8 December 2008

Earl Brutus - The Early Singles (Well, most of them...)

Since uploading the last set of Earl Brutus mp3s some entries ago, I'm both stunned and reassured to discover that they are the second most popular reason people come to this blog from Google (See if you can guess the most popular reason. It's not hard). It's surprising because whilst they had a hardcore army of fans throughout the late nineties, their records never sold in staggering quantities even with the might of Island's marketing muscle behind them for their second album. It's reassuring because, of course, they frequently made some of the best music of the latter half of that decade - warped, demented, occasionally ramshackle but always invigorating krautpunkrock records with whopping great glam rock beats tacked on, rather like furry dice to the windscreen mirror of a mud splattered Volkswagen stock racing car.

At a time when a lot of bands were frequently prissy about their work, they reminded us that sometimes spontaneous, messy chaos is at the root of a lot of good rock music. And so it proved - the first album "Your Majesty We Are Here" was written and recorded in two weeks flat, and still sounds a hell of a lot better than most albums that year which had huge budgets. It shames the major players to such an extent that when they signed to Island, I (wrongly, as it turned out) fretted about their material losing its edge.

The main thing to bear in mind when listening to these pre-major label singles, then, is that the B sides probably aren't going to be a good introduction to the band for newcomers. In the fortnight "Your Majesty..." was put together, it doesn't seem as if there was a lot of meat left on the bones to dish out to the singles buying public. For the most part - and with one or two choice exceptions - these are instrumental curios or rum little doodles which aren't up there with the band's best. The A sides, on the other hand, are largely different from the mixes on the album and sound as fresh and brutal as ever.

Two things in particular you should pay attention to are "Bonjour Monsieur", the second single from the band which never made it on to the album, and is up their with some of their best material, and the utterly ludicrous "Flash Versus Tarkus" mix of "Life's Too Long" which uses dialogue from the film "Flash" to rebuild the single.

Missing from this download set, I'm afraid, is the 1993 single mix of "Life's Too Long" backed with "Valley of the Slimkings", which I've never seen a copy of anywhere - if anyone can help or enlighten me or even upload the damn thing, I'd be grateful. Also, completely unlisted on the Wikipedia discography is the limited edition 1995 Christmas single "Single Seater Xmas", which I also don't have a copy of, and also seems to have been absent from second hand record store shelves for as long as I've been looking. Still, that was available as part of the download for the "Your Majesty" album some time back, and you can't have everything...

For further information, click on the "Earl Brutus" tag at the bottom of this entry.

Bonjour Monsieur (b/w "On Me Not In Me")

Earl Brutus - Bonjour Monsieur

Label: Royal Mint
Year of Release: 1995
Source: 7" vinyl rip

Navyhead (b/w "North Sea Bastard")

Earl Brutus - Navyhead

Label: Deceptive
Year of Release: 1996
Source: 7" vinyl rip

Life's Too Long

Earl Brutus - Life's Too Long

Label: Deceptive
Year of Release: 1996
Source: CD single

1. Life's Too Long
2. I Love Earl Brutus (Introducing Shinya)
3. Motarola
4. Life's Too Long (Flash Versus Tarkus)

I'm New (b/w "Like Queer David" and "Mondo Rotunda")

Earl Brutus - I'm New

Label: Deceptive
Year of Release: 1996
Source: 7" vinyl rip



Sky Clearbrook said...

I've got the 1993 single. Wait there... I'll be back in touch about that.

In the meantime, you might want to read this.

Sky Clearbrook said...

Icerink [Davo 7 12], 1993

Life's Too Long

Life's Too Long (Instrumental)

Valley Of The Slimkings

And, as a wee bonus, from the We Are Icerink compilation...
Birth Of Sharon

The generosity of strangers, eh?

23 Daves said...

Thanks very much for sorting this out, it's hugely appreciated. I was beginning to think absolutely nobody had a copy of this.

Anonymous said...

Hi guys -hope you can help me out, but how do you go about downloading this genius? I've got a fat pipe for this rarity but no clue as how to savour the fruits. Thanks in adv, Bus Driver

23 Daves said...

Click on the Sharebee link, choose the site you want to download from, and that should do it.

Sharebee hasn't been 100% reliable lately, but it was working this morning when I checked.

Anonymous said...

Many, many thanks! Bus Driver x

Anonymous said...

Hello again from the Bus Driver! Er, any clues as to how to download Mr Clearbrook's contributions? Can't work that divvy Divshare (sure its me!). Cheers!

23 Daves said...

Actually, I've been struggling with that as well. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Anonymous said...

You may have already figured this out, but if not...

To download, just stream each track in full through divshare's flash player, then go to your temp internet files folder (through 'Disk cleanup' or equivalent) and the mp3(s) should be sitting in one of the folders, complete.

Good post! Do you plan on posting the remaining Brutus singles, Dave(s)?

Anonymous said...

Arrghhghh! Frustratingly enuff, Bus Driver uses a Mac. Hey-ho, back to the depot...

23 Daves said...

I have a Mac and an unreliable PC at home - if I manage to grind the PC into action to download this stuff, I'll try to pass it on to you.

As for uploading the major label singles, there's a problem in that the Universal Plan EP is still commercially available via iTunes (yes, I couldn't quite believe it either). However, the other two remain unavailable, so I might get on to this at some point.

Anonymous said...

Fair enough, Daves.

Try this for an alternative download:


Do Macs really have no cache/temp files function? Spooky.

23 Daves said...

Thanks a lot!

I'm sure Macs do have some kind of temporary folder going on somewhere, but (like the Bus Driver) I've yet to work out how to access it. I've just gone back to using a Mac after years of using PCs, so I'm still in the process of refamiliarising myself with the functions.

Anonymous said...

In my less-than-expert fumblings, I discovered that the Mac equiv of Temp internet is in Library caches, but when you get there it's a dead end. Much kudos to my fellow anonymous - fine work, v generous; Mr Sky Clearbrook - the originator; and, of course, 23 Daves - long may your site prosper - what an excellent resource. All hail Novelty Rock! Bus Driver (Keep on bussin')

shitboyfriend said...

what a fantastic post - thanks x

Flowdeeps said...

Direct links to Sky's single can be found here:




Sky Clearbrook said...

For those interested in other Icerink releases, have a look at this post. More to follow...

Sky Clearbrook said...

Moving into 1993, click here for the remaining Icerink singles (including "Life's Too Long").