Boomkat Product Review:
The 1987 debut of one of the great forgotten bands of the post punk, dark-industrial era remastered at Dubplates & Mastering and reissued in a beautiful gatefold edition by Forced Nostalgia. Tipped if yr into Raime, Stroom, Coil, Ike Yard, Throbbing Gristle, Bourbonese Qualk, early The The, New Order..
Pump were Andrew Cox and David Elliott, a pair of likeminded electronic music fiends who met at Brighton uni in '79. After staring a fanzine and a tape label the pair eventually began to record their own material (initially under the moniker MFH) and released several cassette albums typified by underground industrial strains inspired by Throbbing Gristle, Cabaret Voltaire, Faust and Heldon. They spent the middle of the '80s often geographically estranged, with David writing for the notorious Sounds magazine alongside David Tibet, and Andrew working in Cornwall. In '87 they finally recorded new material, making for their exceptional debut album under the Pump moniker - 'The Decoration of The Duma Continues', originally released on Andrew Hulme's Final Image label.
The album has languished in the out-of-print wilderness pretty much since it's release and was clearly influenced by the era that immediately preceded its release - capturing the vapour trails of the post-punk movement while fermenting industrial and electronic ideas that would go on to dominate their incredible, criminally overlooked second album "Sombrero Fallout". The album opens with "Dance Without Music", constructed around a spiralling synthline and skittering percussion somehow reminiscent of Cabaret Voltaire and the squashed anti-funk often heard on tracks by The Cure from the same era. But there is a much darker substance oozing out the pores of these tracks - and "A Veiled Woman" marks a watershed of sorts - taking a turn towards more unstable terrain with treated glass-bottle gamelan effects draping a veil of sadness and tension over inherently beautiful, original material. "A Sort Of Accident" goes even further towards establishing the stylistic links and aesthetics shared by Pump and some of their contemporaries, most notably - Coil.
Reviewed at the time of its initial release, the album was described by The Observer as "bad mood music" while Melody Maker said it sounded like "the clanging and abrasion of rusted and misaligned gears and ratchets..." - and it is precisely that slightly unhinged, brilliantly forward-thinking marriage of beauty and decay that makes 'The Decoration of The Duma Continues' stand out so brightly against the backdrop of the music released at the time. Pump, to our minds at least, really are one of the great forgotten bands of the era.