Medium Medium

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Medium Medium

Medium Medium performing at the Knitting Factory, NYC, 2004.jpg

Medium Medium in 2004
Background information
Origin Nottingham, England
Genres Dance-punk
Post-punk
Funk
Years active 1978 (1978)1983, 2004
Labels Cherry Red Records
Associated acts C Cat Trance
Website http://www.mediummedium.com
Members John Rees Lewis
Alan Turton
Andy Ryder
Steve Harvey
Past members Nigel Stone
Graham Spink
Leslie Joachim Barrett
Julie Wood

Medium Medium was a post-punk band from Nottingham, England, initially active between 1978 and 1983.

Post-punk is a broad type of rock music that emerged from the punk movement of the 1970s, in which artists departed from the simplicity and traditionalism of punk rock to adopt a variety of avant-garde sensibilities and diverse influences. Inspired by punk's energy and DIY ethic but determined to break from rock cliches, artists experimented with sources including electronic music and black styles like dub, funk, free jazz, and disco; novel recording and production techniques; and ideas from art and politics, including critical theory, modernist art, cinema and literature. Communities that produced independent record labels, visual art, multimedia performances and fanzines developed around these pioneering musical scenes, which coalesced in cities such as London, New York, Manchester, Melbourne, Sydney, and San Francisco.

Nottingham City and unitary authority area in England

Nottingham is a city and unitary authority area in Nottinghamshire, England, 128 miles (206 km) north of London, 45 miles (72 km) northeast of Birmingham and 56 miles (90 km) southeast of Manchester, in the East Midlands.

Contents

History

Emerging in 1978 out of the Nottingham punk/rhythm & blues band The Press, [1] Medium Medium's first single was "Them or Me", which was released in late 1978 and was still selling well enough in 1980 to appear in the UK Independent Chart. [2] [3] The second single, "Hungry, So Angry", was released in February 1981 on Cherry Red Records. One of the first records to introduce slap bass - a technique borrowed from black funk music - to a generally white audience, "Hungry, So Angry" reached #48 in the Billboard Disco chart - the single and the album were released in 1981 on the New York-based indie label Cachalot Records - and has appeared on over a dozen compilations over the years.

Punk rock is a rock music genre that developed in the mid-1970s in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada and Australia. Rooted in 1960s garage rock and other forms of what is now known as "proto-punk" music, punk rock bands rejected perceived excesses of mainstream 1970s rock. They typically produced short, fast-paced songs with hard-edged melodies and singing styles, stripped-down instrumentation, and often political, anti-establishment lyrics. Punk embraces a DIY ethic; many bands self-produce recordings and distribute them through independent record labels and other informal channels.

Cherry Red Records is a British independent record label founded by Iain McNay in 1978. The label has released recordings by Dead Kennedys, Everything But the Girl, The Monochrome Set, and Felt, among others, as well as the compilation album Pillows & Prayers. In addition to releasing new music, Cherry Red also acts as an umbrella for individual imprints and catalogue specialists.

<i>Billboard</i> (magazine) American music magazine

Billboard is an American entertainment media brand owned by the Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group, a division of Eldridge Industries. It publishes pieces involving news, video, opinion, reviews, events, and style, and is also known for its music charts, including the Hot 100 and Billboard 200, tracking the most popular songs and albums in different genres. It also hosts events, owns a publishing firm, and operates several TV shows.

The band released one studio album, The Glitterhouse, in late 1981. Its stark, stripped-down dub and dance rhythms and chiming, funk guitar with occasional saxophone and other sounds, failed to attract a large following.

John Rees Lewis, the lead singer and saxophone player, left at the start of 1982 to form C Cat Trance with the original drummer Nigel Stone, who had left shortly before the release of "Hungry, So Angry". The remaining members, Andy Ryder (guitar/vocals), Alan Turton (bass guitar), Graham Spink (offstage special sounds) and the replacement drummer Steve Harvey, continued to tour and were later augmented by, first, Leslie Joachim Barrett (guitar/keyboards), then Julie Wood (keyboards). Forays into a fuller, more produced sound failed to earn the band a new record deal and Medium Medium split up in late 1983.

C Cat Trance were a post-punk band from Nottingham, England, formed by John Rees Lewis after his departure from Medium Medium. They released five albums before splitting up in the mid-1990s.

Inspired by a Cherry Red retrospective CD release in 2001 and the subsequent dance-punk revival, Medium Medium reformed in late 2004 for several live shows, including a showcase at the CMJ Music Marathon in New York. No longer a full-time venture, the band has stated plans to continue to write, record and perform.

Dance-punk is a music genre that emerged in the late 1970s, and is closely associated with the post-punk and new wave movements.

CMJ Holdings, Corp. was a music events and online media company which ran a website, hosted an annual festival in New York City, and published CMJ New Music Monthly.

In 2010, Medium Medium released a split-LP with Kommissar Hjuler on the German label Der Schoene-Hjuler-Memorial-Fond, containing tracks from their concert at Part Time Punks Festival USA, followed by a second split-LP in 2011.

Kommissar Hjuler works as a sound recordist in the field of Noise and Post-industrial music, visual artist, film maker and police officer at Flensburg, a town on the German border with Denmark. He often works together with his wife Mama Baer as Kommissar Hjuler und Frau. As self-taught artist he began making music in 1999 and visual art in 2006. He is considered to work in the field of neo dada, whereas his output also contains elements of fluxus, art brut.

The band's "The Glitterhouse" was reissued in expanded form as a triple vinyl edition in 2016 by Optic Nerve Recordings.

Discography

Albums

<i>The Glitterhouse</i> 1981 studio album by Medium Medium

The Glitterhouse is the sole studio album by English post-punk band Medium Medium, was released in 1981 by record label Cherry Red.

Clayton Patterson is a Canadian-born artist, photographer, videographer and folk historian. Since moving to New York City in 1979, his work has focused almost exclusively on documenting the art, life and times of the Lower East Side in Manhattan.

Singles

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References

  1. Unterberger, Richie "Medium Medium Biography", Allmusic, retrieved 2 October 2010
  2. Strong, Martin C. (2003) The Great Indie Discography, Canongate, ISBN   1-84195-335-0, p. 257
  3. Lazell, Barry (1998) Indie Hits 1980-1989, Cherry Red Books, ISBN   0-9517206-9-4, p. 145

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