Boomkat Product Review:
Crazy compilation hustling obscure Hi NRG Manc gems from the Savoy cabal and Rowetta beside ANOHNI songs, an industrial cracker by Diamanda Galás and tortured torchsongs, this is one of the oddest compilations of recent times - compiled from the vaults of Blacklips Performance Cult, a collective of underground performers, artists and drag queens formed in 1992 by ANOHNI.
Notable for including the first official digital release of Meng & Ecker’s spunky Hi-NRG jam ’Shoot Your Load’ and the sleazier screw of ‘Golden Shower’, the full 25-track set of ‘Blacklips Bar: Androgyns and Deviants - Industrial Romance for Bruised and Battered Angels, 1992–1995’ throws back to the backrooms and darkrooms of the early ‘90s in a way previously uncovered by the reissue-nostalgia complex. Across its 90 minute girth the set gets you up for a wiggle, then spanks your arse down to much smokier, sultrier treats in an unpredictable style that speaks to lesser known currents of early ‘90s queer bars and underground establishments.
Our eyes lit up like a flicked-on neon sign at the sight of Meng & Ecker’s dirty one-two all up in it. Hailing from the archives of Manchester’s legendary, transgressive publishers Savoy - who would issue a stack of cover versions by disgraced rock ’n roll star P.J. Proby, as well as Fenella Fielding covers of New Order and Kylie Minogue - the two Meng & Ecker cuts wink at an era when Savoy supplied printed filth to many of Manchester’s ne’er-do-wells and was regularly raided by pious dibble. They’ve been defunct for a decade now, but we’ve been playing the super campy Hi-NRG of ‘Shoot Your Load’, starring a belting Rowetta vocal, regularly at The White Hotel since its inception, and it’s great to finally be able to point other mucky runts to this digital edition, as well as the lesser known piss play anthem ‘Golden Shower’.
Aside from the heaving might and howl of Diamanda Galás’ ‘Double-Barrel Prayer’, and some garage-punky muck in Minty’s foul mouther tirade ‘Useless Man’, or the psych rock of ‘Stairs’ by Christian Death, the rest is mostly given to much more atmospheric songcraft between Joey Arias’ piano draped rendition of ‘Good Morning Heartache’, a Coil-esque beauty ‘My Final Sunshine’ by Kabuki Sunshine, and of course, the clutch of ANOHNI songs hailing to their years in performance art collective Blacklips with Johanna Constantine, and including the gorgeous synth torchsong ‘Rapture’, and the naked room recording of ‘Love Letters’ performed as Fiona Blue.