Creation Records

Albums 191-200

Rating Key


CRE 191
Glen Matlock - Who's He Think He Is When He's At Home?
noise annoys
1) My Little Philistine
2) Apparently
3) Don't Put Me On
4) My Man
5) Hot Water
6) My Big Mouth
7) The Right Stuff
8) Story Of Your Life
9) A Different World
10) What Do You Want From Me
11) Something For Nothing
12) Walk It Like You Talk It


What better thing to do when you own your own record label than to get to work with your heroes and Alan McGee followed up his work with The Creation by releasing the first solo album from former Sex Pistol Glen Matlock. It was the bass player's departure from the Pistols' ranks that really signalled the end of the band, for not only did Matlock write 'Pretty Vacant', but most of the rest of the Pistols' music, and it was his inate understanding of how to combine melody with power that made the band's songs so memorable. And that understanding is evident here from the moment 'My Little Philistine' (single 229) opens in a punky guitar explosion and drives along like a bat out of hell. The whole album is unrelenting; a fast and furious barrage of huge, major chords embellished by sizzling riffs, singing bass lines and thumping drums. With his former Rich Kids colleague Steve New on guitar, alongside Chris McCormick, and Keith Baxter, the future 3 Colours Red drummer, with the sticks, this group makes a hell of a noise and the only let downs are the muggy production and Matlock's vocals which are unremarkable and often difficult to understand which can be annoying given the wordy nature of most of the songs. Here Matlock must take some of the blame as he produced the album himself, though it is impossible to know what financial restraints he was operating under. Highlights include the towering 'Don't Put Me On', the gloriously 1977 'My Man' and 'The Right Stuff' which sounds as if it could have been made by The Professionals, though there are plenty of other good bits and lots of punky guitar touches that lift the soul. If ever an album needed remastering by an understanding genius with unlimited resources, this is the one. And the CD booklet needs to be printed the correct way round.
CRE 192
18 Wheeler - Year Zero
do the collapse
1) The Hours And The Times
2) Crabs
3) Stay
4) Grease
5) Prozac Beats
6) The Ballad Of Paul Verlaine
7) Everythings Dead
8) Retard
9) Blue Eyed Son
10) Den Dagon, Den Sorgen
11) Plainsong

Despite being largely ignored in Britain and generally disparaged in the media, 18 Wheeler's retro pop had gone down much better in parts of Europe and Japan, so Creation decided to persist with the band and launched their third and final album for the label in early 1997. Year Zero, very much as its title implies, marks a radical change of approach, the band adopting a more experimental, dancier sound in an apparent reaction against constant accusations they were too generic and narrow in their outlook. Sean Jackson sings the same, light pop songs, but the backing music is mashed up and played out to a dance beat which can sound a bit odd, 18 Wheeler seemingly caught between a groove and a soft place. The overall result is, perhaps, to satisfy nobody, the pop fans disgruntled with the lack of classic song structures and the dance fans finding the results all a bit light, a mere scratch on the surface of the underground. Creation pushed the album hard, with an unparalleled five singles being released, and various mixes of them in existence. The rather plodding 'The Hours And The Times' (single 219) surprisingly opened the way, and was followed by the much livelier 'Crabs' (single 232), the heavier and more convincing 'Prozac Beats' (single 241), the clean and uncomplicated 'Stay' (single 249) – the only release from the band ever to trouble the charts, scraping in for one week at No.59 – and the pleasant 'Grease' (single 255) which featured Glen Matlock on bass. It's a tricky one, Year Zero, recorded at a time bassist Alan Hake remembers Creation becoming 'less special', losing some its identity in the battle for mainstream success, so maybe it is not surprising artists were in two minds about which way to turn. Some of it is decent and some of it just sounds wrong. The vinyl version of the album initially came with an additional twelve-inch single featuring remixes of 'Stay', 'Crabs' and 'The Hours And The Times', strangely numbered CRE 193TL which fits in neither with the album nor the singles catalogue. 18 Wheeler were recording their follow-up album when they were dropped by the label; reportedly they were allowed to keep the master tapes, but the record has yet to see the light of day.
CRE 193
The Diggers - Mount Everest
do the collapse
1) Circles
2) Peace Of Mind
3) Waking Up
4) Nobody's Fool
5) Come On Easy
6) Downbeat
7) East Coast
8) OK Alright
9) Hormonious
10) Passport To Rec
11) They Said I'd Know
12) Up Against It




