Swell Maps
Trip to Marineville (1979)

Song: "Midget Submarines"
lyrics | sound clip (Falkner version) | sound clip (Swell Maps version)


1. H.S. Art (Sudden/Sudden)
2. Another Song
3. Vertical Slum
4. Spitfire Parade
5. Harmony in Your Bathroom
6. Don't Throw Ashtrays at Me!
7. Midget Submarines
8. Bridge Head, Pt. 9
9. Full Moon in My Pocket
10. Blam!!
11. Full Moon (Reprise)
12. Gunboats
13. Adventuring into Basketry
14. My Little Shops
15. Ripped & Torn
16. International Rescue
17. Loin of the Surf
18. Shoot the Angels
19. Elephant Flowers (No. 2)
20. Turn Me on Dead Man
21. Bronze and Baby Shoes
22. Nevertoseeanyotherway

Mini - Bio:

Noisy and experimental, Britain's Swell Maps experienced little commercial success during the course of their chaotic career, but in hindsight they stand as one of the pivotal acts of the New Wave: not only was the group an acknowedged inspiration to the likes of Sonic Youth and Pavement, but their alumni -- most notably brothers Nikki Sudden and Epic Soundtracks -- continued on as key players in the underground music community.

Although Sudden (vocals/guitar) and Soundtracks (piano/drums) formed the first incarnation of the Swell Maps (named after the charts used by surfers to gauge wave intensities) as far back as 1972, the group did not begin to truly take shape until 1976, when the siblings enlisted bassist Jowe Head and guitarist Richard Earl. In the spirit of punk's "do-it-yourself" mentality, they formed their own label, Rather Records, and issued their debut single -- the brief, jarring "Read About Seymour" -- in the early weeks of 1978. Local media support soon won the group a distribution pact with Rough Trade, but they did not resurface until over a year later with the single "Dresden Style."

In mid-1979, the Swell Maps released their full-length debut A Trip to Marineville, a crazy-quilt of punk energy and Krautrock-influenced clatter. After the release of the speaker-shredding single "Let's Build a Car," the group recorded one final studio LP, The Swell Maps in 'Jane from Occupied Europe', before breaking up. A series of outtakes and singles collections -- 1981's Whatever Happens Next..., 1982's Collision Time, and 1987's Train Out of It -- followed, while the members followed their own career paths: Sudden formed the Jacobites, Soundtracks joined Crime and the City Solution, and Head played with the Television Personalities. All later enjoyed solo careers as well.

- by Jason Ankeny, All Music Guide
1999 AEC One Stop Group, Inc.

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