Salford Music Scene 10th July 2012 – AAAK Special

At the end of the 80’s the duo known as As Able As Kane(AAAK)  first stalked the streets of the NW, bullying audiences with their Buildingscape Beats – a mutant offspring of the Electronic Body Music scene.

They  took their name from a song by Scraping Foetus Off The Wheel and their influences from European acts like Laibach, The Young Gods and Front 242, as well as Essex’s Nitzer Ebb.

At the time, Manchester was in the midst of Stone Roses and Happy Monday madness (how history repeats itself)  and so the hard-edged industrial sound of AAAK appealed to only a handful [of special] people. The band signed 2 record deals and 2 albums were released back then.

Photograph by Chris Power from AAAKs most recent gig at the Kings Arms

John Peel liked them and so it seemed did the Europeans. The second album in the recently released John Peel on-line album collection happens to be a AAAK release…..

In 1992 the band split and it seemed like they were quickly forgotten. Ding, the music man in the outfit, continued a career in music, building up a recording studio and finding himself playing bass for the likes of The Fall , PJ Harvey and Frank Black over the years. More recently he played with Bobbie Peru and Kin.

Then, in 2009, Ding was approached by Electric Tremor records about having these earlier works re-released, an idea which quickly escalated into them being re-recorded and the band reforming after tracking down the band’s singer, Paul R.

A 2CD release entitled ‘The Collection’ was released in June 2010, with the band returning to the stage for the first time in nearly 20 years too. There were showcases in hometown Salford (at Sacred Trinity Church)  and over in Germany & Belgium .Performances were incredibly well received, with the band employing the use of video, lighting and circuit-bent technology to put the shows together. AAAK continue to go out of their way to be as awkward and ill-placed as they were 20 years ago by doing nothing like the norm.


Throughout 2011 they combined playing further live shows with the writing of a new LP. This is now out and entitled “Totalitarian Tip-Toe” – you can find my review here. Ding and Paul have expanded the line up of the band with guitarist Neil Rowbotham of The Words (“a much better guitarist than me” says Ding), and Tamsin A lead chanteuse and guitarist with Mr Heart. Special guests on the album were Kim F and Howard J from Kin. In the most recent live appearance the band was a five piece with Neil, Howard and Tamsin joining Paul and Ding on stage.

In April 2012 the band set up their own website where their early work is now available for free download. The website contains free downloads of the bands first two releases which Ding has remastered – plus other rare material.

www.aaak.co.uk

The show – which you can listen to here – contains the following tracks:

1 AAAK Sharpshooter The Collection
2 AAAK Outland Demo Version
3 AAAK Kingpin Totalitarian Tip-Toe
4 Toska Wilde and Luis Drayton I Am Kathy Kirby (AAAK Remix) I Am Kathy Kirby EP
5 AAAK Sleep Freeze The Collection
6 AAAK Get In The Real World Totalitarian Tip-Toe
7  AAAK Train to the West Big Fist
8 The Hired Help Perfect Society Exclusive Track
9 Kin Army of Ruined Buildings Flickering
10 AAAK We Fall Alone The Collection
11 The Fall Recovery Kit #2 We Wish You A Protein Xmas
12 AAAK Better Off Dead Totalitarian Tip-Toe
13 AAAK Sharpshooter (2012 – Shadow of Progress Remix) Exclusive Track
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Salford Music Scene – April 12th 2011

  1. The Hired Help – Perfect Society – Direct from the artist – Simon “Ding” Archer has been operating “The Hired Help” for a number of years – Ding started the project back in 2004 with Josh Klinghoffer and since then has collaborated with several other musicians, all of who, have at some point earned money as ‘hired help’. The  tracks on the show, and in this instance, feature Tamsin A. The opener builds on the “classic” TV series “Logan’s Run” but goes somewhere else entirely. Magical stuff.
  2. Trojan Horse – Mr Engels Says – Trojan Horse – from the marvelous debut album which Tony Thornborough has been focusing of late. I was hoping to promo the Japanchester gigs that Nick from the band has been organizing on this show and on the following night’s Aural Delights but a combination of senility and other distractions means this sort of got kicked into touch. I reviewed the album some time back- this is the opening track which is rather fine indeed.
  3. Johann Kloos – Arndale – Direct from the artist – aka Ha Ha Said The Car – Johann plays guitar/keyboards in the excellent Sandells – he sent me a compilation of his work a few weeks back and I was very impressed by his material – he writes cinematic pieces as well as excellent songs – on tonight’s show a couple of his more ambient pieces.
  4. Flying Gypsy – Hailies Song – Direct from the artist – more music from the very talented John Lynam from Ordsall.
  5. Samir Harmim – Midnight – Quixotic – the exemplary balladeer with a great song – check him out on Bandcamp.
  6. The Rat Catchers – The Ballad of Billy Unsworth – Direct from the artist – the song is aimed to be released officially later in the year and be used to raise charitable resources for servicemen and ex-servicemen. More details will follow. A salutory tale of the horrors of war and of the heroism of the working class.
  7. The Hired Help – Feeling Graceless – Direct from the artist – as above.
  8. Well North of Watford – Stand Tall – Direct from the artist – another tune from a singer songwriter from Little Hulton.
  9. Ghost Outfit – I was good when I was young – Pre-release – will be released on Salford’s own Sways lable in due course – watch this duo they are going places!
  10. Johann Kloos – Market Street – Direct from the artist – as above.
  11. The Black Knights – Creep Night – Free Download – the strangely erotic and sartorially elegant masters of sleaze with a new song which is a free download from thier site.
  12. Gnod – A Very Special Request – Bored Fortress (split with Robedoor) – more psychedelic gorgeousness from the wonderful Gnod.

To listen to the show – click on the link below….