180gr black vinyl version Entirely a category of their own, fifteen years after the untimely passing of John Balance and the project’s demise, it remains impossible to calculate the importance of Coil. For just over two decades, following the band’s founding by Balance in 1983, it stood among the great emblems of underground music - a full realisation of the seeds and potential planted by punk, bred with the higher realms of experimental and electronic music. Their sprawling, deeply emotive catalog of recordings is journey through time, evolving ideas, and remarkable interactions of sound. Over the last few years we’ve witnessed a slow trickle of vinyl reissues focused on Coil’s seminal albums, but this time we have a rare treat - the never before released soundtrack, finally coming to light in the hands of the Swiss imprint Musique Pour La Danse, created by the band for the 1992 safe sex instructional documentary, The Gay Man's Guide To Safer Sex. Incredible as a freestanding body of sound, the long awaited release of this lost artifact has been a daydream of Coil fans for years, doubling as an important window into the social concerns of the band during these crucial years, making it just about as important as archival releases come.
Coil began in 1983 as a solo project for John Balance, becoming fully realized when he was joined by fellow Psychic TV member, Peter 'Sleazy' Christopherson (of Throbbing Gristle fame) the following year. Over the decades, the two, with a cast of others, continuously push into uncharted realms, becoming almost genre unto their own. Often associated with the darker sides of pop musical consciousness, Coil never truly fell within easy definition of category. Always creatively ambitious, filled with chance, experimentalism, and the spirit of the avant-garde - darting from one direction and idea to the next, no one record could fully capture the totality of their scope. If there was ever an object which is emblematic of Coil’s breadth and unwillingness to be nailed down, it could easily be their soundtrack for David Lewis’ documentary, The Gay Man's Guide To Safer Sex. A lost artifact, produced at the height of the HIV epidemic, of the VHS only, pre-internet world, its original 3 tracks - expanded by 3 more for this LP, realized by the line up of John Balance, Peter “Sleazy” Christopherson, and Danny Hyde. The totality, in Balances’ own words “is [a] slightly new age-y, progressive house type thing”, encountering the spirit of the Coil in a body of sounds which will likely defy the expectation of most fans.
A deep, moody yet somehow celebratory assembly of balearic beats buried in etherial melodic lines, it consciously flirts around the out edges of kitsch and ambient house, presenting a slow dance for the ear. Taken from the original masters provided by Danny Hyde, this, the first ever official release of The Gay Man’s Guide To Safer Sex features a new edit of the main theme, expanded even further Bonus tracks “Nasa-Arab” and “Omlagus Garfungiloops” taken from the 1992 CD-only release Stolen And Contaminated Songs - both being original versions of the radically reworked (for the soundtrack) “Nasa-Arab 2” and “Exploding Frogs” in order to balance the whole album and extend the listening pleasure. Beautiful and essential for any fan of Coil, Psychic TV, industrial music at large, queer history, or of new age, and progressive and ambient house.
A truly historically significant release, produced with love and care by Musique Pour La Danse. We can’t recommend this one enough. If you know how serious Coil fans are, you know that this one won’t be sitting around for long.