It was in the interests of the larger labels to make their product look like a bootleg,and/or a DIY release. The cheapness of the artwork and price,(i think it was £2:49), attracted this fifteen year old with three quid in his pocket to buy said product. It was my first introdution to the dark world of Cabaret Voltaire and Industrial musick. And what a bargain! This was the "Faust Tapes" of the post punk era, eye-opening.
Dark,murky,and lo-fi, this was not gonna trouble the uk top 30,but undoubtedly sold well in excess of 20,000 copies....which these days would make it a number one LP.
Cope describes the sounds contained within these grooves perfectly below:
"Live at the YMCA is intense, in a way only really rivaled by Bob Dylan's live '66 bootleg and the 30 Minutes Over Brussels EP by Suicide. Although the audience is more appreciative here than on either of those, there is a sense of menace and bile that few artists have ever looked to release as a live album. And to end the album on the experimental noisefest that is "Baader Meinhof", a tribute to or comment on the German terrorists from the 70s, took some guts, in my book.
So, whilst not confrontational -the at first quite quiet (disconcerted, maybe?) audience seems to quickly succumb to the dark charms of Cabaret Voltaire- Live at the YMCA is dark and aggressive, uncompromising and sullen like the artists themselves were. It wasn't put out to please or get you head-banging (hence the sound quality), but rather hit its audience in the gut and demonstrate the full, snarling fury of an average Cabs gig. These aren't showmen, they're fiercely anti-rock, anti-frills. But it is powerful, pulsating with suppressed energy and hidden menace. And, it is also one of the very few live albums to document the post punk period and the omnipresent anti-rock, anti-showbiz, pro-experimentation mentality that was streaking across Britain at the time. Seeing as PiL, Joy Division and Throbbing Gristle all missed the boat when it came to live albums (PiL's post-everyone except Lydon one was a disaster)#, thank God Cabaret Voltaire were out there letting us know the abuse they were heaping on their audiences. Who seemed to enjoy it and I bet were actually dancing."
#The teardrop exploder obviously forgot "Paris Au Printemps" (1980)!....it was crap anyway.Also he seems unaware that Throbbing Gristle released virtually every gig they did on cassette!(see earlier in this blog for downloads, and soon posting the TG live box)....not such an expert on 'post punk' as he leads us to believe
DOWNLOAD YMCA HERE!