Six Minor LPs from the Eighties for £30

Well, actually it was £37 for the lot - but I didn't get where I am today without the odd exaggeration. Frankly, if I didn't lie to myself, who else would there be to lie to?

Flashback in Islington have just taken delivery of a big collection. Someone's died. Or gone bust. Lots of eighties stuff one doesn't see so often. Priced very cheaply. So I picked up a bunch of things I've always been curious about.

Chronologically then.

Pauline Murray and The Invisible Girls (1980)

Always, always wanted to hear this. I'm as big a Martin Hannett fan as the next man. But what a crushing disappointment. I've only read people being polite about it but it's real gold to lead stuff, the blame of which I'm afraid partly rests with Pauline. If you're reading this, sorry Pauline. It's not personal.

P.I.L. Flowers of Romance (1981)

Never heard this before I'm ashamed to admit. John Lydon clearly believed he could do no wrong. He made the mistake of thinking "Never Mind The Bollocks" and "Metal Box" were all about him. He was the eye of those storms, the anti-matter at the centre of their black holes, but it was the musicians he drew into those vortices that made those records what they were. This is a terrible, almost unremittingly feeble LP. Dominated by Johnny's muezzin-a-like wailing and ham-fisted percussion. Only the title track makes the slightest concession to a tune. Back to the drawing board.

The Comsat Angels: Sleep No More (1981)

Rock deity Phil Knight endorses this. It's pretty great. A minor classic guitar epic. Like a pocket U2. Or a noir-ish Psychedelic Furs. Or an oblique Simple Minds. Or a deracinated Big Country. I could go on, but shant.

Cabaret Voltaire: The Crackdown (1983)

Ok, so my old pal Nick Gutterplekz, I wonder how this fits into his analogue cosmology? It's not the hip Cabs of "Red Mecca", though perhaps in one of those quirks, somehow suddenly very trendy. A stab at a more commercial sound which is really as misshapen and discordant as their older stuff. The rapping a bit odd, but strangely tolerable.

Breaking news: Ho, ho! It's all about the free LTD edition EP that comes with this. "Featuring four tracks from the "DOUBLEVISION" VIDEO." This is what I always wanted from the Cabs. Amazing.

Ryuichi Sakamoto: Neo Geo (1987)

Big fan of this guy's. Never had anything as late as this. A literally astonishing line up - Iggy Pop, Sly Dunbar, Tony Williams, Bootsy Collins, Bill Laswell, David Van Tieghem. Silly. Must have cost a fortune in session fees. Sadly, it's quite flat. However "Okinawa Song - Chin Nuku Juushii" is fantastic. There's a great video of him playing a slightly slaughtered version live beside the Eiffel tower. That tune highly recommended to the bamboo flute and fairlights massive.

Ambitious Lovers: Greed (1988)

Love Arto. 4EVA. I have "Envy" (1984)  too which I've realised along with this and "Lust" (1991) forms a kind of trilogy. Geddit? Like the Cabs' effort it's a gloriously wrong-headed attempt at entry-ism. Always really rated "Prize" - but discovered "Noon Chill" is really the one. Must cop that one soon.