AN-7069 Systems of Romance
Produced by Ultravox, Connie Plank, Dave Hutchins
Released on September 1978
no chart information
Find it at GEMM
AN-7069 cover
[high resolution scan]
 

T he Rolling Stone Guide could dismiss an entire career with one sentence. I always envied the awesome power of that. One line in particular stands out: For technocrats and energy brats. I forget who that was about, but I admired how it so neatly fenced in a very large number of us. Wasn’t every synthesizer band preaching technocracy? And these glammed-up kids who wore their Roxy Music and David Bowie affectations on their sleeves, sartorial and sullen, weren’t punks but poseurs. Gary Numan, Icehouse, OMD, Japan: technocrats and energy brats. Which didn’t preclude them from making some excellent, eye-opening music. What they did was take the intellectual and artistic advances of the German electronic movement (Tangerine Dream, Kraftwerk) and apply it to the human condition. It was romantic youth rejecting a dispassionate world with even deeper dispassion. It was a parable for modernism that showed nature and furniture, self and other were equally valid reference points in a world where personal identity could be easily lost. But mostly it was music that spoke to a neu (and neutered) generation. Rock and roll rattled the status quo, but Ultravox rejected experience altogether. “Just For A Moment,” “Dislocation,” “Quiet Men” and “Maximum Acceleration” were a new breed of rock song that spoke not to the invincibility of youth but to the invisibility of youth. As a kid who wanted nothing more than to be invisible, Systems of Romance spoke to me in a way that few albums did. I think everybody should listen to this, if just for a moment.

AN-7069 back cover AN-7069 lyric sleeve
AN-7069 back cover AN-7069 lyric sleeve

TRACK LISTING

  1. SLOW MOTION    3:21
  2. I CAN'T STAY LONG    4:13
  3. SOMEONE ELSES CLOTHES    4:19
  4. BLUE LIGHT    3:04
  5. SOME OF THEM    2:26
  6. QUIET MEN    4:03
  7. DISLOCATION    2:47
  8. MAXIMUM ACCELERATION    3:49
  9. WHEN YOU WALK THROUGH ME    4:10
  10. JUST FOR A MOMENT    3:03

    CD reissue bonus tracks
  11. CROSS FADE
  12. QUIET MEN

    All songs written by Ultravox

CREDITS

WARREN CANN -- drums, rhythm machine, voice
CHRIS CROSS -- synthesizer, voice
BILLY CURRIE -- keyboards, violin
JOHN FOXX -- voice, sleeve concept
ROBIN SIMON -- guitar, voice
Connie Plank -- engineer
Dave Hutchins -- engineer
Adrian Boot -- group photography

return to ULTRAVOX discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK/CAN September 1978 Island LP ILPS 9555 lyric sleeve
US December 1978 Antilles LP AN-7069 lyric sleeve
AUSL/NZ 1978 Island LP L36761  
GER 1978 Island LP 26453XOT  
JPN 1978 Island LP 20S-63  
UK   Island CD IMCD 148  
UK 2006 Island CDX IMCD-326 w. bonus tracks
EUR 2006 Polydor CDX 983795 w. bonus tracks
JPN 2006 Universal CDX UICY-93075 w. bonus tracks

 

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