SC Distributon

Title
Dead Men Tell No Tales
Artist
Label
Release Date
2014-08-05

Nikki Sudden and the Jacobites: Dead Men Tell No Tales

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

Dead Men Tell No Tales takes a stripped-down turn with plaintive lyrical confessions as pretty as they are prescient, summoning Syd Barrett's wild spirit through a séance of simple reverb burbles and acoustic incantations. Front-and-center vocals recounting love, loss and death's lurking presence are presented against airy guitar shimmer in a demented yin and yang seemingly forecasting the scarf-swathed, underground dandy man's abrupt fall nearly 20 years later. In the midst of such weighty tomes are less downtrodden peeks into the studio, where Sudden and his Jacobites are caught on tape in a few joyful fits and starts, adding another complex layer to this celebrated post-punk.

In founding Swell Maps, the post-punk prefacing Birmingham art-snots, Nikki Sudden and his drumming brother Epic Soundtracks charted new territory for racket and corrosive guitar. But after folding Swell Maps at the dawn of the '80s, Nikki Sudden plowed through another decade's worth of terrifically fertile ground. Drawing on his devotion to the Rolling Stones and T. Rex - alongside guitarist Dave Kusworth as Jacobites, plus a cheekily named cohort of British sidemen - Nikki Sudden cut a string of raw, inspired rock 'n' roll records, etched with double-edged travel melancholia and hard-bitten punk dejection.

LP  $20.99    
Title
Texas
Artist
Label
Release Date
2014-07-15

Nikki Sudden and the Jacobites: Texas

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

In a year when overproduced rock-fluff flooded radio waves, Texas - Sudden's 1986 solo debut for Creation - blasted through the saccharin for a damaged and masterful invocation at the imperfect alters of Chilton and Bolan, sonic influences the Brit bore proudly on his velvet sleeve throughout the course of his polarizing prolificacy. As the increasingly splintered Rolling Stones cultivated "Harlem Shuffle" cover cheese, the former Jacobite leader looked to the ragged Exile On Main St. and Sticky Fingers roots of his icons for a raw, 12-song predication melding tender jangle and staggering swagger. Widely considered Sudden's solo magnum opus, Texas is an exquisite mélange of the off-kilter sub-terrestrial songwriter. In founding Swell Maps, the post-punk prefacing Birmingham art-snots, Nikki Sudden and his drumming brother Epic Soundtracks charted new territory for racket and corrosive guitar. But after folding Swell Maps at the dawn of the '80s, Nikki Sudden plowed through another decade's worth of terrifically fertile ground. Drawing on his devotion to the Rolling Stones and T. Rex--alongside guitarist Dave Kusworth as Jacobites, plus a cheekily named cohort of British sidemen - Nikki Sudden cut a string of raw, inspired rock 'n' roll records, etched with double-edged travel melancholia and hard-bitten punk dejection.

LP  $20.99    
Title
Waiting On Egypt
Artist
Label
Release Date
2014-01-21

Nikki Sudden: Waiting On Egypt

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

For Waiting On Egypt, Nikki Sudden’s 1982 solo debut for Abstract Records, the Birmingham post-punk cut back on the skronk and clatter of his own latter-day Swell Maps. Unused Maps material received Sudden resurrection and pared-down guitar propellant, while Nikki’s new ideas moved confidently in a Bolan direction. Elsewhere, pained homage is paid to early Stones gem “I’d Much Rather Be With The Boys,” recast in withdrawn piss and vinegar.

LP  $17.99    
Title
Bible Belt
Artist
Label
Release Date
2014-01-21

Nikki Sudden: Bible Belt

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

Nikki Sudden’s second LP, released in 1983 by Flicknife Records, marked his first collaboration with writer/guitarist Dave Kusworth, the alliance destined to bring Jacobites to record buying publics on both Atlantic coasts. On The Bible Belt, a diverse clutch of Sudden songs stands in rock reverence to Sudden saints, from Bowie slink and Dylanesque strum to the mandolin post-punk of “Missionary Boy.”

LP  $17.99    
Title
Jacobites
Artist
Label
Release Date
2014-01-21

Nikki Sudden & Dave Kusworth: Jacobites

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

Dual guitars announce “Big Store” and 1984’s Jacobites, originally on Glass Records, the first official appearance of Nikki Sudden and Dave Kusworth under that imprimatur—and its direct allusion to British royal lineage of yesteryear. The matching LP trafficked in dramatic rock classicism: vital, shambolic, anchored by acoustic strumming and a healthy obsession with plaintive Dylan phrasings. Songwriting swung hard at Stewart/Wood tropes, while Sudden & Kusworth took grim new looks at the same hills Mick and Keith had long since rolled past.

