Band Apart

  • Band Apart
  • Band Apart EP (Bel. Crammed Discs) 1982 
  • Marseille (Bel. Crammed Discs) 1983 

Centered around expatriate Frenchman Medak Mader (guitars, synth) and one Jane Bliss Nodland (vocals, e-bow guitar), Band Apart make grimly impressive music: an intimidating bass’n’drums 4/4 laid down just faster than a stroll (but with vicious inexorability) and whining, gnashing guitars, plus scary vocals. One near-mesmerizing track of multiple guitar/synth washes on the EP is hampered only by the limits of recording and pressing quality.

Marseille is an interesting assortment; more thoughtful, arty, varied and uneven than the EP, but also less confrontational. The one out-and-out turkey is a go at Rodgers and Hart’s “Lover” (!?!). Other than that, even its lesser tracks have a sort of bohemian charm.

[Jim Green]