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Old 03-17-2011, 09:34 AM   #1 (permalink)
Melancholia Eternally
 
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Default The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster



Today I heard news that saddened me and so searched for the Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster thread to share a link, only to find that there wasn't one. There were only two threads for specific releases from the band. This will not do.



For those who do not know them, the Eighties Matchbox are a Brighton-based psychobilly band with three full length albums. 2002s spectacular Horse of the Dog, 2004s The Royal Society and last years Blood & Fire. Or should I say, they were as they have seemingly decided to call it quits.

Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster Call It a Day | Altsounds.com News







I'm now more glad than I ever have been to have been fortunate enough to see them tour each album. Genuinely a fantastic, loud, energetic live band.

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Old 03-17-2011, 11:33 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Genuinely bummed out over this. Like you, I've had the pleasure of seeing them live on multiple occasions, I remember one gig at a London club called Madame Jojo's about 4 years ago, it was possibly the most intense live experience I've ever been a part of. They were an amazing live band.

To the albums: I think both Horse of the Dog and Royal Society are brilliant, and I appreciate the clear progression from one album to the next. Blood & Fire was OK, it had some standout moments but half the album consisted of tracks that had been floating aound for years, so it didnt have that impact on me like their previous releasses. The In the Garden EP was pretty good too.

All in all, I think maybe now is the time for them to call it quits. They leave behind a pretty strong trio of albums and will go on to be distinguished as a band that, in their heyday, were doing something a little off the beaten track compared to a lot of the dirge coming out of Britian in the early to mid 00's. Still saddens me though, I will miss them.
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:41 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Well, I can understand the logic behind you thinking that it may be time to call it quits. Truth is nobody really knows what they have left in the tank apart from them and over the last few years they had to suffer through guitarists coming and going and having to rebuild. However, unlike you I feel that Blood & Fire was stronger than The Royal Society. I liked the In The Garden EP but it wasn't quite up to scratch for me, so when they turned out a full length album that I loved to pieces I was very happy and had hoped that they were gonna follow it up.

Since making this thread, I have realised that I actually didn't see them tour The Royal Society. It feels as though I did because I saw them tour Blood & Fire but they did that tour not long before the recording of that album with their new guitarist. I think it may have only been a year before it. I saw them on that one too, as well as supporing System of a Down playing stuff from Horse of the Dog.

The live video I posted shows what an intense band they were on stage. I will fondly remember their frontman climbing all over The Cluny in Newcastle to throw himself into the pit.
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:52 AM   #4 (permalink)
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The Royal Society is my favourite. It just has a greater diversity and experimentalism to it than the other two, with a few warped pop gems such as Rise of the Eagles and Mister Mental thrown in too. I dont dislike anything they've done though, B&F is my least favourite because to me it was just a little formulaic. Horse of the Dog is a very important album to me because it opened whole new avenues of music to me.

I never cauight them on the B&F tour. In total I saw them three times, mostly around the Royal Society years... which may be another reason why I hold it in such high esteem.

Man I remember when they went into Giant Bones the first time I saw them, Those two minutes knocked my socks off.
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Old 03-17-2011, 11:58 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Oh that album is definitely their most diverse, The Royal Society that is. I don't know, in places it doesn't quite work for me but, like you, I don't dislike anything they have done. I think it's still a great album.

Horse of the Dog was important to me too, for similar reasons. I went to my first gig in 2001 when I was 17 and still strictly very mainstream indie. That album was 2002 and came around during the time I was starting to branch out into heavier music. I wasn't really listening to much stuff that was as aggressive as that album when it first came out.
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Old 03-17-2011, 01:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I remember I had bad insomnia one night back in 02 so I stayed up late watching MTV. Back then, they still showed some decent music videos really late at night. I was half asleep and Psychosis Safari came on...it was such a badass song that I went and bought the album the next day. Been a fan ever since.

Honestly, I'm not surprised they broke up and they wait so long between releases that 3 solid albums sounds about right. I actually didn't like the change from Horse of the Dog to Royal Society at first, but now I have a hard time deciding between those two albums when I want some 80's Matchbox action.

Hands down the quintessential psychobilly band.
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Old 03-17-2011, 05:05 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I disagree somewhat with the pyschobilly tag. Horse of the Dog, granted, was heavily influenced by it, but from RS onwards they moved away from that sound to the extent that, with exception to the odd song, you cannot really see any psycobilly in their music. I heard them once described as Psychosis Rock, and I always liked that description - regardless of the pointless nature of it.
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Old 03-18-2011, 09:50 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duga View Post
I remember I had bad insomnia one night back in 02 so I stayed up late watching MTV. Back then, they still showed some decent music videos really late at night. I was half asleep and Psychosis Safari came on...it was such a badass song that I went and bought the album the next day. Been a fan ever since.
I'm much the same actually. I can't remember which video I saw first, Psychosis Safari or Celebrate Your Mother, but it was late-night on MTV2 and that the first time I heard the band.

Also, didn't they label themselves as psychosis-rock? It fits though, either way. And I only use the psychobilly tag because I really don't know what to classify them as.
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Old 03-18-2011, 10:09 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mojopinuk View Post

Also, didn't they label themselves as psychosis-rock? It fits though, either way. And I only use the psychobilly tag because I really don't know what to classify them as.
Possibly, as you say, either way it sums the music up quite succinctly.
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Old 03-18-2011, 10:21 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I can see why they wouldn't call themselves psychobilly. Honestly, it's more of a personal preference for me. Other psychobilly bands usually end up devolving into so much self parody that the kitschiness of it just wears off. Not to mention hearing the same reverbed guitar arpeggios and surfer drums gets old, too. In my head, 80's Matchbox are what psychobilly should sound like to me (even when they change their sound). I guess it's the attitude more than anything.
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