The The - Soul Mining
The The - Soul Mining

Thumped Album Club Week 33: The The – Soul Mining (1983)

Week 33 of Thumped Album Club features The The‘s 1983 debut, Soul Mining

Soul Mining is the debut album by British post-punk/synthpop band The The. Soul Mining was released in the UK on 21 October 198 on Some Bizzare Records and included versions of the UK singles “Uncertain Smile” which reached no. 68 in December 1982, “Perfect” which made no. 79 in February 1983, and “This Is the Day” which reached no. 71 in September 1983. The album peaked at number 27 in the UK album chart. It has appeared on several lists as one of the best albums of the 1980s.

The The - Soul Mining
The The – Soul Mining

Remember that three listens are required before commenting, which can be done further down the page or on the forum.

All previous Album Club selections can be found at https://thumped.com/tac.

  1. it's definitely engaging and fairly weird

    i've always had the impression/assumption that The The were some kind of light pop/rock band for yuppies, don't know why

  2. nooly

    it's definitely engaging and fairly weird

    i've always had the impression/assumption that The The were some kind of light pop/rock band for yuppies, don't know why

    kind of the same here. And I used to always confuse them with Talk Talk.

    A girl I worked with years back used to go on about this album. She gave me a copy but I didn't try too hard with it.

    That is all about to change. I shall give it a chance this week, after which I will do the following;

    – write a review on thumped
    – write an apology to that girl for not trying hard enough
    – write an apology to The The for owning an illegal copy of one of their albums.

    First listen coming up now.

  3. Pretty sure this was one of my mine. Is this a one vote wonder, @pete?

    This record meant a huge amount to me when I was little. My dad had the Infected tape in the car in the mid 80's and it fascinated me. I remember spotting this on cassette in Virgin on the quay's and taking a chance. I would have been 12 maybe. I found it utterly beguiling and intense and overwhelming, like a mate whispering in your ear how fucked life really is, misery follows misery etc. Just the stuff for a confused chap in the midst of puberty. I used to lay on my bed holding my ghetto blaster above my head, trying to soak in as much of the album as I could.

    I absolutely can't be objective about this record, I'm fairly sure it is a masterpiece, but it's way too wound up in personal history for me.

    I did used to write out the lyrics on my copybook in first year and pretend they were my own to try and impress a girl. Sorry Jaycinta!

  4. dudley

    Pretty sure this was one of my mine. Is this a one vote wonder, @pete?

    This or another The The album could have been on my list. I didn't keep a record of what I submitted.

  5. Never liked this. But I guess I'm going to have to listen to it again now. Sigh. And I still haven't been able to bring myself to putting on Rumours. A difficult weekend ahead perhaps.

  6. MacDara

    It's not really the first The The album. Johnson made one for 4AD before this, released under his own name but subsequently reissued as a The The record. That might give a better idea of where it's coming from. (I'll get around to listening at some point.)

    Burning Blue Soul isn't really a The The album though. Even when it was reissued first (in the same year as this album), it was as Matt Johnson. It's probably an academic thing to say whether one man's solo electronic album is a different creative thing to his one man (in writing)/band (in performance) that came later but BBS sounds completely different to The The. It's kind of like calling Michael Gira's Drainland a Swans album or Dylan Carlson's solo releases Earth albums. Yeah, the creative driving force behind them all are the same in each case but they're given different names because they represent different things. Johnson freely admits renaming BBS was an act of convenience, not because it was a lost The The album.

  7. now i've got over my confusion about there being another talk talk record, will give it a go.

    I never get three listens. I work with too much sounds to listen to lots more sounds oddly.

  8. Anthony

    I always liked the band name.

    And the strange album covers.
    The covers are so familiar from browsing in every record store ever.
    This is my first time listening to them.

  9. Mormon Nailer

    And the strange album covers.
    The covers are so familiar from browsing in every record store ever.
    This is my first time listening to them.

    I think all the art is by his brother.

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