elcome to the Digital Meltd0wn Music Blog. The aim of this blog is to introduce the readers to music that is out of print, commercially unavailable, released under a creative commons license, or with approval by the featured artist. The majority of the music posted here would be considered underground. Don't let that fool you into thinking that the music featured here might be any less enjoyable than that of the mainstream artists you hear on the radio, as this couldn't be further from the truth.
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Some of you may remember that I closed out November with several dark library music selections. During the next couple of weeks I plan to return to sharing library music, but rather than strictly focusing on a specific mood or theme, I would like to share a diverse selection this time around. First up is a compilation entitled "Pulse of Events", released by the severely underrated Themes International library as TIM 1023 in 1976. I have a couple of reasons for posting this compilation. The first and most obvious reason is that this compilation is one of the most solid and beat-heavy library music albums that I have ever had the pleasure of listening to. The rather dull cover is certainly deceiving, as the vinyl it houses contains some real scorchers. The second reason I wanted to share this is so that I can direct your attention to a blogger that is relatively new to the scene, and off to a tremendous start. I remember when I first started blogging I was given a big push by a blogger who had been around for years. RYP from the legendary Twilightzone! blog introduced a great deal of people to my blog, who most likely never would have paid it a visit otherwise. Hopefully now that I've been blogging for nearly five years, I can give a similar push to others who are somewhat new to the music blogging scene. Pulse of Events was originally ripped by "Marsellus Wallace" and shared on his extraordinary blog Marcellus Wallace's Crate Favorites. Mr. Wallace recently shared several Themes International rips over on his blog to kick off the new year. Be sure to dig through the archives while you're there for more library music goodness.
The compilation opens up with three outstanding tracks by Alan Hawkshaw, each of which are suspenseful jazz-rock numbers, often heavy on the bass and brass, and with what sounds to be some amazing synth/keyboard and piano work as well. Hawkshaw is followed by Mike Moran, who delivers two solid funk-rock tracks. "Task Force" opens up with a hip-hop beat shortly before the brass, percussion and funky guitar work take over. "Situation Unstable" begins where the previous track left off, yet takes the track in a more rock oriented direction toward the latter half without losing its funky edge. Next up is David Lindup and "CCX", a laid-back and light rocking groover, which leans toward the funky side at times also, featuring some nice fuzzy guitar work, piano, and powerful bursts of brass. While "Inside Information" contains one of the hard and heaviest riffs on the whole compilation, it is very fun and soulful track at the core, featuring plenty of hammond organ and some light guitar thrown in for good measure. The next four tracks come courtesy of Alan Parker, perhaps best known for his work on "Afro Rock" on the legendary KPM label (KPM 1130). While each of these tracks is solid in their own right, they are outshadowed by the monstrous "Hard Line", a real hard rocking scorcher with some seriously fuzzy guitar licks that are nothing short of Bad Ass. Closing out the album are a couple of tracks by Les Hurdle and Alan Tew respectively. Hurdle's "Offbeat" is another laid-back funky groover with the emphasis on the beat. Alan Tew closes out the album with "The Come On", a solid track that is a bit dynamic in nature. It has a bit of a crime jazz feel to it at the onset, but continuously evolves throughout. Driving strings, a deliciously funky bassline and weird spaced out sounds can be heard throughout. My favorite part of the track is the introduction of the piano near the end of the track, which closes it out with a bit of ragtime flavor.
As far as library music goes, this compilation is very accessible and would serve as a great introduction for the uninitiated. I really can't recommend this compilation enough. As I mentioned before, Themes International is a criminally underrated label. Labels such as KPM often get the majority of attention from collectors, while labels such as Themes International manage to fly under the radar despite releasing a number of amazing releases. A couple of the performers are even well known for being KPM regulars. If you happen to stumble across any releases by Themes International on other blogs in the future, go ahead and do yourself a favor and download them. Chances are you will be glad that you did. If you enjoy this gem, then I'm sure you will enjoy the various other Themes International library LPs that Marcellus Wallace has made available on his blog also.
Year of Release: 1976 Label: Themes International Catalog #: TIM 1023 Bitrate: 320kbps
Track List: A1. Alan Hawkshaw - Troublemaker A2. Alan Hawkshaw - The Hunted A3. Alan Hawkshaw - The Investigator A4. Mike Moran - Task Force A5. Mike Moran - Situation Unstable A6. David Lindup - CCX A7. David Lindup - Inside Information B1. Alan Parker - Move B2. Alan Parker - Counter Move B3. Alan Parker - Mustang B4. Alan Parker - Hard Line B5. Alan Parker - Stake Out B6. Les Hurdle - Offbeat B7. Alan Tew - The Come On