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THE SINGLES
Use it for yourself
Label: Off The Hip (Australia)
Catalogue No: (OTH71174)
Format: Double CD (jewel case)
Released: Oct 2012
Price: $ 28.00
 
The Singles - Use It For Yourself
The Singles started playing the Sydney inner city scene in the early 1980s in venues such as the Civic, Rock Garden, Chequers, Frenchs, the Paddington Green and the Heritage Hotel. Their sound was post punk art pop reminiscent of the Buzzcocks. The songs are simple, melodic, catchy and straight to the point pop.
Tracklisting: Disc 1 (Vinyl & demos)
  1. Someone That I Knew
  2. The Day
  3. Love Of Loves
  4. Sad Clown
  5. Stay
  6. If You'll Only
  7. The Perfect Girl
  8. Billy
  9. It Wasn't Really There
  10. What Was Wrong
  11. I'm Tired
  12. Run On A String
  13. How Does It Feel
  14. Maybe No One Knows
  15. Virgin
  16. Use It For Yourself
  17. Visit
  18. Since I Met You

Tracklisting: Disc 2 (Live at Caringbah Inn, April 1982)
  1. What I Want To Do
  2. Every Other
  3. Playground Of Love
  4. What Was Wrong
  5. Since I Met You
  6. Opening Doors
  7. Stay
  8. Just My Imagination
  9. Can We Play
  10. But Til Then
  11. Sleepless Nights
  12. Say Hello
  13. The Party
  14. Something's Not Right
  15. Uninvited Guests
  16. What Am I
  17. Sad Clown
"The Singles are a band I have always rated as highly likely to make it big. I find them one of the most charming pop groups around. The songs are inhabited by characters from broken homes, children whose fathers have died, boyfriends whose girlfriends have left them lonely and despairing. They tread the same general trail forged so admirably by the Buzzcocks and the Undertones, and though they have not scaled those dizzy heights of popdom there is every suggestion their best moments are still ahead of them." Roadrunner, 1981.

So wrote the ex-Riptides guitarist and music journalist Scott Matheson in the music magazine Roadrunner in early 1981. But like with The Saints, The Triffids, The Go-betweens and The Boys Next Door, the wider Australian music scene was not receptive, even hostile, to bands whose music didn't fit the commercial music industry mould that existed at the time. Many lesser bands went on to enjoy commercial success in Australia with vastly inferior songs. Many bands decamped and went to Europe. The Singles battled it out in Sydney striving for recognition and success.

The Singles started playing the Sydney inner city scene in the early 1980s in venues such as the Civic, Rock Garden, Chequers, Frenchs, the Paddington Green and the Heritage Hotel. Their sound was post punk art pop reminiscent of the Buzzcocks. The songs are simple, melodic, catchy and straight to the point pop. Songs such as Love of Loves, Stay, Perfect Girl, Sad Clown made instant connections to the young inner city Sydney audience who just missed mid 1970's punk scene.

In early 1980 the Singles release their first EP Love of Loves on Double Think Records. This EP immediately sold out. Later in 1980 the Singles released Someone That I Knew on Basilisk Records and this further cemented their sound and their audience. Someone That I Knew started getting solid airplay on the ABC's Sydney music station DoubleJay (2JJ). The Singles started to fill inner-city venues and booking agencies tried them in the large suburban beer barns where their post punk pop sound didn't go down with suburban audiences who wanted the Radiators, Chisel and the Angels and definitely not charming pop.

Undeterred The Singles continued to play the inner city while venturing out into the suburbs supporting the likes of Sunnyboys and InXS. They released the limited edition cassette singles Something's Not Right in 1981 and The Party in 1982. Their final single The Day was featured on the compilation Shake and Shout released by Survival Records in 1984.

This was a time when Sydney's rundown inner-city saw an explosion of creativity from a new generation of youth who inhabited the squats and cheap rent terraces of Darlinghurst, Chippendale and Newtown, This generation referenced a blend of mid 1970's nihilist British punk and the blistering attitude on 1960's American and Australian garage pop. It was a time when in both Sydney and Melbourne young musicians and artists were breaking the shackles held over the Australian music scene by commercial radio and record companies that controlled Australian music through the 1970s.

While the Singles received critical acclaim in the music press, enjoyed solid air play on 2JJ and a held a loyal and enthusiastic inner city following, wider commercial success eluded them. In mid 1983 they played their last show at the Sydney Graphic Arts Club in Chippendale just a few blocks away from the terrace where they formed four years earlier. Use it for yourself is an anthology of The Singles songs from their EP, single, cassette and compilation releases from 1980 to 1984.