Not one of Creation's greatest success stories, Scottish band The Diggers were introduced to the label by The Boo Radleys' Martin Carr and they went on to produce three singles and this album, released in February 1997. Unlike many of their contemporaries, the Diggers' guitar pop was simple and unhurried and possibly not particularly radio-friendly. Two singles paved the way for the album release, 1996's 'Peace of Mind' (single 226), with its edgy retro feel, and 'Nobody's Fool' (single 234), a well constructed, brighter tune with some jangly guitars and nice singing from Chris Miezitis. A third single also saw light of day the following year, the unspectacular 'OK Alright' (single 259) being a rare upbeat number. Beautifully produced by Charlie Francis, who had worked wonders on Idha's Troublemaker, the whole album sounds clean and powerful; in fact it is razor sharp, helped by the uncomplicated nature of the songs and the band's obvious desire not to embellish their sound with bells and whistles. It may all be just a little too disciplined as the band never lose their grip and let fly, offering up carefully judged solos and harmonies, and taking care that not a hair is out of place. This has the effect of making it all sound a little cold, calculating and professional at times, but what is lacking in warmth is often compensated for with sheer good taste. There are some decent songs here. 'Hormonious' is carried along by simply effective guitars, and 'Passport To Rec' is well worked with a nice fairground organ preceding an unexpected Beach Boys outro. 'Up Against It' is a pleasing way to end the album, with a rare positive lyric, some nice harmonies and some tidy playing. All in all, this lacks a bit of heart but may strike a chord with its elementary single-mindedness. The cover is awful though, and the artwork on the singles isn't any better, making the purchasing of the whole package an off-putting experience.
CRE 194
The Boo Radleys - C'mon Kids
do the collapse
1) C'mon Kids
2) Meltin's Worm
3) Melodies For The Deaf (Colours For The Blind)
4) Get On The Bus
5) Everything Is Sorrow
6) Bullfrog Green
7) What's In The Box? (See Watcha Got)
8) Four Saints
9) New Brighton Promenade
10) Fortunate Sons
11) Shelter
12) Ride The Tiger
13) One Last Hurrah

After three staggering albums for Creation, the last of which had taken them to the summit of pop stardom, it was fascinating to find out exactly what The Boo Radleys had in mind for their follow-up release and, of course, they did not disappoint, September 1996's C'mon Kids being as difficult and distended as could be. The band protested they were not trying to scare away their new fans, but were offering them something different to experience backed by the call, "C'mon kids and smash the lock, reach within and find the key, crawl inside and leave the rest behind." However, what they would find would more than likely send their new audience scuttling behind the sofa in terror as 'C'mon Kids' (single 236) opens with huge, crashing guitars as Simon Rowbottom screams out, "Fuck the ones who tell you that life is merely a time before dying". Not exactly easy listening, commercial gold. It doesn't get any nicer, the album offering nearly fifty-three minutes of psychedelic, heavily mashed up sounds, adorned by sizzling and roaring guitars and Rowbottom's fabulous vocals stretched as never before, but always making the grade. What the album lacks is the gorgeously commercial pop songs that had interspersed their other releases; the closest thing here being 'New Brighton Promenade' which almost does the job, but ultimately can't escape the clutches of weirdness and is murdered by some ferocious wah-wah guitar. Somehow Creation found three tracks to release as singles, the first 'What's In The Box (See Watcha Got)' (single 220) managed to make it to No.25 in the charts despite its driving ferocity, with the blistering 'C'mon Kids' reaching No.18 and the impossible 'Ride The Tiger' (single 248) creeping up to No.38 This is an astonishing song, over six and half minutes, where Martin Carr's gorgeous guitar accompanies Rowbottom's gentle vocals before the whole song is lost in a huge crescendo, a cock crows, we have a little natter before a countdown to the world turning backwards, and Rowbottom returns to abandon the song with an acoustic stutter. Unbelieveable. And it's actually astonishing to realise that none of this happens by accident. This is a marvellously intricate and painstakingly constructed record that will blow your head off your shoulders. The world needs bands like this. Crawl inside and leave the rest behind. This was released as a double vinyl album containing a bonus seven-inch single containing the tracks 'Skywalker' and 'French Canadian Bean Soup'.
CRE 195
Ed Ball - If A Man Ever Loved A Woman
do the collapse
1) It's Kinda Lonely Where I Am (Acoustic)
2) Firehorse
3) If A Man Ever Loved A Woman
4) She's Just High Maintenance, Baby
5) The Arizona Loner
6) You Only Miss Me When I'm Bleeding
7) The Ballad Of A Lonely Man
8) A Ton Of Blues
9) You're An Idiot Babe
10) It's Kinda Lonely Where I Am


