Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Art of the Cover - "Pillows & Prayers: Cherry Red Records, 1981 - 1984" Box Set

What a fucking sublime 4-Disc, Box Set here from the mighty Cherry Red label. All beautifully presented too.

The magnificent four disc (3 CDs + 1 DVD) 25th Anniversary Edition Pillows & Prayers: Cherry Red Records, 1981 - 1984 Box Set offers a fantastic snapshot of the surge of creativity that surrounded pioneering label Cherry Red at the start of the '80s  .... an all-embracing collection of records that are achingly hip, lovably gauche, and bizarrely enduring. 

The original 'Pillows & Prayers' compilation album was released in the early 1980's & went on to top the Indie Chart, spending almost a year in the top 30. To this day it is still one of the most acknowledged releases from the label.

The set features early recordings from many pioneering and distinguished artists, including Everything But The Girl, Eyeless In Gaza, the Monochrome Set, Ben Watt, Tracey Thorn, Felt and many others. 

The three CDs contain a total of 53 tracks including rarities previously unavailable on CD. 

On the wonderful DVD , Cherry Red Records release, for the first time ever on DVD, the visual accompaniment to one of the label's most recognized musical titles 'Pillows & Prayers'. The Pillows & Prayers video was released a few years after the album and provides the main focus of the DVD. Many of Cherry Red's most popular acts are featured, including Everything But The Girl, Eyeless In Gaza, The Monochrome Set & the Marine Girls.

There are also three bonus tracks, not included on the original video release (Medium Medium 'Hungry So Angry', Eyeless In Gaza 'Veil Like Calm', & Monochrome Set 'Jacobs Ladder'). Special features include an interview with 'Pillows & Prayers' 'originators' Iain Mcnay & Mike Always, plus a gallery featuring classic Cherry Red Records album artwork.
The set is issued in a small cardboard box containing individual replica sleeves for each disc along with a 48 page booklet.


Gotta go way back to the early '80s when I had this on vinyl, an import copy no less. Oh, what wonders this album unleashed! It brought a whole new world of music to my ears, to my mind; new tunes beyond any genre classification. It was "new" music, but it wasn't new wave, or alternative, or grunge, or dance. It was just good. Very, very, very good.  
Imagine hearing these artists for the very first time on one album: Felt, Everything But the Girl, Eyeless in Gaza, Kevin Coyne, Nightingales, and Tracy Thorn and Ben Watt as solo artists. 
Toss in a bunch of "no-name" wonders, and mind-blowing spoken word perfomances by Attila the Stockbroker and Quentin Crisp and you have a classic; a wondrous, influential collection of tunes from the Cherry Red vaults. 
And ... while looking at this album listing online, I suddenly notice that there is now a 3-CD version of "Pillows and Prayers" out there. Do I want to hear more? Even after all these years, the answer is a most emphatic "Yes." Time for another order ... 
-- By Donald E. Gilliland


