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Best of 2016

This Heat


Label: Modern Classics Recordings

Format: LP

Out of stock

Repressed, second edition. Another essential reissue, This Heat’s classic Deceit completes an official trilogy of vinyl reissues from their seminal and hugely influential run of late ‘70s/early ‘80s recordings which set the template for so, so much avant-rock, noise and experimental music ever since. With their debut album and follow-up maxi single Health and Efficiency, This Heat sowed the seeds of post-punk, avant rock, noise rock and post-rock, placing the trio -- Charles Bullen, Charles Hayward and Gareth Williams -- at the forefront of experimental music. However, 1981's Deceit is the one that truly deserves its reputation as a classic of the post-punk era, tying up the myriad threads of their work so far and adding accessibility and melody to the still furiously forward-thinking sound. Recorded in a variety of studios including the band's own Cold Storage, the 11 tracks put a sense of social anxiety and global paranoia to the fore. Some lyrics were 'harvested' from TV commercials ('Sleep'), others described the curtain-twitching of surveillance society ('Triumph'), and some were screamed with raw, ragged abandon, like on 'Makeshift Swahili'. 'Makeshift was a big learning situation for me,' says Hayward. 'I learned to let go with my voice, to release the energy that each song required, no matter where that might lead. The song, about the collapse of language, was central to the Deceit idea.' Musical innovations abound too -- drum tracks were recycled from other recordings, albeit in manipulated and mutated form, and 'Independence' reverses the melody of earlier track 'Fall Of Saigon'. It's an album whose themes and sounds unfurl before the listener, the mood of edgy, pre-apocalyptic tension growing throughout.

Says Hayward: 'I still think of this record as a dream within a dream.' This Heat split a year after the release, with Bullen and Hayward completing the final tour without Williams. Hayward went on to form Camberwell Now and Bullen recorded as Lifetones. A tentative 2001 reunion came, tragically, too late -- Williams died of cancer within a month of them meeting to rehearse."

Cat. number: MCR 917
Year: 2016
  • Second pressing
  • First official vinyl re-issue in collaboration with original band members Charles Bullen and Charles Hayward
  • 24 bit/96 kHz re-master from original analog tapes
  • Housed in a Stoughton “tip-on” jacket
  • Includes booklet with track notes and archival photos
  • Bundle of both This Heat Self-Titled and Deceit LPs available.