Wire - 154 (1979) (1 Viewer)

pete

chronic procrastinator
Staff member
Since 1999
Joined
Nov 14, 1999
Threads
6,888
Messages
53,444
Location
iPanopticon
Website
thumped.com
5.00 star(s) Rating: 5.00/5 2 Votes
Title: 154
Artist: Wire
Released: 1979

Tracks:
1 - I Should Have Known Better - 3:52
2 - Two People in a Room - 2:09
3 - The 15th - 3:04
4 - The Other Window - 2:07
5 - Single K.O. - 2:22
6 - A Touching Display - 6:55
7 - On Returning - 2:05
8 - A Mutual Friend - 4:26
9 - Blessed State - 3:28
10 - Once Is Enough - 3:23
11 - Map Ref. 41°N 93°W - 3:36
12 - Indirect Enquiries - 3:34
13 - 40 Versions - 3:27
14 - Song 1 - 3:02
15 - Get Down, Parts I & II - 4:27
16 - Let's Panic Later - 3:20
17 - Small Electric Piece - 3:31

Overview:
154 is the third album by the English post-punk band Wire, released in 1979.
The album is so named because the band had played 154 gigs in their career at the time of the album's release.
Pitchfork listed 154 as 85th best album of the 1970s.
 

nuke terrorist

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Joined
Dec 21, 2004
Threads
10
Messages
1,054
Location
'north munster'
their best LP.
a landmark of the era with great production by Mike Thorne.
a totally cutting edge rock record released by a major label -
when did that last happen ?
super clever but instantly accessible songs with seemingly oblique lyrics which
make perfect sense when you know what the song is about.

so many great future ideas inspired by this record.

also recommend the On The Box DVD/CD which is a an hour long
live performance on Rockpalast on German TV from early 1979.
it mostly features Chairs Missing songs and versions of the as yet 154
unreleased songs.

another cracker is Colin Newman's first LP A-Z from 1980 which picks up where
154 left off and is nearly as great.


EDIT:
PiL's Metal Box, also from 1979, deserves a thread at some stage.
 
Last edited:

pavlos

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Joined
Aug 21, 2004
Threads
47
Messages
3,254
Location
dublin
Nice one, this is probably the one I listen to least of the first three.
 

prefuse

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 15, 2007
Threads
198
Messages
5,310
I have pink flag & chairs missing...but have not heard this one.
 

Cornu Ammonis

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Contributor
Joined
Feb 1, 2011
Threads
30
Messages
6,940
Location
Dublin
Website
brainwashed.com
Incredible album, especially coming after two perfect albums like Pink Flag and Chairs Missing. This would be my favourite of theirs (though I have to say that everything after 154 never did it for me like the first three did). More thoughts later.
 

hermie

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Joined
Mar 26, 2003
Threads
111
Messages
6,631
Location
blemmer
Website
Visit site
This was the first one of theirs that I bought back in the day. Which would usually put it on top in a close race more often than not but I actually think with a clear head the first two are better. Chairs Missing is my favourite. Will root it out when I get home and slap it on.
 

Lili Marlene

Fast as You Can
Contributor
Joined
Oct 14, 2002
Threads
290
Messages
26,862
Location
Way beyond the Rubicon

GARYXKNIFEDX

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Joined
Feb 5, 2003
Threads
721
Messages
18,651
Website
Visit site
Turns out I like this wire record much much less than I thought. Doesn't sound like the same band that did the first two at all.
 

nuke terrorist

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Joined
Dec 21, 2004
Threads
10
Messages
1,054
Location
'north munster'
check out the live versions on the 1979 Rockpalast gig if you don't
like the production i.e. no electronics.
also Rockpalast version of 'Mercy' off Chairs Missing is particularly stunning.

Turns out I like this wire record much much less than I thought. Doesn't sound like the same band that did the first two at all.
 

travispickle

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Joined
Jun 21, 2006
Threads
88
Messages
3,191
Location
dublin
I gave this two spins back to back last night. The only Wire album I have is Chairs Missing, which I love. I shouldn't say 154 was a surprise, given that it moves on from the soundscapes of Chairs, but it was a surprise.

What surprised me was its heaviness and its almost unbearable tension. I was impressed by its dive-bombing guitars, scratching, scraping percussion, its vocal yelps and screams; at one stage I thought i could hear what sounded like the squawk of seagulls, but that might actually have been coming from outside.

Tracks that stood out for me were The Other Window, A Touching Display, The 15th, Map Ref, Indirect Enquiries - feck it, probably the whole album. I don't always pay much attention to lyrics, but Wire's are never short of head-scratchingly brilliant; often coming across like mini-short situationist stories rather than anything as crass and low-brow as "pop" lyrics. Mad to think that Map Ref was the single from this album; nothing on it comes anywhere near what I'd regard as a single release. The only negative for me is the lack of a great melodic song, like an "Outdoor miner" or a "Kidney Bingos", but perhaps that misses the point of this record.

I'm looking forward to hearing it again.
Incidentally Wire feature in the current issue of The Wire.
Can anyone recommend any later Wire albums? I believe The Ideal Copy is good, and one called Send?
Cheers.
 
Music information in first post provided by The AudioDB

Create an account or login to comment

You must be a member in order to leave a comment

Create account

Create a thumped.com account. It's easy!

Log in

Already have an account? Log in here.

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

Support thumped.com

Support thumped.com and upgrade your account

Upgrade your account now to disable all ads... If we had any... Which we don't right now.

Upgrade now

Latest posts

Trending Threads

Latest threads

Top