The Comsat Angels

To Before

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Comsats aficionados have slobbered over rumors of unreleased songs and outtakes for 25 years, and To Before is a sampling of that manna. Singer/guitarist Stephen Fellows seems surprised at the results, noting, "I'd not heard some of this since we did it." Disc one is the early period, with original version demos (some reworked later, like "The House That..."), a rare debut single, and genius finds like "Work" and "Time to Burn." (Sadly, still no sign of the three other radically different versions of "Ju Ju Money" out there, somewhere!) Disc two mostly emanates from that synth pop period between 1982's fantastic Fiction and 1992's terrific artistic comeback My Mind's Eye, but it's much more "rock" than the Land and 7 Day Weekend phase. The pièce de résistance is the original demo of "Venus Hunter," a fantastic song on the Fellows tape, but badly overproduced when redone on 1990's Fire on the Moon (released under the name Dream Command, not Comsat Angels). It's a quavering psychedelic rock brew that pointed clearly to 1992's My Mind's Eye salvation, years hence. Can we ask for a Volume 2?

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