Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Josef K - Entomology (2006)

Josef K's complete studio recordings can be had on two discs. Young and Stupid and The Only Fun in Town/Sorry for Laughing, both of which were reissued in 2002, tell the whole story, yet they were deleted by the time of Entomology's late 2006 release. The disc marks the first time anything Josef K-related has been released Stateside, and it passably packs the highlights. Half of the tracks are pulled from Sorry for Laughing (a 1980 album that initially didn't make it past the test-pressing phase) and The Only Fun in Town (a 1981 album that featured some re-recordings of Sorry for Laughing material), while the remainder wraps up all the essential sides from the band's singles, in addition to a 1981 BBC session for John Peel. If you have the 2002 LTM reissues, there's no need to obtain the disc; it would be completely redundant. If you don't have them, you'll be getting the vivid gist of a sharp and short-lived band — one that delivered brief, spastic shards of over-caffeinated post-punk with skittish vocals on the verge of spinning out of control. Along with Fire Engines, Orange Juice, Associates, Altered Images, Scars, Simple Minds, Aztec Camera, and Cocteau Twins, Josef K were standouts of an extremely vital post-punk era Scotland. This disc, along with Orange Juice's The Glasgow School and Scritti Politti's Early, is one of the essential post-punk reissues of 2005/2006.

[Andy Kellman, allmusic.com]

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