Having hidden behind all sorts of aliases and band names throughout his remarkable Creation career, Ed Ball finally took the plunge and recorded a solo album under his own name, If A Man Ever Loved A Woman released in 1995 and given a catalogue number ahead of the general list of releases. Perhaps fittingly, his effort was backed by a whole cast of Creation big names, the record featuring contributions from Andy Bell of Ride, Martin Carr and Sice of The Boo Radleys, Nick Heyward and Idha. It's a great thing to hear a Ball album where he approaches every track seriously and the result is a pleasant, lightly acoustic collection of songs, draped in melancholia and not a little self pity. Ball has a decent singing voice and an ear for a melody and when he gets its right, he is very good indeed. The sound is nice and clear, helped by the uncomplicated nature of the songs, which were written in differing locations and vividly show how the man simply absorbs his surroundings and turns them into music. 'The Arizona Loner' is a fine example of this, a quality country number written in Dallas and Phoenix. The best of the bunch, however, is 'You Only Miss Me When I'm Bleeding' where Ball plays some terrific piano, skewing the track well away from the prevailing middle of the road course. 'The Ballad Of A Lonely Man' is another top tune, a genuinely heartfelt slow burner with some clever percussive touches. It doesn't all work so well, but on the whole the album is pretty consistent in tone and quality; a good piece of work. Two singles were taken from the album, 'If A Man Ever Loved A Woman' (single 197) and 'It's Kinda Lonely Where I Am' (single 208).
CRE 196
Teenage Fanclub - Songs From Northern Britain
do the collapse
1) Start Again
2) Ain't That Enough
3) Can't Feel My Soul
4) I Don't Want Control Of You
5) Planets
6) It's A Bad World
7) Take The Long Way Round
8) Winter
9) I Don't Care
10) Mount Everest
11) Your Love Is The Place Where I Come From
12) Speed Of Light


After the phenomenally good Grand Prix, it was sadly over two years before Teenage Fanclub completed their follow-up album, a period in which the band released an EP entitled Teenage Fanclub Have Lost It (single 216) containing acoustic versions of a song from each of their four previous albums, the title reflecting the stripped down nature of the recordings, but also maybe hinting the band were struggling to get new songs together. When it eventually emerged, Songs From Northern Britain was a completely different animal; it lacked the attitude and edge that had made Grand Prix so intensely affecting, but it was an accomplished, rounded piece of work that spoke of a band comfortable within itself, but one intent on pulling away from the pressures of the industry and heading for the isolation of the countryside where they could focus on the simple pleasures of life. "Here is a sunrise, ain't that enough?" they ask and on the whole it does nicely. Strangely, if this is a retreat, it earned the band their biggest chart successes with the album hitting No.3 in July 1997 and the elegant, Byrdsian 'Ain't That Enough' (single 228) reaching No.17 in June. Two other singles saw the light of day, Norman Blake's heartfealt 'I Don't Want Control Of You' (single 238) making it to No.43 and 'Start Again' (single 280), with its nice guitar outro, reaching No.54. The overall sound of the album is perhaps rounder than before; there is plenty of acoustic filling to the tracks and here and there strings and synthesisers appear. But it is perhaps the heavier moments that reach the greatest highs, Raymond McGinley's 'It's A Bad World' the highlight, so full of hooks you'd think you were at a pirate convention. Gerard Love's 'Mount Everest' is also pleasing, slower and darker with melancholic guitars sunk below some marvellous clinky piano, but there's plenty to love here and it's well worth a listen. A limited edition of the CD album came out in a digipak cover, while the vinyl versions of Creation albums from this period are difficult to come by, that format not being in vogue at the time and therefore limited in production numbers. Expect to pay heavily for a copy.
CRE 197
Various Artists - Gobshite And Godsend
do the collapse
1) Primal Scream - Rocks
2) Teenage Fanclub - Mellow Doubt
3) Ruby - Paraffin
4) Ed Ball - It's Kinda Lonely Where I Am
5) Heavy Stereo - Sleep Freak
6) Boo Radleys - Reaching Out From Here
7) Oasis - Acquiesce
8) Ride - Natural Grace
9) Teenage Filmstars - Kiss Me
10) Velvet Crush - Why Not Your Baby
11) The Times - Ballad Of Georgie Best
12) 18 Wheeler - Steel Guitars
13) Scuba - Drowning Astronaut


