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|The Sisters of Mercy
Andrew Eldritch & Co
This Goth Legend started in 1980, as Andrew Eldritch joined forces with Gary Marx, Craig Adams and the 'drum machine' Dr Avalanche! Between 1980 and 1984, the band released a set of singles and EPs topping the British Indies charts with songs like Body Electric, Adrenochrome, Alice, The Temple of Love, etc...In 1984, Wayne Hussey joined the group and the first full-length album was released in 1985: "First and Last and Always". This outstanding line-up of unmatched influential artists did not last long; in 1985 Wayne Hussey and Craig Adams left the group to form The Mission, Gary Marx joined the Skeletal Family's lead singer Anne-Marie to form Ghost Dance, and Andrew rushed to release an album under the name 'The Sisterhood' to prevent Wayne Hussey and Craig Adams from using this permutation of the sisters name for their debut. In 1987, Andrew Eldritch revived The Sisters of Mercy by teaming up with bassist Patricia Morrison and releasing Floodland, an album where keyboards layering and bass guitars defined and re-defined goth rock for generations to come.
In 1990, Andreas Bruhn, Tony James and Tim Bricheno (All About Eve) joined Andrew to release Vision Thing, a strong wave of heavy guitars appealing to hard rock lovers.
After the 1992 remix of The Temple Of Love with Ofra Haza, and the single Under the Gun in 1993, The Sisters did not release any new material, due to a binding contract between Andrew Eldritch and East-West record company. Throughout the past 6 years, the Sisters have composed and played in concerts several new unreleased songs. A new full-length album is expected to be in-work....and let's hope that it will be, once again, about character!
-- Said Sukkarieh, Musicfolio, 5/99
½ 1985: First And Last And Always
"The first album finally attained the group's long-sought clarity and sophistication and is nearly sublime in its pristine bleakness. (...) Eldritch's vocals--Jim Morrison meets David Bowie, slowed down to half-speed--are as gloriously gloomy as ever."
-- trouserpress.com"... First and Last and Always, an 80s goth extravaganza. (...) It opens with a song that brings about immediate thoughts of Depeche Mode and their early environmental awareness. Keyboards, drum machine, clipped lyrics. Eldritch sings his disgust, in his deep and broken voice, with the state of the world. Its a good (and safe) intro to what is perhaps one of the most complicated, varied albums to have come out of the 80s. With songs ranging from the danceable Rock and a Hard Place to the defeated, terrified Marian, this album appeals to all those with a dark mindset. Lost love (or should I say love lost?), emotional shields, yearning for things that were, and the two most potent escapes: drugs and sex. (...) We shall leave Eldritch, forever hiding himself behind his sunglasses and hats and coats, now. Leave him to the rumors of a new album and to his German tour. Leave content in the fact that an album this amazing can actually exist. "
-- LL Hager, members.tripod.com/~Golgoth/fla.html
1986: The Gift by The Sisterhood:
"A vague conglomeration formed by Andrew Eldritch [with Patricia Morrison, Lucas Fox, Alan Vega and James Ray] in 1985 to stop former Sisters of Mercy Wayne Hussey and Craig Adams from using the name. (...) In many ways it lays the groundwork for much that has since become known as industrial dance of the heavy electronic beat and keyboards variety. Jihad is in fact a driving beat, some words read from an AK-47 manual and a few keyboard flourishes here and there."
"Eldritch never made the same album twice, and Floodland stands as the best of the three full-length Sisters of Mercy albums (and they're all quite good, mind you). Floodland isn't quite goth, it isn't quite club, it isn't quite rock. It's a floating ambience of in-betweens, the entire album flows seamlessley, often with no breaks between the songs, and the album carries piano-driven ballads such as the beautiful '1959' every bit as well as could've-been hits like 'Lucretia My Reflection', which is the catchiest number on here, featuring a driving Patricia Morrison bassline and a chorus that was as much of a pop-rock-singalong as Andrew Eldritch ever got. All this variation in style never loses sight of the whole of the album, which is basically mood music with balls. (...) Floodland is worth checking out even to people who normally aren't into this kind of moody, 'goth' kinda stuff. Within it's genre, it's regarded as a pioneering masterpeice, and it deserves every bit of it's praise. "
-- Matt Stein, via Epinions.com, 10/01
¾ 1990: Vision Thing
"The guitars are more direct than they were on "Floodland" and there is far less emphasis on the layering of sound which characterised the last Sisters album. The keyboards are kept to a bare minimum, and the baritone voice of Eldritch is clear amid the storm.
The lyrics retain their usual oblique sub-texts, but there is a new directness of language on the surface. It has been noticed that there is no sense whatsoever of "victim" on the "Vision Thing" album. It is confident to the point of arrogance, commanding to the point of sheer callousness. An intellectual tour-de-force of beautiful cruelty."
¼ 1992: Some Girls Wander By Mistake
"The EP tracks are in order, but the order of the EPs is off. (In other words, The Damage Done and Home of the Hitmen, the first record, are together as a and b-sides, but they don't appear until later in the disc.) Perhaps all the better that this disc starts with Alice, an instantly catchy and driving goth classic. Midway through we get perhaps the best achievement of this album--Temple of Love Extended Version. Amazing--driving, dancy, deep, broad vocals from Eldritch. This is preceded by the Reptile House EP: 5 songs that are deep, dark, dark, and dark. Keep the knives away from yourself. Great songs. All in all the collection is very balances. This was basically put together so that fans didn't have to hunt down the original singles or buy shoddy bootlegs. A great idea. They cover Gimme Shelter and 1969... Sure, the sound quality on all of the tracks is not up to Floodland, of course, but there's a lot to appreciate here. Marvel at Eldritch's drumming on The Damage Done. He described himself as the worst drummer in Leeds, and...he's right. "
-- music fan from Brooklyn, NY, via amazon.com, 6/02
¾ 1993: A Slight Case of Overbombing: Greatest Hits, Vol 1
"...The gloominess becomes wearing but big cheese Andrew Eldritch can often pull it off by sheer force of personality...it's hard not to accord [the Sisters Of Mercy] a certain respect..."
Q Magazine (10/93, p.128)Includes the 1992 remix of The Temple Of Love featuring Ofra Haza and the previously unreleased Under the Gun.
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