21 October 2008
Draculas Daughter - Candy
Year of Release: 1997
You'll remember, of course, that a few months back I mentioned that Bill Drummond and Mark Manning (aka Zodiac Mindwarp) wrote and released a number of records in 1997 under the guise of up-and-coming acts from Finland? Oh, you don't. Well, if you really need more information on the slightly baffling project (which in fairness is no more or less baffling than most Drummond activities) a website still sits here: http://www.probe-records.com/KALEVALA/page.html
As only 500 copies of each were ever pressed and imported to Britain, they're naturally extremely scarce, and actually tremendously varied in quality as well. Some - such as KLF roadie Gimpo's self-titled "Gimpo" - are an absolute waste of precious pressing plant resources. Others - like Aurora Borealis' self-titled "Aurora Borealis" - were actually extremely good, but I won't waffle on about that one too much since it's already been posted on this blog elsewhere.
Draculas (sic) Daughter's "Candy" sit somewhere between the two. Manning and Drummond periodically used local Finnish musicians and singers for the recordings and just directed their style, and it seems fairly safe to say that's what happened in this case. What you've got here, then, is a pretty good Velvet Underground apeing disc which wouldn't have been out of place amidst the mid eighties music scene, or indeed the late sixties one. It's hypnotic, repetitive and insistent, and features some agreeably lazy, scuzzed up guitar work in the instrumental break. Please don't ask me why the original title "Supermodel" is scrubbed out on the label, because I have absolutely no clue...
One has to wonder if Drummond was trying to belatedly achieve with Kalevala a project he mooted a long time ago for Zoo Records, where he created "parallel universe" versions of bands on their catalogue. The Teardrop Explodes were to become Whopper, and featured Cope's alter-ego Kevin Stapleton on lead vocals who "enjoyed a game of rugby and liked the odd pint". These occasionally poorly disguised Finnish bands with their records released by a fictional clueless sounding Finnish indie record label owner do bring to mind a parallel universe Zoo Records, set up in Helsinki rather than Liverpool. Only Drummond could honestly back me up on my hunch, though, and I've a funny feeling he won't bother.
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