Pillows & Prayers 1 (Cherry Red Records 1982-1983) - Vol.1
CD1-1 –Five Or Six Portrait 2:48
CD1-2 –Monochrome Set, The Eine Symphonie Des Grauens 2:17
CD1-3 –Thomas Leer All About You 3:46
CD1-4 –Tracey Thorn Plain Sailing 1:59
CD1-5 –Ben Watt Some Things Don't Matter 4:20
CD1-6 –Kevin Coyne Love In Your Heart 2:52
CD1-7 –Piero Milesi Modi 2 (Extract) 1:02
CD1-8 –Joe Crow Compulsion 4:18
CD1-9 –Marine Girls Lazy Ways 2:42
CD1-10 –Felt My Face Is On Fire 3:04
CD1-11 –Eyeless In Gaza No Noise 2:49
CD1-12 –Passage, The XOYO 3:53
CD1-13 –Everything But The Girl On My Mind 3:08
CD1-14 –Attila The Stockbroker A Bang And A Wimpy 1:41
CD1-15 –Misunderstood, The I Unseen 1:58
CD1-16 –Nightingales, The Don't Blink 3:59
CD1-17 –Quentin Crisp Stop The Music For A Minute 1:01
Pillows & Prayers 1 (Cherry Red Records 1982-1983) - Vol.2
CD2-1 –Marine Girls A Place In The Sun 2:29
CD2-2 –Jane It's A Fine Day 2:45
CD2-3 –Kevin Hewick Feathering The Nest 3:51
CD2-4 –Fantastic Something If She Doesn't Smile... 3:14
CD2-5 –Eyeless In Gaza New Risen 2:47
CD2-6 –Monochrome Set, The Jet Set Junta 2:04
CD2-7 –Morgan Fisher Un Homme Et Une Femme 2:45
CD2-8 –Felt Penelope Tree 4:15
CD2-9 –Maurice Deebank The Watery Song 4:54
CD2-10 –In Embrace Shouting In Cafés 3:33
CD2-11 –Grab Grab The Haddock I'm Used Now 3:17
CD2-12 –Ben Watt & Robert Wyatt Walter And John 4:05
CD2-13 –Five Or Six Another Reason 3:04
CD2-14 –Red Box Chenko 3:30
Our Brilliant Careers (Cherry Red Rarities 1981-1983) - Vol.3
CD3-1 –Five Or Six The Trial 6:17
CD3-2 –Ben Watt Cant 3:19
CD3-3 –Ben Watt Tower Of Silence 1:57
CD3-4 –Ben Watt Aubade 0:57
CD3-5 –Reflections, The 4 Countries 2:03
CD3-6 –Reflections, The The Coroner & The Inquest 4:50
CD3-7 –Nightingales, The Inside Out 3:04
CD3-8 –Nightingales, The Under The Lash 2:19
CD3-9 –Everything But The Girl Feeling Dizzy 4:15
CD3-10 –Five Or Six This Is For The Moment 2:10
CD3-11 –Five Or Six Think 4:46
CD3-12 –Five Or Six Rushes 2:24
CD3-13 –Five Or Six Theme 3:59
CD3-14 –Nightingales, The My Brilliant Career 3:20
CD3-15 –Nightingales, The Son Of God's Mate 4:21
CD3-16 –Joe Crow Absent Friends 4:03
CD3-17 –Monochrome Set, The The Bridge 3:07
CD3-18 –Tracey Thorn Goodbye Joe 2:30
CD3-19 –Fantastic Something The 1,000 Guitars Of St. Dominiques 3:00
CD3-20 –Kevin Hewick 'Neath Dancing Waves 1:50
CD3-21 –Kevin Hewick Tender Bruises & Scars 0:54
CD3-22 –Red Box Valley 4:43
Pillows & Prayers - The Cherry Red Video (Cherry Red Records 1981-1984 DVD) - Vol.4
DVD-1 –Marine Girls A Place In The Sun 3:12
DVD-2 –Jane (4) It's A Fine Day 5:19
DVD-3 –Kevin Hewick Feathering The Nest 4:22
DVD-4 –Fantastic Something If She Doesn't Smile... 5:39
DVD-5 –Eyeless In Gaza New Risen 3:16
DVD-6 –Everything But The Girl On My Mind 4:17
DVD-7 –Monochrome Set, The Jet Set Junta 2:44 
Bonus Tracks 
DVD-8 –Medium Medium Hungry So Angry 4:00
DVD-9 –Eyeless In Gaza Veil Like Calm 1:50
DVD-10 –Monochrome Set, The Jacobs Ladder 3:54 
Plus Bonus Material: 
DVD-11 –Iain McNay and Mike Alway Interview With Pillows & Prayers 'Originators' Iain McNay And Mike Alway 43:52
DVD-12 –No Artist Gallery Featuring Classic Cherry Red Album Artwork

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