There is little doubt the massive success of Oasis changed Creation and its focus on the commercial appeal of its music. This was noted not only by fans and the media, but by some musicians from within the label itself, so on this 1996 CD-only compilation Alan McGee comments, "People tell me they don't know what Creation stands for anymore. That's the point the only thing it stands for is my own musical taste." A little trite, perhaps, as McGee's tastes appeared to waver according to the relative success of his bands, but no doubt that remained a strong element behind the running of the label until its demise. With over twenty compilation albums already to their credit, Gobshite And Godsend follows a familiar pattern in being an eclectic mix of tracks, though thankfully not delving too far into the past. The highs are obvious: The Boo Radleys track from the Wake Up album, the famous Oasis b-side to 'Some Might Say', and Teenage Fanclub's terrific single 'Mellow Doubt'. There are decent enough tunes from Primal Scream, Heavy Stereo and Ruby, all previously released as singles, a track from Scuba's Underwater Symphonies album and tracks from Ride's poor Carnival Of Light and Velvet Crush's poor Teenage Symphonies To God albums. Add to that 18 Wheeler's 'Steel Guitars' single and you are left with three Ed Ball tracks (of course). Teenage Filmstars' 'Kiss Me' is probably the oldest track here, from the terrible Star album, The Times' 'Ballad Of Georgie Best' is taken from the Alternative Commercial Crossover album, and the acoustic ballad 'It's Kinda Lonely Where I Am', is a recent single release. High, lows, hits, misses, good, bad .... you know how it works by now.
CRE 198
CRE 199
Love Corporation - Dance Stance
do the collapse
1) Cathedrals Of Glitter
2) Don't Fight It Flaunt It
3) Palatial
4) Give Me Some Love
5) And Then We Will Have World Peace
6) Beware The Tranquil Trap
7) Your Mamma Don't Dance And Your Daddy Don't Acid House
8) Twilight Of Babylon
9) Palatial

After a seeming burst of inactivity, four out of the fifteen albums actually released from CRE 183 to CRE 200 were to be produced by Ed Ball, this one being a collection of remixes of his dance tunes under the Love Corporation banner. Track One is the Monkey Mafia Mix by Jon Carter; track two is the Kris Needs Mix; track three is the Danny Rampling mix; track four is the Andy Weatherall Mix; track five is the Tim Brown Mix; track six is the Midfield General Mix by Damian Harris; track seven is the Ultra Living Mix by Tetsushi and Takuma Monaka; track eight is the Mekon Mix by John Gosling; and track nine is the Scuba mix by Kate Holmes. Over seventy-two minutes of thump, thump, thump here if that is your thing, mostly taken from the Intelligentsia album, but if dance tune rehashes are not to your taste this will all blur into one and leave you begging for it to stop long before the end. Tim Brown makes a pretty decent job of things, bringing some warmth to one of the coldest of genres, but there isn't much else here that will encourage another outing. The first half of Intelligentsia was the pinnacle of Ball's dance music output, but I can't see that any of this improves upon it or was really necessary. But, then again, it is probably all about the moment and not the need. But, then again, can a moment be recaptured? In addition to the CD version, this was released as a double album on vinyl in a non-gatefold cover.
CRE 200
Edward Ball - Catholic Guilt
do the collapse
1) The Mill Hill Self Hate Club
2) Love Is Blue
3) Docklands Blues
4) Controversial Girlfriend
5) The Hampstead Therapist
6) Tilt
7) Trailblaze
8) Never Live To Love Again
9) This Is The Story Of My Love
10) This Is Real

With just five catalogue numbers separating Ed Ball's second solo album from his first, it could be believed they followed on closely after each other, but while If A Man Ever Loved A Woman saw light of day in 1995, Catholic Guilt did not follow until 1997. In the intervening months, Ball may have added a 'ward' to his name but otherwise it is clear he has not moved on at all, his songs still fixated with a broken relationship and, if anything, making even more noise about it. Here he leaves behind the acoustic blues of the earlier album, replacing them with a much bigger sound utilising heavier guitars, a full brass section, strings and a welter of backing singers. Andy Bell, Martin Carr, Nick Heyward and Idha again lend a helping hand as Ball pours out his heart and, in all, it's good stuff. Opening with the tormented 'The Mill Hill Self Hate Club' with its Style Council horns, and shutting up shop with 'This Is Real', a terrific, slow building ballad, Catholic Guilt is confident and sure footed and there is an awful lot to enjoy, including the intriguingly psychedelic blues of 'Docklands Blues'. The label released a whole host of singles to promote the album, with the opening number surprisingly getting two separate releases (single 233 and 260) as if Creation couldn't believe it didn't get picked up the first time around. The triumphant 'Trailblaze' (single 239) and the warming 'Love Is Blue (single 244) followed, with the storming 'Controversial Girlfriend' (single 266) also lined up for release but ultimately failing to see light of day. Honest, heartfelt and vulnerable, this is the music Ball should have been making all along, rather than the beautifully produced but ultimately soulless inside jokes of The Times. Oh, and Ball plays a mean harmonica.
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