, emerged to scathing criticism in the music press and though it entered the charts at a magnificent (for the label) No.14, it quickly dropped away and disappeared from sight after three weeks. The debut single 'Radio' (single 130), a bouncy if unremarkable number, just missed the top thirty as it was snapped up by expectant fans, but the follow-up, the rather repetitive 'Norman 3' managed only No.50. Though opening well with the nicely broken-up 'Hang On', the album is certainly a little downbeat in mood. 'The Cabbage' is a decent enough amble, but after the disappointing singles, 'Song To The Cynic' and '120 Mins' are grim. Side two opens on a more lively note with 'Escher' while 'Commercial Alternative' is probably the highlight of the collection, carried along by a nice bass riff. 'Fear Of Flying' is also decent, floating on a cushion of guitars with some good swearing, but things tail off again after that until the pleasing 'Gene Clark' closes proceedings with metronomic precision. Thirteen isn't really that bad, just uninspired and largely uninspiring.
CRE 145
Medalark Eleven - Shaped Up, Shipped Out
do the collapse
1) Cute
2) Smoke
3) Coffee
4) Throw Down A Rope
5) Metalark
6) Snake
7) Socket
8) I Call Your Name
9) Diving
10) Querencia
11) Big Sharp Knife


The Bodines had left Creation when they were snapped up by the new major-funded Pop label where they released a number of quality singles (and one album) which failed to make any impact at all on the charts. Disillusioned, the band broke up with singer and guitarist Michael Ryan forming a new band, Medalark Eleven, almost named after the legendary Harlem Globetrotters basketball star Meadowlark Lemon. Described as 'baggy a year too late' the band's sound was certainly a departure from the Bodines' jangly pop, with a dancy, more soulful, edge to it. As a work in that genre, Shaped Up, Shipped Out, released in August 1993, stands up pretty well with some moments of real quality. Creation presaged the release with the lovely 'I Call Your Name' (single 132) which probably did the band a disservice as it sounds exactly like the Bodines and in no way reflects what you find on the album. The second single, 'Smoke' (single 144), is an appealingly urgent groover and far more representative. Add to these the funky 'Cute' and the nice guitar work on 'Coffee' and there is much to admire. It's not all great though. The instrumentals 'Metalark' and 'Querencia' don't add much to the equation and 'Snake' is a little cumbersome, but on the whole this is pretty decent fare. Unfortunately, the band only lasted the one album so we were not able to see how they developed.
CRE 146
Primal Scream - Give Out But Don't Give Up
do the collapse
1) Jailbird
2) Rocks
3) (I'm Gonna) Cry Myself Blind
4) Funky Jam
5) Big Jet Plane
6) Free
7) Call On Me
8) Struttin'
9) Sad And Blue
10) Give Out But Don't Give Up
11) I'll Be There For You
12) Everybody Needs Somebody


How to follow Screamadelica? Primal Scream were on a hiding to nothing as they looked to emulate what had already become the era's defining release. The 'Dixie Narco EP' (single 117) had already seen the band heading spiritually to the southern states of America and the cover of the new album revealed this was very much where they were currently camped. Drafting in as producer the legendary Atlantic engineer Tom Dowd who had popularised stereo and multi-track recording, the Scream embark on a trawl around the Deep South which sees them have a stab at country, soul, funk and Mick Taylor-era Rolling Stones. The first single 'Rocks' (single 129) is a classic Stones pastiche which few bands could have produced with so much conviction, while the follow-up and album opener 'Jailbird' (single 145) is a cracker, dancey and decorated with great horns. '(I'm Gonna) Cry Myself Blind' (single 183) was the third track taken off the album, a slower number which demonstrated just how much Bobby Gillespie's singing had improved since the band's early days. Denise Johnson takes over vocals on the pleasant 'Free', with funk superstar George Clinton joining in on 'Give Out But Don't Give Up' a slow, dubby number. A bit hit and miss, but plenty to enjoy here. The album reached No.2 in the UK charts and stayed around for eighteen weeks which was one better than Screamadelica managed so it is difficult to argue it was anything but a success. Additionally, 'Rocks' broke the top ten in the singles chart, peaking at No.7.
CRE 147
Ride - Carnival Of Light
do the collapse
1) Moonlight Medicine
2) 1000 Miles
3) From Time To Time
4) Natural Grace
5) Only Now
6) Birdman
7) Crown Of Creation
8) How Does It Feel To Feel?
9) Endless Road
10) Magical Spring
11) Rolling Thunder
12) I Don't Know Where It Comes From

