Boomkat Product Review:
Arthur Russell and early Factory heads listen up! Smiling C rescue from obscurity a clutch of gems by Martin Hannett collaborator Steve Hopkins’ short-lived band The Bernhardts, a sort of missing link between Arthur, The Style Council and Orange Juice.
Quite the find, ‘Moonglow’ packs two cuts from the sought-after 1984 single ‘I Hear You Calling’, plus two previously acetate-only nuggets from 1983, all together on record for the first time. It’s all the work of Dr. Stephen A Hopkins, a one time member of The Invisible Girls with Martin Hannett (as found on Finders Keepers’ release of the ‘All Sorts of Heroes’ 7”), and co-producer/contributor to records by the likes of John Cooper Clarke, Nico, Happy Mondays, M*rrisey and many more.
At this point we’re not sure who else constitutes The Bernhardts, but it’s effectively Hopkins’ vehicle, and thus full of Manc pop moxie, hitting bullseye on the balmy and very Arthur Russell-esque jazz-funk-pop swerve of ‘Send Your Heart to Me’ as well as the breezier shimmy of ‘I Hear You calling’, and with proper fruity disco chops in ‘Crescent Moon’, plus a class streak of new wave pop recalling Talk Talk on ‘Love Breaks In.’