Boomkat Product Review:
Les Disques du Crepuscule presents Subway, a collection of singles by cult NYC duo Thick Pigeon, originally released on Crepuscule, Factory and Factory Benelux between 1981 and 1991.
Comprised of vocalist Stanton Miranda and instrumentalist Carter Burwell, Thick Pigeon emerged from the downtown New York artrock scene which also spawned Glenn Branca, Bush Tetras, DNA, Arthur Russell and Sonic Youth. Like their chosen name, the duo were typically atypical: Miranda was previously a dancer with the Marthe Graham ballet company, and Carter a film animator and Harvard fine arts/architecture graduate. Very much a studio project, the ‘group’ hardly ever performed live.
Poised and subtle debut single Subway appeared on Crepuscule in January 1981, a connection forged by Miranda’s partner Michael Shamberg. Dog followed a year later, along with wry Christmas single Jingle Bell Rock, before the duo switched to Factory Records, recording debut album Too Crazy Cowboys in Manchester with Stephen Morris and Gillian Gilbert of New Order producing. Released simultaneously on Factory and Factory US in 1984, the album was billed as “a walk through the civilisation of you soul”.
Having now embarked on a career scoring movies (becoming the Coen brothers’ composer of choice), Carter was absent from the next TP project, 1986 dance single Wheels Over Indian Trails, although Morris and Gilbert remained on board as guest musicians. However Miranda and Carter would reunite for a second (and final) leftfield pop album, Miranda Dali, issued by Crepuscule in 1991.
As well as singles Subway, Dog, Jingle Bell Rock, Jess + Bart and Wheels Over Indian Trails, TWI 351 also includes b-sides (Sudan, Tracy + Pansy), album highlights (Crime, Riding) and a second festive track, Blue Christmas, previously issued only on cassette as part of a Factory Christmas card in 1986.
Alongside Stephen Morris and Gillian Gilbert, the stellar cast of guests include Fred Szymanski (of Ike Yard), Ikue Mori (DNA), remixer John Robie, and even artist and event designer Jean-Paul Goude on backing vocals."