Thursday, July 8, 2010

Models - The Pleasure Of Your Company


In the early 80s, I was lead singer in a covers band, playing mostly Australian songs with sets designed for pub crowds more interested in drinking than anything else.  But we took ourselves seriously enough to want to make our shows interesting and updated our set regularly.  We tried to add a few Models songs to our set but gave these away for less stylistic numbers (another way of saying we made them sound shit).

The Pleasure Of Your Company, for me, was the pinnacle album of Model's career.  After this one came the much more accessible and popular Out Of Mind Out Of Sight, which saw a big change in both songs and sound for the band.  Out the door were the more avant garde tracks to be replaced by fairly straight new wave rock.  I wasn't devastated but I was very disappointed.

I still have the 12" vinyl version of I Hear Motion somewhere, with the dub recording on the B side but hearing it on this is probably more than enough.  For me, it was more about the album tracks anyway - songs like No Shoulders No Head, Watch Your Mouth and God Bless America - great songs made vital by the times. And while the sound might be dated (the snare sound particularly), it is also arguably one of the best recording of the time too.



While it's not the longest distance I've ever travelled to see a band, the Models are right up there in the long-distance stakes.  Your see, in 1985 I was living in Bendigo, inland Victoria and about 100 years away from civilization.  In reality it was about 150 kilometres from Melbourne and yes, occasionally we would go to Melbourne for the evening and then drive home.  Ah, youth.

Not that I saw the Models in Melbourne.  No, the road trip to Shepparton is about 100 ks from Bendigo and I went there with my friend Jacquie (who was a serial fantasist who convinced me she'd been married to a wife-beater who managed to kill himself drink-driving but then this turned out to be all in her head, but that's another story).  This was on the Out of Mind, Out of Sight tour, which was post-Pleasure of Your Company.  I don't remember much about the gig, apart from us hanging around afterwards and seeing lead singer James Freud getting something to eat in the pub bistro, accompanied by his then-girlfriend (I guess) who was possibly the most attractive Asian girl I've ever seen.

Anyhow, listening to this album certainly brought that back to me, but while I know YourZ has a soft spot for this album, it's just so - 80s!  In fact, listening to the guitar/drum/synth sound I thought - hey, that's INXS only not as good - and of course producer Nick Launay went on the produce The Swing for INXS the following year.  While the first song, I Hear Motion, is still pretty good, the rest of it just sounds dated to me.



  1. Yours: agree whole heartedly, good call.

    Mine: while I don’t agree with the verdict, I will say kudos on the review. Can’t remember the last music review I read that combined a balanced examination with references to hot Asian chicks, road trips and spousal abuse in three short paragraphs.


  2. Hey M, Mine knows succinct well, unlike rambling me. Thanks for reading!