There seems to be a fresh glut of DIY/cold-wave/industrial comps springing up of late, perhaps because labels are finally realising (or remembering) that just because some c**t from Belgium or Basildon did one or two good songs, doesn’t mean they should have their entire back catalogue reissued on heavyweight vinyl in sleeves made of gold. The comp, now as then, is the best way to experience and digest this occasionally genius but more often forgettable music, and this double-LP offering from Glasgow’s Contort Yourself is packed primarily – more than most - with stuff from the former category, favouring especially the sort sort of gloomy, atmospheric and subtly dubbed-out material that would’ve fitted snugly on an early Raime or Blackest Ever Black mix. While Merzbow, Nocturnal Emissions, Human Flesh, and Doxa Sinistra’s glorious anomaly ‘The Other Stranger’ all feature, for the most part this stuff is new to us: special mention to East End Butcher’s ‘Assassins’ (like Mark Perry’s Snappy Turns
, only…more so). This sort of music has become so trendy and, in a weird way, commonplace, that it’s easy to forget how vital it is. 80s Underground Cassette Culture
is a resounding and well-timed reminder that, when it comes to the crunch, there’s nothing better.