Thursday, May 14, 2009

Aztec Camera

Aztec Camera were a Scottish New Wave band from Glasgow. They were a sensitive, tuneful pop band formed in 1980 and centered around the then teenage singer-songwriter, Roddy Frame. Their album Love was among the nominations for Best British Album at the 1989 BRIT Awards.

The band's line-up changed numerous times in its first few years. The constant member has been guitarist / vocalist / singer-songwriter Roddy Frame. Founding members included Campbell Owens (bass) and Dave Mulholland (drums). Craig Gannon was a member from 1983 to 1984. Guitarist Malcolm Ross (formerly of Josef K and Orange Juice) joined the band in 1984, and played on the Knife album. By the time of their third album, Love (1987), Frame was the only de facto member of the band: this and future albums credited to Aztec Camera were actually performed by Frame and studio musicians hired on a track-by-track basis.

The band's first UK 7" single was released by Glasgow based indie label Postcard Records in March 1981, and contained the songs "Just Like Gold" and "We Could Send Letters". An acoustic version of the latter song appeared on the influential C81 compilation cassette, released by NME in early 1981. A second single, "Mattress Of Wire", was also the last Postcard Records release before the group signed for fellow independent record label, Rough Trade. U.S. releases were on Sire Records.

Aztec Camera's debut album, High Land, Hard Rain, was released in April 1983. The album was successful, gathering significant critical acclaim for its well-crafted, multi-layered pop. The band went on to release a total of six albums, although most of these were essentially written and played by Frame. The albums included Knife (1984), Love (1987), Stray (1990), Dreamland (1993) and Frestonia (1995).

After the release of Aztec Camera's sixth album, Frestonia, Frame finally decided to record under his own name, and left the major record label, WEA.

Popular songs by Aztec Camera include "Oblivious", "Still On Fire", "Walk Out to Winter", "Somewhere in My Heart", and "Good Morning Britain" (a duet with former The Clash guitarist Mick Jones). "Somewhere in My Heart", the second single from Love, remains their biggest hit, reaching #3 on the UK Singles Chart. "Good Morning Britain" was considered to be a comeback for them, as previous single "The Crying Scene" had only reached #70 in the UK.

A 'Best of' collection was released in 1999.


The Best of Aztec Camera
Including: Jump, The Crying Scene, Good Morning Britain, and more...
Buy album: - Tower Records

High Land, Hard Rain
Including: Back on Board, Down the Dip, Oblivious, and more...

Including: Just Like the USA, The Back Door to Heaven, The Birth of the True, and more...

Including: Get Outta London, Over My Head, Stray, and more...
Buy album: iTunes Music Store

Including: Method of Love, Beautiful Girl, On the Avenue, and more...
Buy album: iTunes Music Store - Rhapsody - Tower Records

Somewhere in My Heart
Including: Somewhere in My Heart, Somewhere in My Heart [Remix], Interview

Dream Sweet Dreams
Including: Dream Sweet Dreams, Let Your Love Decide [Live], Orchid Girl [Live], and more...

Including: One and One, Deep and Wide and Tall, Killermont Street, and more...

Oblivious [EP] [RT]
Including: Oblivious [Remix], Haywire, Orchid Girl

Covers & Rare
Including: Good Morning Britain [With Mick Jones][Live], Consolation Prize [With Edwyn Collins], Bad Education, and more..


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