LP  $17.99    
Title
The Truth Doesn't Matter
Artist
Label
Release Date
2006-10-10

Nikki Sudden: The Truth Doesn't Matter

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

The Truth Doesn't Matter is Nikki Sudden’s final album. Completed just a week before he left for his final American tour in March of 2006, there could not be a more perfect swan song for a man whose personal life and rock & roll life knew no boundaries. Nikki was glowing with excitement when he flew across the Atlantic for his final US tour. Not only was he ready to tour, but he was so pleased with the new album he had in his satchel, and had just completed his autobiography to boot. If Nikki’s 49 well-lived years and 30+ years making music publicly could be summed up in any way, shape or form, it was in the two documents he had under his arm - one compact disc and one manuscript. While we may have to wait a while longer for the latter, we can now bask in the wonder of the former.

With all sentimentality aside, we will say that The Truth Doesn’t Matter is the best album Nikki has made in over 20 years. But knowing that Nikki was never one to put sentimentality aside, we will unabashedly employ it when we assert that this is the best album of Nikki Sudden’s career. Recorded in Berlin in the latter months of 2005, it was made on a steady diet of later period Marc Bolan glam, Rolling Stones’ honky blues, Bobby Womack’s soiled R&B, and ‘70s disco comps (with some repeated Isley Brothers doses). While the fifteen tracks on the album show these influences, more than anything, they reflect the flamboyance and wonderful character of a man who seems to have come from another time - a poet whose passion for the written word and delight in its expression in multiple forms was his life’s dedication. This album is a celebration of music and friendship, and just seeps with Nikki’s love for life. Listen closely and you may hear the hoofbeats approaching in this poet’s head on album closer “All This Buttoning and Unbuttoning”. Enjoy. He did.

MP3  $9.99     CD  $12.99    
Title
Treasure Island
Artist
Label
Release Date
2004-10-05

Nikki Sudden: Treasure Island

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

Nikki Sudden's first proper album since 1998’s Red Brocade, Treasure Island is a stunning achievement. It includes Sudden’s best songwriting in twenty years and boasts an all-star line-up of rock & roll hall of famers Ian McLagan (the Faces) and Mick Taylor (the Rolling Stones), as well as Terry Miles (Bernard Butler), Dave Kusworth (Jacobites), and Anthony Thistlethwaite (the Waterboys). With his motley band of expatriates exiled to Germany The Last Bandits (John Clifford Barry on bass and Stephane Doucerain on drums), Sudden & Co. crossed the German border into the UK and set up shop at John Rivers’ WSRS studio in Leamington Spa, a home away from home where Sudden has recorded a vast majority of his work during his extensive 30-year career — which spans his pioneering early work as a founder of the Swell Maps (whose two studio albums are being reissued on Secretly Canadian in late October), his albums with the revered Jacobites, over a dozen solo albums and the dark masterpiece Kiss You Kidnapped Charabanc, his 1987 collaboration with Rowland S. Howard. “In true pirate tradition [Treasure Island] nails its colours firmly to the mast. Sure, there’s a powerful Stones influence on 'House of Cards', but it’s Mick Taylor himself guesting on guitar; and if elsewhere there’s an enthusiastic nod in the direction of The Faces, well, yep, that’s Ian McLagan on keyboards. BJ Cole and ex-Waterboy Anthony Thistlewaite show up on pedal steel and sax, and there’s even a female choir. Despite the star guests, it’s always Nikki’s album — one part Bolan swagger to two parts Keith Richards riffs — and it’s one of his best.” — Mojo

MP3  $9.99    
Title
The Ragged School
Artist
Label
Release Date
2002-10-01

Nikki Sudden & Dave Kusworth's Jacobites: The Ragged School

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

Nikki Sudden's & Dave Kusworth's Jacobites first found themselves in the American spotlight in 1986, when Paul Westerberg of the Replacements turned his then label Twin/Tone onto the Jacobites' first two albums JACOBITES and ROBESPIERRE'S VELVET BASEMENT. Twin/Tone in turn expressed their enthusiasm by introducing the American masses to Sudden & Kusworth with THE RAGGED SCHOOL -- those who weren't already turned onto the ex-Swell Maps frontman's work through the British press and import shops, that is. That now classic collection of songs (taken from those first two albums as well as their debut EP) met wide fanfare in the press and among fans, but due to a lack of touring in the States and the fact that the Jacobites did not deliver a follow-up for over a decade, the band - and the albums - slipped away from the public's memory. Now, almost 20 years later, this classic collection is made available again in expanded form with 10 bonus tracks which make the Jacobites '80s collection complete (with these extra b-sides and compilation tracks, every single Jacobites song released during the decade has been made available on the Secretly Canadian reissues). Original release dates: THE RAGGED SCHOOL LP (Twin/Tone, 1986)

Release date: 08/20/02

MP3  $9.99     CD  $11.00    
Title
Groove / Crown of Thorns
Artist
Label
Release Date
2002-08-20

Nikki Sudden: Groove / Crown of Thorns

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

GROOVE was Sudden's last official album of the '80s (as well as his final for Creation). Recorded with his band The French Revolution, it is probably Sudden's grittiest outting. This reissue includes outtakes and his contributions to the Neil Young and Nick Drake tribute albums ("Captain Kennedy" and "Time Has Told Me", respectively), as well as the video for "Great Pharoah." Considered by many to be the dark horse favorite in Sudden's body of work, CROWN OF THORNS is the Italian-released live collection which was originally released in 1988 and was available outside of Italy in only scant quantities and at import prices. It was organized with the acoustic solo set on the A-side and the electric full band set on the B-side. The reissue, which has been expanded to include an additional 6 bonus tracks as well as a live video of "Jump On Jack", includes Sudden originals along with covers of tunes by T. Rex and the Rolling Stones Original release dates: GROOVE CD/LP (Creation, March 1989) CROWN OF THORNS LP (Crazy Mannequin, November 1988)

