The Soft Boys – ‘Kingdom Of Love’
The Soft Boys’ 1980 masterpiece Underwater Moonlight will be reissued on November 15 by Yep Roc Records.
The new edition marks the 30th anniversary of Moonlight‘s original release via Armageddon Records. Flying in the face of post-punk fashion, The Soft Boys’ invoked a bygone era of jangly psychedelic pop, but gave it a fiercely contemporary edge – via the sarcasm, salacity and scarcely contained rage of Robyn Hitchcock’s lyrics and the incendiary, electrified guitar-playing of Kimberley Rew. REM are but one of the many bands who claim to have been directly inspired by them.
The reissue presents the album in its original 10-song sequence on both CD and 180g vinyl, retaining its original cover art as well (best cover art ever?); included as free downloads are all previously released bonus tracks, most of which featured on Matador’s now highly collectible 2001 3xLP+7″ vinyl reissue.
Yep Roc are also reissuing The Soft Boys’ debut album, A Can Of Bees, on CD and 180g vinyl, also with bonus tracks to download. Less well-known than Underwater Moonlight and a good deal less accomplished, it’s nonetheless a riveting listen – Julian Cope was once moved to describe it as “a red hot poker up the arse of rock music”.
The Soft Boys split up in 1981, though there was a 21st anniversary reunion tour and album in 2001-2. Hitchcock has become a prolific solo artist, emphasising the folky side of his writing and earning a committed fanbase of Mojo-reading types, while Rew, unbelievably, became a member of Katrina And The Waves and wrote their mega-hit ‘Walking On A Sunshine’. Nuts.
Underwater Moonlight tracklist:
1. I Wanna Destroy You 2. Kingdom of Love 3. Positive Vibrations 4. I Got The Hots 5. Insanely Jealous 6. Tonight 7. You’ll Always Have To Go Sideways 8. Old Pervert 9. The Queen of Eyes 10. Underwater Moonlight
Bonus tracks (download only)
1.He’s a Reptile 2. Vegetable Man 3. Strange 4. Only The Stones Remain 5. Where are the Prawns 6. Wey Wey Hep Uh Hole 7. Dreams 8. Black Snake Diamond Rock 9. There’s Nobody Like You 10. Song No 4 11. Empty Girl 12. Have a Heart Betty (Mark 2) 13. Rock ‘n’ Roll Toilet (Mark 2) 14. Old Pervert (Section 1) 15. Like a Real Smoothie 16. Alien, 17. Bloat (extract) 18. Underwater Moonlight (Early version) 19. She Wears My Hair 20. Wang Dang Pig 21. Old Pervert (Section 2) 22. Insanely Jealous 23. Leave Me Alone 24. Goodbye Maurice or Steve 25. Old Pervert (Section 3) 26. Cherries. 27. Amputated 28. Over You 29. I Wanna, Er 30. Old Pervert
A Can Of Bees tracklist:
1. Give It to The Soft Boys 2. The Pigworker 3. Human Music 4. Leppo and the Jooves 5. The Rat’s Prayer 6. Do The Chisel 7. Sandra’s Having Her Brain Out 8. Return of the Sacred Crab 9. Cold Turkey 10. School Dinner Blues 11. Wading Through A Ventilator (Live)
Bonus Tracks (download only)
1. Let Me Put It Next To You 2. Blues in the Dark 3. When I Was A Kid 4. Love Poisoning 5. The Asking Tree 6. Muriel’s Hoof Rout of the Clones 7. Have a Heart Betty (Mark 1.) 8. Rock ‘n’ Roll Toilet (Mark 1) 9. Heartbreak Hotel