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Blurt: The Factory Recordings.
(review from

Combining their four tracks from the A Factory Quartet compilation album in late 1980 and the live in Berlin album recorded for but not released by Factory the following year, The Factory Recordings brings together most of the earliest work of Blurt (the actual first single, "Get," was released by another label) to provide the curious listener with a peek into one of post-punk's most left-field -- but, as it turned out, longest-lived -- acts. Ted Milton's sax/barked vocal poetry approach was never designed to be conventional, and having almost grown up with rock & roll to start with -- he was 12 when Elvis first became a sensation, for instance -- brought his own individual perspective to the proceedings that eschewed "the Factory sound" for something far more shambling and anarchic, even more so than the work of then-labelmates Crawling Chaos.


On the studio tracks, especially the lengthy "Dyslexia," Milton relies on the steady pulse of an equally outré rhythm section -- Jake Milton on drums and Pete Creese on either guitar or trombone -- to vamp instrumentally and/or vocally as he chooses. If too structured to be called free jazz or improvisational, it's still a romp at the best of times -- "Some Come" isn't exactly James Chance or the Velvet Underground but sounds like it should belong on a bill with both, even if Milton's gasps and shouts aren't quite as fiery as Chance's were in comparison. The live tracks, covering both sides of the "Get" single as well as a version of "Dyslexia" plus other tracks, don't sound much different sonically than the studio selections, but show the band's fine spirit at work. LTM's liner notes unsurprisingly do the job as an excellent canned history of the early group for the curious.

by Ned Raggett

**** (four stars)

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