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The Wolfgang Press

Enigmatic, moody, and challenging, Britain's Wolfgang Press were one of the most mercurial talents of the post-punk era, restlessly moving from gothic noise to dark balladry to eccentric funk; paradoxically, the group was also the 4AD label's longest tenured artist -- even their stylish album packages were all the product of the same designer, Alberto Ricci.

Formed in London in 1983, the Wolfgang Press comprised vocalist Michael Allen, guitarist Andrew Gray, and keyboardist Mark Cox. Allen and Cox first teamed in the group Rema Rema, which also featured Adam & the Ants alum Marco Perroni; after reuniting in the short-lived quartet Mass, the duo recruited Gray, and as the Wolfgang Press issued their cacophonous, gloomy debut LP, The Burden of Mules, in 1983. An EP trilogy co-produced by Cocteau Twin Robin Guthrie followed in quick succession: while 1984's Scarecrow was a lighter, more streamlined affair, 1985's Water spotlighted ominously sparse torch songs, and the same year's Sweatbox explored deconstructionist pop.

The Wolfgang Press' second full-length effort, 1986's Standing Up Straight, incorporated industrial and orchestral influences into the mix, while the Big Sex EP's "God's Number" offered a soulful backing chorus, a harbinger of things to come. Indeed, after 1988's hypnotic Bird Wood Cage and its leadoff single, "King of Soul," introduced strong elements of dub, reggae, and R&B, the trio took the full plunge into the dance arena with 1991's Queer, an idiosyncratic outing admittedly inspired by De La Soul's landmark 3 Feet High and Rising; the first single, a surreal cover of the Randy Newman-penned "Mama Told Me Not to Come," was a minor hit. 1995's Funky Little Demons completed the Wolfgang Press' transition into white funk; prior to its release, however, Cox exited the group's ranks. ~ Jason Ankeny
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Everything Is Beautiful (A Retrospect 1983-1995)

1. Birdie Song

2. Dreams And Light

3. Going South

4. Sweatbox

5. Chains

6. Heavens Gate

7. Kansas (Flood Mix)

8. Honey Tree

9. Sucker (Young Mix)

10. Executioner (Adamson Mix)

11. Slowtime

12. A Girl Like You

13. Respect

14. Mama Told Me Not To Come

15. Shut That Door

16. I Am The Crime

17. People Say (Live)

x

Track List: Funky Little Demons

Disc 1

1. Going South

2. 11 Years

3. Blood Satisfaction

4. Chains

5. Christianity

6. Derek The Confessor

7. So Long Dead

8. Executioner

9. She's So Soft

10. New Glass

11. Fallen Not Broken

12. People Say

Disc 2
x

Track List: Going South

1. Going South (7" Version)

2. Going South (Apollo 440 Mix)

3. Chains (Wobble Mix)

4. Going South (Country Style)

x

Track List: A Girl Like You

1. A Girl Like You (7" Mix)

2. Angel

3. A Girl Like You (1000 Times)

4. A Girl Like You (Born To Be Kissed)

x

Track List: Time

1. Time

2. Time Less

3. Dark Time

x

Track List: Queer

1. Birmingham

2. Mama Told Me Not To Come

3. Heavens Gate

4. Riders On The Heart

5. Question Of Time

6. Louis XIV

7. Fakes And Liars

8. Honey Tree

9. Birdie Song

10. Dreams And Light

11. Sucker

12. Mother Valentine

x

Track List: Raintime

1. Longtime

2. Bottom Drawer (Remix)

3. Assassination K/Kanserous

4. Slowtime

x

Track List: Bird Wood Cage

1. King Of Soul

2. Raintime

3. Bottom Drawer

4. Kansas

5. Swing Like A Baby

6. See My Wife

7. The Holey Man

8. Hang On Me (For Papa)

9. Shut That Door

10. The Wedding

11. The Great Leveller

12. That Heat

13. God's Number

x

Track List: Standing Up Straight

1. Dig A Hole

2. My Life

3. Hammer The Halo

4. Bless My Brother

5. Fire-Fly

6. Ghost

7. Rotten Fodder

8. Forty Days, Thirty Nights

9. I Am The Crime

x

Track List: The Legendary Wolfgang Press And Other Tall Stories

1. The Deep Briny

2. Tremble (My Girl Doesn't)

3. Heart Of Stone

4. Respect

5. My Way

6. I'm Coming Home (Mama)

7. Muted

8. Deserve

9. Sweatbox

10. Fire-Eater

11. Ecstasy

x

Track List: The Burden Of Mules

1. Lisa (The Passion)

2. Prostitute I

3. The Burden Of Mules

4. Complete And Utter

5. Prostitute II

6. Slow As A Child

7. Journalists

8. Give It Back

9. On The Hill

Comments

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I think Bird Wood Cage is at least their best produced album, although it's difficult to say which is their best. I'm fond of their darker, earlier releases as well as their later ones. As I've gotten older it becomes harder to rate them on a personal level. Geniuser is good too (Michael Allen). The new video is cool.
Report as inappropriate
Where was a good album. Damn you autospell
Report as inappropriate
Michael2178 I was lucky enough to have then sign my copies of water, scarecrow, and sweatbox. It's unsurprising that the combination skews toward their later work as it got some semblance of airplay, abd let's face it, Where was really a good album. It's not standing up straight or birdwood cage, but a more accessible but still really good album. Funny little demons, not so much
Report as inappropriate
No offense, fellows, but look at the tracklisting of the "Everything Is Beautiful" best-of compilation. You can get a pretty good idea of what The Wolfgang Press consider to be the heart of their work. It's largely the latter era, what they matured into. You can complain all you like and say that *you* consider their early work to be "the true Wolfgang Press", but that's not for you to decide, is it?
Report as inappropriate
I have their 4 12" EP's and they are what I consider Wolfgang Press to truly be!

I will definetly check out REMAREMA.
Report as inappropriate
Seriously, has anyone at pandora listened to anything other than their last two albums? Perhaps any of their previous 4 ALBUMS and 4 EPS!!!

Everything on this station sounds like their pop-motown-c e n t r i c disco garbage they made for Queer and Funky Little Demons. Every other album was brilliant. Burden of Mules and Standing Up Straight always get me. And their previous incarnation Rema Rema was beautiful and eccentric.

Please fix this station Pandora! Now you're playing LFO? Really?

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