The Camberwell Now were a noise/art group formed by drummer and vocalist Charles Hayward after the disbanding of This Heat, featuring This Heat’s sound technician Stephen Rickard who created analogue sampling boards for field samples and tape manipulation way before the sampler was brought in. First vinyl reissue since 1986 and features a bonus unreleased track.
8/10 Mr Pearls Brain Customer review, 9th May 2017
In had never heard of Camberwell Now until this reissue popped up which is galling for someone who owns all the This Heat records. I snapped it up immediately hoping it would be as good as This Heat but, y'know, a bit different. The personnel and instrumentation are different but the policy of experimental songcraft is intact and if anything it sounds more like This Heat than I expected. Charles Hayward's distinctive whine has something to do with that, too. It is more overtly political than before, a blast straight from Thatcher's Britain. Which was grim, not least because we all thought we were going to die in nuclear conflagration. As happens with political songs, some of the lyrics are a bit unwieldy: for example, "a better standard of living for ordinary working people" is not the most poetic of phrases, and feels crowbarred into place, but overall they make it work.
Light in the Attic have done their usual bang up job, a decent pressing with an extra track, a nice insert with some fascinating essays by those involved, photos, lyrics printed in full, and those stupid obi strips they do, which I think we could all live without.
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