And What Have You Done With My Body, God?

No Comments November 22, 2006

I've just finished having my mind mangled again for the umpteenth time by the Art Of Noise - probably one of the most infuential 'bands' of the 1980s, or at least before Anne Dudley, J. J. Jeczalik and Gary Langhan jumped the good ship ZTT and went their separate ways with China Records becoming a pastiche of themselves leaving Trevor Horn and Paul Morley behind. "And What Have You Done With My Body, God?" is a 4 CD box-set that covers their crucial period at ZTT, charting the initial foolings with the Fairlight CMI and found sounds to the highly polished released articles (Into Battle With and Who's Afraid Of). At times joyful, playful - sometimes tranquil and downright beautiful - and others surreal and disturbing, this is a fantastic collection of work.

This will leave some listeners cold; there are numerous versions of Beat Box, and the noodlings that were to become the definitive Beat Box (Diversion One) - various different takes on Close (To The Edit) culminating in the monumental twenty minute session that is "Diversion Eight, Diversion Two, Closest, Close-Up, Close (To The Edit), Closed" on CD4 - and not forgetting Moments In Love which appears in no less than four different variations.

But for those interested in the evolution of a band on the cutting edge of technology as they were during 1983 to 1985, this is essential listening.

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