Electribal Memories '98

In 1989, three blokes from Birmingham and a German diva tried to change pop....

Electribal Memories '98

6 / 10 IN 1989, THREE BLOKES FROM BIRMINGHAM and a German diva tried to change pop. However, their mystery confused the kids and they only made Top Of The Pops once. A failure, then.

However, while in 1998, this document exists mainly to satiate fans of Billie Ray Martin's solo works and demented acid house revivalists, it's also an instructive point in the development of accessible electronic dance music.

While the backroom boys fashioned tracks that were as aware of hip-hop breakbeats as they were of house and Eurodisco, Billie Ray concentrated on the soaring vocal histrionics that contrasted with sometimes chilling lyrics ('You're Walking' is about a stalker). She had the style to inhabit Odyssey's cool 'Inside Out', the ability to flesh out her own balletic opuses, and a strength that turned 'Talking With Myself' - included here in numerous, and eventually wearying, variations - and other songs into a series of thinly-veiled demands.

A pity she couldn't change the times.

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