LIFE SOUNDTRACK: Frank Tovey – Civilian
Frank Tovey became famous under the name Fad Gadget in the 80s as a pioneer of experimental electronic music, who as one of the first used industrial noises to augment his sound. I discovered him through his ’83 single Collapsing New People off the album Gag, which features some great songs, but is all in all a mixed bag. After that he began to release music under his own name. Civilian came out in 1988 and if I remember correctly, I bought it at WOM in Munich, a gigantic record store, which featured hundreds of turntables to listen to albums on the spot.
It became my favorite album for quite a long time. It is, according to the liner notes, mostly recorded with percussive instruments, which gives it a unique sound. I’ve always liked Frank Tovey’s voice and, listening to it today with more understanding for the lyrics, I still find Civillian a great record today with From the City to the Isle of Dogs and The Brotherhood being some of my favorites songs.
The one song I’ve never liked too much is Bridge Street Shuffle, so I was quite disappointed when Frank Tovey chose to make it the anchor of his follow up Tyranny & the Hired Hand a year.