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BLUE RONDO A LA TURK (Buy CDs by this artist)
The Heavens Are Crying (UK Diable Noir/Virgin) 1981
Chewing the Fat (UK Diable Noir/Virgin) 1982
Bees Knees and Chickens Elbows (UK Virgin) 1984
Too Soon to Come (UK Virgin) 1986

It shows you how far and fast new wave traveled: five years earlier, Chris Sullivan might have been screaming lyrics in a punk band; in 1980, he could have been skanking in front of some neo-ska bunch. But in 1982, he was singing in a quasi-salsa/cool-jazz group wanting, in his words, to bring back show biz. Chewing the Fat uses a number of big name producers (Langer and Winstanley, Godley and Creme, Mike Chapman), and the multi-ethnic London-based ten-piece turns in solid performances. But why bother settling for imitations when you can get the originals? (Sullivan did paint an attractive neo-Cubist album cover, though.)

[Jim Green]