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may 2 2006
I want to go back home
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back home
version française

various artists "PASSE-TEMPS : La nostalgie du futur", Vivonzeureux! Records, 2006

various artists :
PASSE-TEMPS : La nostalgie du futur
(Pastime : A nostalgia for the future)

collection : "Not available"
ref : not available 013
release date : may 2 2006

Credits :
Compiled by JC Brochard on july 3 1981.
Bonus tracks and liner notes: JC Brochard, april 2006
Cover photo : JC Brochard Attic of 39 rue des Martyrs de la Résistance in Châlons-sur-Marne, toward 1980-1981).

 

Face A

1. THE HUMAN LEAGUE : Morale
From "Reproduction" (Virgin, 1979)

"Donít talk Close the door Youíve been here before
Your shape dimIím an old man now
The airís thin The walls very damp now
And if I donít go Iíll always be stuck here in this poor little room With a view of the corner
I donít forget The light growing weak now Experience is useless Unless you can learn
And Iíve never met anyone Who used their knowledge To avoid those mistakes made again and again

2. DELTA FIVE : Mind your own business
From "Wanna buy a bridge ?" (Rough Trade US, 1980)
"Can I interfere in your crisis ? No, mind your own business"
Plus d'infos

3. THE CLASH : Charlie don't surf
From "Sandinista" (CBS, 1980)

4. FAD GADGET : The box
Single (Mute, 1979)
" Let me out... Let me out... Let me out... I can't stand the dark anymore"

5. THE SPECIALS : International jet set
From "Specials plus" (2 Tone, 1981)
"The business men are having fun Are they on a different plane to me
I've lost touch with reality They all seem so absurd to me
Like well dressed chimpanzees
Spend and spend and spend and spend
Will the muzak never end"

6. JOY DIVISION : Decades
From "Closer" (Factory, 1980)
"Here are the young men, a weight on their shoulders
Here are the young men, well where have they been ?"

7. THE CURE : The drowning man
From "Faith" (Fiction, 1981)


Face B

8. THE HUMAN LEAGUE : Morale
From "Reproduction" (Virgin, 1979)

9. ECHO & THE BUNNYMEN : All my colours
From "Heaven up here" (Korova, 1981)

10. THE HUMAN LEAGUE : WXJL tonight
From "Travelogue" (Virgin, 1980)
"And twenty years ago No one seemed to care
The people must have known The DJ's role was only there
To fill in space between the songs That talk of love and other things As if they didn't matter
Automatic stations came And sent them all away
And now I'm left alone I haven't got a word to say
And you're the one who makes the choice To turn me on or turn me off But now it really matters"

11. KRAFTWERK : Hall of mirrors
From "Trans Europe Express" (Capitol, 1977)
"The young man stepped into the hall of mirrors
Where he discovered a reflection of himself
Even the greatest stars discover themselves in the looking glass"

12. TALKING HEADS : Listening wind
From "Remain in light" (Sire, 1980)

13. THE MONOCHROME SET : In love, cancer ?
From "Love zombies" (Dindisc, 1980)

14. SIOUXSIE & THE BANSHEES : Red light
From "Kaleidoscope" (Polydor, 1980)

15. YOUNG MARBLE GIANTS : Final day
Single (Rough Trade, 1980)
"There is so much noise There is too much heat
And the living floor Throws you off your feet
As the final day falls into the night There is peace outside In the narrow light"

divers artistes "PASSE-TEMPS : La nostalgie du futur", Vivonzeureux! Records, 2006

Bonus
Certains de ces bonus ont pu être publiés initialement après la date d'enregistrement de la cassette originale. ils ont été choisis parce qu'ils complètent utilement la cassette originale, pas par souci de rigueur historique.

16. BUZZCOCKS : Nostalgia
From "Love bites" (United Artists, 1978)
I always used to dream of the past But like they say yesterday never comes
Sometimes there's a song in my brain And I feel that my heart knows the refrain
I guess it's just the music that brings on nostalgia for an age yet to come
(...)
About the future I only can reminisce For what I've had is what I'll never get
And although this may sound strange My future and my past are presently disarranged
And I'm surfing on a wave of nostalgia for an age yet to come

16. NEW ORDER : Ceremony
Single (Factory, 1981)
"This is why events unnerve me Define it all, a different story (...)
I've heard them all, no mercy shown Heaven knows, it's got to be this time"

17. THE STRANGLERS : Thrown away
From "The gospel according to the meninblack" (Liberty, 1981)
"You know we tried, time wasn't on our side
Then there came the day, we threw it all away"

18. TAXI GIRL : Jardin chinois
Single " (Pathé Marconi EMI, 1981)
"Je te tuerai, je te tuerai lentement
Le temps est si lent, pourquoi nous presser ?"

