bad words, blanked out or bleeped
this time they're playing for keeps


Singer's Hampstead Home, High And Dry, Send Herman Home, Ambulance For One, Soul Boy, Back To The Old House, United Colours, Gale Force Wind, Herr Direktor, Bluerings.

Microdisney's final LP. The songs may not all be as strong as on the previous LP, 'Crooked Mile', but production and presentation makes for a more well rounded recording. The music on this record had come a long way from the music of five years earlier with a much harder sound entirely at one with the vocals and subject matter. Previously barely noticed drums were now bashing out rage as unconcealed anger scaled new heights of bitterness. Despite the added aggression, keyboards and guitars kept the LP tuneful (even foot-tapping) but, unlike the last LP, were no longer going off on their own private adventure.

The focus had moved on from the political issues contained in 'Crooked Mile' and were now directed at the manufactured superficiality that was responsible for a climate in which those issues were no longer of interest. Political thought had become unfashionable, blandness was being promoted as art, and the punters fucked politics and danced. The Yuppie society had even managed to claim rebellion and pseudo 'awareness' for itself as it absolved people from feeling shame at their undeserved gains. It was now OK to be rich just so long as you weren't square. 'Never Mind The Bollocks' became a compulsory yuppie posession. Revolution and controversy was Kylie snogging Geri.

The LP also reflected Microdisney's own situation and experiences as they found themselves in direct conflict with the bland formula that guaranteed success. 'Dumbing down' may have been in its infancy, but Microdisney had seen it coming a mile off.

he only had blank lines to say
but he said them in a witty and stylish way

The two singles, 'Hampstead Home' and 'Gale Force Wind' are without doubt the best songs on this record, although 'United Colours' (of brainrot) comes very close. 'United Colours' was a scathing attack on the Benetton ads that said nothing but managed to portray an image of deep, worldly knowledge and togetherness. Advertising had become an apologist for the society in which it thrived. No longer just selling a product it was selling a consumerist lifestyle that still pretended to care.

Many of the songs on the LP deal with the different faces of 'dumbing down'. 'United Colours' aimed at the advertising industry, 'Herr Direktor' the film industry. 'Hampstead Home' and 'Soul boy' do likewise to the music industry, although 'Soul Boy' is a much more obscure offering.

'Herr Direktor', as with 'Hampstead Home' sees an 'artist' (actress) willing to make any form of compromise necessary to become famous. It describes a film industry that is locked into a predictable and uncreative formula guaranteed to make money- those vacuuous souls still having the nerve to lord it over their more worthy counterparts.

i haven't come through this misery
for some art school snob to look down on me

'Soul Boy' is much more difficult to follow. 'Marvin Gaye has gone away' and 'Soul boy has gone to war' are sung in a resigned manner but many of the references are lost on me.

'Ambulance for One' is an unbeatable song for the seriously frustrated and copies the suicidal theme of 'Birthday Girl' in a less than subtle manner.

ambulance for one, i've had all i can take
what a groovy shape her thighs make

'Send Herman Home' reverts back to direct politics. Covering the South African situation, it's a direct attack on the financial interests that allow them to defend the indefensible.

we've got a job for churchill, nelson and good old ch-ch-chester clark,
to show the white men's bite is fiercer than the blackest bark,
here comes order, with all the buckshot and british gas,
strictly business, spill the blood, first and always.

The LP ends on a high with the very much overlooked 'Bluerings', a quiet melodic piece reminiscent of 'And' on the 'Clock Comes Down The Stairs'. Rather like a Vegas entertainer bringing things down after a hectic show, it's a soft, slightly melancholic finish. But unlike Vegas it has a sting in the tail with barely disguised insults hiding behind a gentle and evocative piece of music.

bluerings don't go to town
i'm your enemy now

Not since the first LP had the production been so good. A record that finally combined all the aspects of Microdisney into one powerful set of songs. It remains one of their finest releases and it was obvious at the time that if this couldn't succeed then nothing would.