SEVERED HEADS - "DEAD EYES OPENED" 12"
Severed Heads are one of the longest surviving bands to emerge from the Australian post-punk independent music scene. They began in Sydney in 1979, incorporating elements of 'industrial' noise-generation, tape cutting & looping and electronic sound synthesis. As the project developed song-structures and vocals were employed in a more-or-less recognizable mutant electro pop style. After many line-up changes featuring Gary Bradbury and psychedelic guitarist Simon Knuckey, Severed Heads was the vehicle for composer Tom Ellard.
By 1983 they released a C-60 cassette called “Since The Accident” that grabbed the attention of Ink Records, a subsidiary of Virgin in the UK. Ellard added a throwaway track at the last minute to fill out the cassette, not wanting to leave an unseemly gap on a C60 tape. This track, “Dead Eyes Opened” was catchy enough to get a lot of airplay on the main non-commercial radio station in Sydney. The band was asked to make this song into a 12” single. For this extended version, Tom Ellard and producer Patrick Gibson went to M Squared studio and passed the multitrack through various EQ and delays. “Dead Eyes Opened” features lyrics from a radio program narrated by Edgar Lustgarten, a crime journalist from England. They reference an actual double murder case that occurred in 1924 calling to mind the gruesome imagery of Hannibal Lecter. The rhythms are made by a TR-808 drum machine and an SH-1 synthesizer. A KORG PolySix did the rising wafty sound and strings. The load solo was a Casiotone run through an Octaver foot pedal. On the B-side are two solo compositions “Bullet” and “Mount” that Ellard recorded at Terse Tapes in 1982.
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