Having burst on to the scene like a tidal wave, with a trio of magnificent EPs and impressive self assurance on stage, Ride's second album had been a bit of a disappointment, so a lot of hopes were riding on this June 1994 release. Creation, again, pulled out all of the stops with the album packaged nicely into a double 12-inch, with a 20-page lyric booklet included with the CD. Unfortunately, it was a creative disaster, receiving poor reviews and quickly becoming known (as David Cavanagh records) as 'Carnival Of Shite'. With the first disc largely given over to Mark Gardener's songs and the second to Andy Bell's (a telling sign of the band's growing divisions), the album opens atmospherically with Deep Purple's Jon Lord laying down some doomy keyboards but, as with many of the tracks, the vocals fail to match the quality of the backing music which leads to ultimate disappointment. Maybe because of this inherent weakness in the band Gardener's numbers tend to quietness, passing pleasantly and forgettably, other than 'From Time To Time' which is the highlight, appealingly melodic. Bell's songs, also, lack punch with 'Birdman' (single 155) probably the only band-penned track worthy of a single release. Disappointingly, the only time the band really let themselves go is in their cover version of the Creation's 'How Does It Feel To Feel?' (single 184) which has some guts and stands out against most of the album's hippy, pastoral weediness.
CRE 148
The Jazz Butcher Conspiracy - Western Family
do the collapse
1) Southern Mark Smith
2) Shirley Maclaine
3) Sister Death
4) Still And All
5) Pineapple Tuesday
6) Angels
7) Beautiful Snow-White Hair
8) She's On Drugs
9) Girl-Go
10) She's A Yoyo
11) Racheland
12) Everybody's Talkin'
13) Tugboat Captain

14) Over The Rainbow
Live albums on Creation are somewhat of a rarity and can vary in quality enormously. These recordings take in the band's tour of America and Canada in 1992 and there are takes from New Orleans, Atlanta, Alabama, Chicago and Toronto. The sound quality is patchy (but not awful) as Pat Fish remarks upon on his website. "Yes, I believe something horrible DID happen to the tapes somewhere. The first time I played this CD we sat there laughing. It's a souvenir. After all, if you were there, you can remember what it really sounded like. For loonie completists only, for sure, though, if you listen through the muck, you'll see that we did our bit." There certainly is some appeal to hearing the Butcher's songs in a rawer form than the very clean and tidy recordings that made it on to their albums. Here we have four tracks from 'Cult Of The Basement', four from 'Condition Blue' and a few oddities including a very laid back 'Everybody's Talkin', a terrific version of Galaxie 500's 'Tugboat Captain' and an hilarious 'Over The Rainbow'. Over seventy-seven minutes of music are included and if you can get over the patchy sound there is some decent stuff here. Rotten sleeve though.
CRE 149
The Boo Radleys - Giant Steps
do the collapse
1) I Hang Suspended
2) Upon 9th And Fairchild
3) Wish I Was Skinny
4) Leaves and Sand
5) Butterfly McQueen
6) Rodney King
7) Thinking Of Ways
8) Barney (... And Me)
9) Spun Around
10) If You Want It, Take It
11) Best Lose The Fear
12) Take The Time, Around
13) Lazarus

14) One Is For
15) Run My Way Runway
16) I've Lost The Reason
17) The White Noise Revisited
August 1993 saw the release of the second Creation album from The Boo Radleys to great critical acclaim, the NME naming it their Album of the Year. Again packaged as a double disc set, Giant Steps followed very much in the same vein as the impressive Everything's Alright Forever. The set opens with the blistering 'I Hang Suspended' (single 147) before the reggae influenced 'Upon 9th And Fairchild' carries you away on screeching guitars. 'Wish I Was Skinny' (single 169) has more of a pop sensibility though it failed to climb any higher than No.75 in the charts, before a harder edge returns with the shredding 'Leaves And Sand' where Martin Carr's maniac guitar counterbalances Simon Rowbottom's smooth vocal. Breathtaking stuff. And so it continues, a melting pot of ideas, intrigue and downright noise ... and never a dull moment. The fourth single taken from the album 'Barney (...And Me) (single 178) is commercial gold and achieved the highest placing of any of the five tracks taken from the collection, though it certainly deserved to do better than a lowly No.48. The label took the unusual step of releasing 'Lazarus' twice (a nice irony?), first off as it stood on the album (single 137) and then as a remix EP (single 187) though again neither made much of a dent on the charts or airwaves. Again, it is a terrific tune, with slightly warped horns and a vocal buried underneath its own backing harmonies. Sixty-four minutes of magic.
CRE 150
Felt - Absolute Classic Masterpieces Volume II
do the collapse
1) Ballad Of The Band
2) I Didn't Mean To Hurt You
3) Magellan
4) I Will Die With My Head In Flames
5) Sandman's On The Rise Again
6) The Final Resting Of The Ark
7) Autumn
8) There's No Such Thing As Victory
9) Space Blues
10) Be Still
11) Song For William S. Harvey
12) Indian Sculptures
13) Jewel Sky

14) Voyage To Illumination
15) Grey Streets
16) A Wave Crushed On Rocks
17) Hours Of Darkness Have Changed My Mind
18) She Lives By The Castle
19) Stained-Glass Windows In The Sky
20) Dark Red Birds
21) Bitter End
22) Don't Die On My Doorstep
23) The Darkest Ending
24) Train Above The City
25) On Weegee's Sidewalk
26) Run Chico Run
Three tracks from 'Ballad Of The Band', two tracks from 'Rain Of Crystal Spires', two tracks from 'Space Blues', three tracks from 'Forever Breathes The Lonely Word', four tracks from 'Let The Snakes Crinkle Their Heads To Death', three tracks from 'Poem Of The River', three tracks from 'The Pictorial Jackson Review', three tracks from 'Train Above The City' and three tracks from 'The Final Resting Of The Ark' all packaged up in a double CD. There are some good tracks, some poor tracks, and all have been dealt with before. Volume I featured the band's recordings on the Cherry Red label.
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