Out of the House, Out on Their Own

For a variety of reason bands fall apart and people move on and get on with their lives. Stuart Moxham and Mark Burgess were both leaders of bands that for one reason, or another, fell apart, but they took two different paths to becoming solo artists.

As the Young Marble Giants, Welsh guitarist, singer and keyboardist Stuart Moxham along with his brother Philip and singer Alison Statton

first foisted their doomy beatnik jazz-pop on an unsuspecting post-punk audience at the dawn of the ’80s.

Following the group’s premature split Stuart Moxham would go onto form Gist, a slightly less pastoral combo then the Young Marble Giants, but one with an equally brief existence, releasing one album, 1983’s Embrace the Herd.

Pursing a career as an animator it would be a decade before Stuart Moxham returned to making music. Unlike his previous work Signal Path is firmly in the middle of the road. Both "Her Shoes (Are Right)" and "Over the Sea"

have a mellow lilt redolent of mid-’60s adult pop, complete with brushed drums and sunny harmonica

The exquisite "Knives (Always Fall)," a duet with Alison Statton more then compensates for less then stellar attempts at the blues on "No One Road" and reggae, "Yeah X 3."

Mark Burgess was the front man for Manchester, England’s atmospheric pop band The Chameleons. Moderately popular in the UK, but ignored in the US, it was a combination of label problems and the sudden death of manager Tony Fletcher which caused the band to dissolve amidst much acrimony.

From the ashes of The Chameleons arose two bands. Burgess and ex-Chameleons drummer John Lever, along with guitarist Andy Clegg and second guitarist Andy Whitaker formed the Sun & the Moon. They released a self titled album in 1988, but following the release of 1989’s Alive; Not Dead EP broke up.

Ex-Chameleons guitarists Dave Fielding and Reg Smithies along with Gary Lavery and a drum machine formed the Reegs. They released an EP in 1989 and two full length albums, 1991’s Return of the Sea Monkeys and 1993s Rock the Magic Rock.

Burgess returned to recording in 1993 with the first of three solo albums recorded with the Sons of God. Initially just a bunch of friends the group gradually included Neil Thin, Yves Altana, Karen Leatham and ex-Chameleon John Lever.

Zima Junction, the title taken from a poem by Russian poet Yevgeny Yevtushenko, consists

of demos "for an album that was never to be."

Minus the guitar power of the Chameleons backing him Zima Junction is a series of mostly acoustic-performed, folk-tinged songs. Most of the album can be attributed solely to Burgess, except on "Beat the Boat" where his then collaborator, British singer/songwriter, Brian Glancy takes the lead, and on "When Harmony Comes" where they duet.

Only the song

"Happy New Life," … has the sweep and passion of prime Chameleons

The album closes with two covers, a version of Philip Glass’ "Facades," and a version of the Nancy Sinatra’ sung theme for the James Bond film You Only Live Twice.


DISCOGRAPHY

Stuart Moxham & The Original Artists

Signal Path (CD, Digital) (Feel Good All Over) 1992  
Random Rules (CD, Digital) (Peak Records) 1993  
Fine Tuning (CD) (Feel Good All Over) 1996

Appears On:

"Against Creating War" Our Floating Images Of Youth (2xCD) (Vinyl Japan) 1999  


Stuart Moxham & the Original Artists – Signal Path (1992)

Playing Time: 40:44

1. Over the Sea 3:23
2. Between Edits 0:38
3. Her Shoes (Are Right) 3:01
4. Knives (Always Fall) 3:45
5. Broken Heart Blues 3:30
6. It Says Here 3:41
7. No One Road 2:25
8. That’s My Love 1:44
9. I Wonder Why 1:27
10. Remember 3:44
11. It Took You 4:23
12. Mutual Gaze 3:19
13. Yeah x 3 2:19
14. Unit of Desire 3:25


DISCOGRAPHY

Mark Burgess & The Sons Of God

Zima Junction (CD, Digital) (Fuego) 1993 
Zima Junction (CD, LP) (Imaginary Records) 1993   
Zima Junction (CD) (Pivot) 1994   
Spring Blooms Tra-la (CD+CD Single) (Strange Ways Records, Indigo) 1994   
Spring Blooms Tra-la (CD) (Strange Ways Records) 1994   
Manchester 1993 (CD) (Pivot) 1994 

Appears On:

"Happy New Life" Bouquet Of Dreams Volume 2 (CD) (Dark Star) 1994  
"World On Fire", "Refugees" Magic Boomerang (CD) (Phantasmagoria) 2004 

 

Mark Burgess & The Sons Of God – Zima Junction (1994)

Playing Time: 52:28

1. World On Fire 4:41
2. Waiting For A Friend 3:15
3. Refugees 5:01
4. The Great Adventure 4:54
5. Beat The Boat 4:59
6. When Harmony Comes 4:06
7. Our Soul, Lost Soul, Brother And Fool 2:44
8. Happy New Life 5:04
9. Up On The Hill 4:55
10. Facades By Glass In E’minor 8:00
11. You Only Live Twice 4:49

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3 responses to “Out of the House, Out on Their Own

  1. Thanks so much for this – I just discovered Alison Statton. Can’t wait to hear these related musicians & albums. What an incredible treat.

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