Plus d'infos

19. POLYPHONIC SIZE : Winston et Julia
From "Vivre pour chaque instant" (New Rose, 1980)
"But Winston and Julia want to have a good time
The best years of their lives, in this world of no-no-no"

20. THE TEARDROP EXPLODES : Tiny children
From "Wilder" (Mercury, 1981)
Oh I could make a meal Of that wonderful despair I feel
But waking up I turn and face the wall (...)
And confidence is valued in these days
But each character Is plundering my home And taking everything that is my own
Oh no, Iím not sure about Those things that I care about Oh no, Iím not sure, not any more...

21. MAGAZINE: Twenty years ago
B side of single A song from under the floorboards" (Virgin, 1980)
"Twenty years ago I used your soap So what ! You've got a name for it
Yesterday goes on and on (...) You thrash about in your room
No space for thought Look no strings, look no strings
No visible means of support"


1981
You are the product of your time. I didn't grow up with the mania of the sixties, the utopia of the hippies, the rage of punks or the hedonism of house. I didn't care for heavy metal, contrary to 80 % of the people around me. Early in July 1981, expecting my A level results within a few days, and before going out to the Exhibition Hall for the big party held to mark the end of the exam period, here's what I was listening to, in the days of new wave, that some were starting to call cold wave.
The cassette compilations that I made for years mainly served to keep track of my favourite songs at any one time and to listen to them in a convenient way, even before I had a car. The track listing could sometime be thematic, but the newness of the records in my collection was the prevailing factor. Which can explain why you find The Specials here, a little lost in a rather dark atmosphere. Talking Heads had recently evolved in a new direction, but "Listening wind" is maybe the less "ethnic" track on "Remain in light". Anyway, even if it's a rather somber new wave that dominates the cassette, it is in no way all-pervasive since, along with The Specials and Talking Heads, you can also hear The Clash with the "Sandinista !" song that references "Apocalypse now" and the closing track on Monochrome Set's "Love zombies"
, which is in no way synthetic.
If there is a song in the lot that is the source for the theme and general tone of the cassette, it is "WXJL tonight" by The Human League (though the lyrics for The Buzzcocks' "Nostalgia", featured in the bonus tracks, could have done the trick). The title, "La nostalgie du futur",I found it by myself, even if I thought it probable at the time that someone had coined this expression before me, but it was probably suggested to me by the lyrics to "WXJL tonight". The song tells the story of a radio DJ in the future (twenty years from 1981...) addressing his listeners, or precisely the last of his listeners, asking him not to turn off the radio, because it would mean the end of the station, and the end of himself. Nobody anymore listens to the DJs talking about the songs, and they are being replaced by automatic stations.
In the "Travelogue" album, there were other striking songs, like "Life kills", which proves that music can also act like a metaphysics handbook; and strongly influence a sensitive mind ("Life kills" could also be linked directly to the name of the site that hosts this text...).

2006
At a time when the playlisting of proper radio stations is entirely enslaved to computer programs deciding the order of the calibrated songs and pieces of news according to a number of criteria. At a time especially that sees the development of internet radios, podcasts and radio-blogs, all you can say is that the future is now and that today, "WXJL tonight" is a not a futurico-nostalgic song, but truly and properly a song of our time.
In the last two years, young bands have formed and found success, sometime by reproducing note for note the music of bands from 1981.The bands from the past take this opportunity to reform or go on tour.
All of the titles featured on the original compilation are available for sale today (including the most "obscure" one, "Mind your own business" by Delta 5, thanks to a recent reissue by Kill Rock Stars in the United States), and that's a good thing.
The most eagerly anticipated music film of the year in England us the Ian Curtis biopic, to which New Order will contribute new music.
Time has passed. My cassette is unlistenable (it stayed for several years in an attic with abrupt differences of temperature), but I still own the records that were used to make it.
Time has passed, and music is still a pastime for me, one of the art forms for which duration is the most important. A record remains a slice of time that you can't speed up, and it can also be a nostalgia capsule which, everytime you play it, sends you back as an echo to the time of one of your previous plays.

PS : Ten minutes after I finished typing this text, I received a spam with "Like 20 years ago" as subject. I don't believe in telepathy, and I had no illusion, but still I checked and, as I thought it would be, this email was not about new wave, but abourt Viagra...

J.-C. Brochard, 30 avril 2006.