“Please everybody, if we didn’t do everything we could’ve done, we tried, etc.” - note from the band to John Peel & staff
“Without John Peel sessions” guitarist Will Sergeant explains, “Echo And The Bunnymen, in my opinion, would not exist!” The Liverpool post-punk icons recorded a number of studio sessions for the famed BBC producer, and this set collects material from that finest sliver of their career: 1979 to 1983. “Villiers Terrace,” “Stars Are Stars” and “Pictures On My Wall” were all worked out in Peel’s studio before they appeared on the Bunnymen’s 1980 debut Crocodiles; likewise “Nocturnal Me,” “Ocean Rain,” “My Kingdom” and Donnie Darko highlight “The Killing Moon” (don’t front - if you’re under 35, this was how you found out about this band, case closed) all appear here in nascent form ahead of their more polished versions on the Ocean Rain album. Tried and true cuts like “Villiers Terrace,” “Turquoise Days” and “Over The Wall” sound so much more tactile and urgent here, stripped to their essence with very little more than guitar, bass, drum machine and Ian McCulloch’s peerless shrieking. Not to mention THE definitive versions of “That Golden Smile” and “I Bagsy Yours.” 21 tracks in total, spread across two LPs housed in gatefold sleeve with extensive liner notes, released on the band’s boutique Korova imprint. I’ve never quite loved any proper Bunnymen LP from start to finish, but this is near perfect. Recommended.
- 180g black double vinyl pressing
- indie exclusive
- gatefold sleeve w/ detailed liner notes
- music label: Korova 2019
reviewed by naffi sandwich 11/2019