Browsing through the always interesting rows of stacked vinyl in Belfast’s Dragon Records of Wellington Place (some old, some new; some authentic, some problematic) I came across not one but two Eat Static LPs– both doubles. Interesting, thought I. Not only that, but these are the first two albums for Planet Dog, when their trance-techno music was at its most rewarding. Very interesting, thought I.
The third excitable bit came when saw they were priced at a rather liberal looking 12 and 15 quid each. (not sure why there was a price discrepancy as both vinyls were in perfect condition bar a little bit of wear on the sleeve’s edges, but this was only to be expected of records over two decades old).
When I got them home I immediately played both from start to finish (well, not before a cup of tea) and, though it was a strange experience hearing this music all over again after many a year of having not heard it (like browsing through old photos), was also noticeable how great it all still sounded; packed tight with alien sounds, pushing techno beats, smile inducing samples, and pitch perfect hallucinating trance. Cliche never sounded such fun.
The richness and weird joy to the music had me wondering why these records never sold anywhere near the levels of, say, Underworld’s first two discs had. Maybe a touch too eccentric and outsider for some ears. But, what great fun was had for those of us that jumped on the train. Or, was lifted onto their spaceship. Though, having said this, I do recall my local Virgin store displaying these discs in the middle of their floor on week of release. Not like the items were hidden from view or anything. Always loved the artwork on these LPs, too, so was nice being able to take both home and appreciate it all on 12″.
Oh, and one last note. Later that week I mentioned to a friend at work, who I knew was an Eat Static fan, about my rather lucky purchase. (turns out we were both present at the band’s rather sweaty psych-techno / hard trance gig at the Limelight venue March ’95). “What! I’d have bought those at a heartbeat if I’d known!” came his disgusted sounding reply. I went on to tell him that I thought he already owned both records. Honestly, I really assumed that he did.