Forming in 1985 after the first split of their band Bauhaus, LOVE AND ROCKETS is the seminal, groundbreaking trio of Daniel Ash, David J and Kevin Haskins. Love and Rockets provided a clean slate and an opportunity to plumb the depths of imagination and influences.
On June 9th, we will continue our Beggars Arkive reissue series with the previously announced expanded vinyl edition of Hot Trip To Heaven plus an expanded edition of Sweet F.A. and a brand new cd/digital collection titled My Dark Twin, a companion to the band’s 1996 album Sweet F.A. The 22 track double CD/Digital release contains eight previously unreleased versions and six unreleased songs from the Sweet F.A. sessions.
Daniel Ash has created an exclusive digital mix of the title track which you can listen to now:
2023 has seen the release and near-immediate sell-out of a limited edition box set containing Love and Rockets six Beggars Banquet albums on colored vinyl, the announcement of the first Love and Rockets show in 15 years at Cruel World Festival in Pasadena followed by additional tour dates, and the continued reissuing of their six Beggars albums. Vinyl reissues of Seventh Dream Of Teenage Heaven and Express came out in January and Earth, Sun, Moon and Love and Rockets (self-titled) come out this Friday (April 28th).
JUNE 9th – SWEET F.A.
Having signed to Rick Rubin’s American Recordings label, the band was guided by the legendary producer in a return to more guitar-based songs for 1996’s Sweet F.A. The album cover features a striking photo of a burnt guitar which was retrieved from the debris after a fire broke out at Rubin’s mansion, where the band were living while working on songs for the album. They lost all of their gear, some of their demo recordings, and nearly their lives as well. The resulting album was inspired by some of their earliest influences – The Velvet Underground, The Stooges, The Doors, Can. It spins tales of passion and loss, carried on a fluid, moody throb. Undulating, hypnotic rhythms twine around melancholy lyrics which examine life at a primal level, as ethereal electronic effects play counterpoint to earthquake reverberating guitars. The track “Sweet Lover Hangover” was an alternative radio hit.
David J: “Sweet F.A was our coming of age album. A rite of passage and the Phoenix rising from both the literal and figurative flames”
-This is a double black LP with a gatefold sleeve
-Expanded with four extra tracks:
D1. My Dark Twin * previously unheard song outside of box set
D2. Butterfly * previously unheard song outside of box set
D3. Venus Child * previously unheard song outside of box set
D4. Pick Yourself Up * previously unheard song outside of box set
|JUNE 9th – MY DARK TWIN|
My Dark Twin is a 22 track double cd/digital compilation tracing the journey to Sweet F.A. The release contains eight previously unreleased versions and six unreleased songs from the Sweet F.A. sessions. It also contains a booklet with new comments from the band about the recordings and notes from historian Andrew Brooksbank.
The band began recording the follow-up to Hot Trip To Heaven at San Francisco’s Coast Recorders with Andy Taub at the helm. These initial sessions proved fruitful and produced many quality recordings. Despite these very promising tracks, it was determined by all that the essential spark wasn’t quite there. Rick Rubin suggested a new studio and a new producer. John Fryer came on board and took Andy Taub’s recordings to Chipping Norton studios and deconstructed them, adding an “English” edge to the Coast recordings. The band also recorded some additional, but ultimately unused tracks at Chipping Norton including a spontaneous improvised cover of the beloved Mink DeVille’s classic ’77 hit “Spanish Stroll”. The band brought these tracks back to California when they were offered full use of Rick Rubin’s haunted 1919 Laurel Canyon mansion as a base in which to stay and rehearse with the intention of ideally coming up with more material that American Recordings felt was needed in order to complete the record.
A couple of inspired new tracks were recorded on Kevin’s portable DAT machine, and acting on instinct, he thankfully he took them home with him on the night that a massive fire broke out. They lost all of their gear and nearly lost their lives as well. After the fire, the band checked into Jive in Silver Lake with producer Paul Wallfisch – Jive as basically Paul’s black widow infested garage! “Shelf Life” is David J’s direct retort to the delivery of news that MCA would not be picking up the option on his solo contract. Bruce Kaphan (American Music Club) lends a hand on this track with his extraordinary pedal steel. “Ritual Radio” was an improvised rehearsal room jam – a spooky 18 minute piece. “U. O. ME.” is a spontaneous, improvised jam between Love and Rockets and Genesis P. Orridge (also very spooky!) Though it is raw, rough and unrehearsed, and not a studio-quality recording, the compilers thought it was important to include. (The original infamous Gristleizer’s last stand!) “California (Have A Nice Apocalypse!)” has a few guest musicians that apparently just happened to be hanging out in the studio, including Chuck Prophet on guitar, Bruce Kaphan (American Music Club) on pedal steel and Steve Carter on piano. It was recorded in a single take at the end of a very long and productive day. “Sweet F.A.” was inspired by one of Daniel’s many motorcycle journeys and on one occasion brought a guitar with him, and he said “I was in a lonely place at the time and that melancholic lyric was written in a motel room” “Spanish Stroll” is a spontaneous, loose cover version of the 1977 Mink DeVille classic, taped on an old boombox. Kevin employing a knife and fork and empty wine bottles as percussion with David on wheezing harmonium plus backing vocals. Daniel plays guitar and sings lead vocals.
|DISC ONE The Fever (First Version) * That’s Progress + Sweet Lover Hangover (Edit) Bomber’s Moon + Words of a Fool (First Version) * Libido Talking + Pearl (First Version) * Shelf Life (First Version) * Sad And Beautiful World (First Version) * Returning + Ritual Radio U. O. ME. + |
DISC TWO The Glittering Darkness California (Have A Nice Apocalypse!) + Butterfly Venus Child Here Come The Comedown (Rough Mix) * Pick Yourself Up Sweet F. A. (Rough Mix) * Sweet Lover Hangover (Remix) My Dark Twin Spanish Stroll % *
|*previously unreleased version|
+ previously unreleased song
% previously unreleased cover
|Love And Rockets will be touring the U.S. beginning May 20th with The Cruel World Festival in Los Angeles and circling the States, in including shows in Salt Lake City, Seattle, Chicago, New York City, Boston, Atlanta and a trio of shows in Texas. Special guest for May 24th in Salt Lake City and May 27th in Portland, OR will be Soriah. Support on all other dates including the first Portland show (May 26th) will be Vinsantos. |
Named after the underground comic by the Hernandez brothers, Love And Rockets made seven records over the course of thirteen years. They announced themselves to the world with their radically unique take on the classic Temptations song “Ball Of Confusion.” This debut proved that they were going to be a force to contend with. It became a huge seller and a popular club hit in the US and Canada, where it also went gold. It marked the beginning of a career that would span an impressive 14 years and seven albums. The legacy of the band has only grown with more people realizing the extent of their influence and generations of new fans discovering them. The list of artists who cite their influence is impressive: The Flaming Lips, The Dandy Warhols, A Place To Bury Strangers, Jane’s Addiction, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Beck, Maynard Keenan, Dubfire and the Pixies.