Since September 2010, this blog has recorded the journey of this middle-aged man as I attempt to listen to all the music in my CD collection. CDs revisited in their entirety from start to finish - no skipping tracks, no shuffle. CDs only - no vinyl, no tapes, no downloads. And just as CD technology (and the album format itself) becomes obsolete. I'm no music critic, just a music junkie with too much time on my hands.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Heaven 17 - Penthouse and Pavement (1981)


Heaven 17 is a not-so-subtle mix of electronic funk and synthpop. I loved this group and tried to get my high school friends to listen to them to no avail. They would give the group a listen and say it wasn't for them. They were too busy listening to Journey and Styx, I guess. So I listened to the group all by my lonesome. The group got its name from the novel A Clockwork Orange, in which 'The Heaven Seventeen' are at number 4 in the charts with "Inside." This was their debut release, recorded not long after two band members had left The Human League. A good effort, but not as good as the group's second album, 1983's The Luxury Gap. Curiously, this album is featured in the 2005 book, 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die. I guess because it was groundbreaking for its time, along with The Human League's Dare or Kraftwerk's The Man-Machine.

Tracks: (We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang is a classic and will appear numerous times in this blog by the time its all over. Other favorites are the title track and Play to Win. Soul Warfare isn't the band's best effort, despite it's killer funk bass solo. Also, Let's Make A Bomb and Song With No Name are just average.

Extra tracks: this 1997 reissue contains extended mixes of I'm Your Money and Play to Win which I already had on another CD, so whatever.

Personal Memory Associated with this CD: I had the original US issue of this album on cassette which was self-titled and had different tracks. The cover is below. I don't know why the record companies would do that. Anyway, I would listen to my cassette full blast in the Markmobile and get funny looks from old people.  It's one of the few prerecorded cassettes I've kept.

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