Release date: 10/20/02

Title
Kiss You Kidnapped Charabanc / Live In Augsburg
Artist
Label
Release Date
2002-08-20

Nikki Sudden & Rowland S. Howard: Kiss You Kidnapped Charabanc / Live In Augsburg

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

Nikki Sudden and Rowland S. Howard first met while Howard was touring Europe in 1985 with his band Crime & The City Solution (along with his band mate and Sudden's late-brother Epic Soundtracks). Howard ended up playing on Sudden's third solo album "TEXAS" and they eventually recorded their dark opus KISS YOU KIDNAPPED CHARABANC together in 1987 for the Creation label. This extended reissue includes THE WEDDING HOTEL EP plus the outtake "French Revolution Blues." It also includes an incredible and never-before-released 12-song live set from September 18, 1987 from Augsburg, Germany featuring the line-up of Sudden on guitar and vocals, Howard on guitar and vocals, Desperate (of the Gun Club) on drums, and Duncan Sibbald on bass. KISS YOU KIDNAPPED CHARABANC LP (Creation, October 1987) THE WEDDING HOTEL EP (Creation, August 1987)

Release date: 08/20/02

MP3  $12.99    
Title
Nikki Sudden & Dave Kusworth's Jacobites
Artist
Label
Release Date
2002-02-12

Nikki Sudden & Dave Kusworth's Jacobites: Nikki Sudden & Dave Kusworth's Jacobites

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

Nikki Sudden & Dave Kusworth's Jacobites first found themselves in the American spotlight in 1986, when Paul Westerberg of the Replacements turned his then label Twin/Tone onto the Jacobites' first two albums JACOBITES and ROBESPIERRE'S VELVET BASEMENT. Twin/Tone in turn expressed its enthusiasm by introducing the American masses to Sudden & Kusworth with THE RAGGED SCHOOL -- those who weren't already turned onto the ex-Swell Maps frontman's work through the British press and import shops, that is. That now classic collection of songs (taken from those first two albums as well as their first EP) met wide fanfare in the press and among fans, but due to a lack of touring in the States and the fact that the Jacobites did not deliver a follow-up for over a decade, the band -- and the albums -- slipped away from the public's memory. Now, almost 20 years later, these classic albums are made available again as proper albums in expanded form as part of the Secretly Canadian Nikki Sudden reissue campaign. Aside from 20+ page booklets of photos, liner notes and complete lyrics, each of the two titles has been expanded to include bonus tracks. JACOBITES now contains the four-song SHAME FOR THE ANGELS EP in its entirety. ROBESPIERRE'S VELVET BASEMENT has been expanded to a double-disc set in order to fully represent it as the double-album as it was initially conceived and recorded, not to mention an additional 3 bonus tracks. Reissues release date: February 12, 2002. Original release dates: SHAME FOR THE ANGELS 12" EP (Pawn Hearts, July 1984) JACOBITES LP (Glass Records, March 1984) ROBESPIERRE'S VELVET BASEMENT LP (Glass Records, August 1985)

Release date: 02/12/02

MP3  $9.99     CD  $11.00    
Title
Waiting on Egypt / Bible Belt
Artist
Label
Release Date
2001-10-29

Nikki Sudden: Waiting on Egypt / Bible Belt

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

As a founding member of the much lauded '70s group, Swell Maps, Nikki Sudden, together with his brother, Epic Soundtracks, helped define a new form of musical freedom and experimentation which helped usher in the post-punk revolution. After the demise of the Swell Maps at the dawn of the '80s, Sudden enjoyed a very fertile period in which he began releasing solo albums, as well as albums with Dave Kusworth as the Jacobites, and the monumental collaboration with Rowland S. Howard (the Birthday Party, Crime & The City Solution). Drawing on the sounds of the Rolling Stones and T. Rex, Sudden made some of the most raw and inspired albums full of double-edged melancholia and twentieth century malaise this side of Neil Young & Crazy Horse and Johnny Thunders. The Secretly Canadian reissue campaign of Sudden's entire recorded output from the '80s covers ten full-length albums, which includes each of his eight proper full-lengths from that time period plus the classic THE RAGGED SCHOOL (the collection which Twin/Tone used to introduce Sudden and the Jacobites to American record buyers) and the ultra-rare Italian-pressed CROWN OF THORNS lp. Each of the ten full-lengths (some of which come packaged as a pair in a double disc set) has been fully remastered, comes with new liner notes, and has been expanded to include non-album B-sides, EPs and previously unreleased material (including the SHAME FOR THE ANGELS EP, LOST IN A SEA OF SCARVES, and WEDDING HOTEL EP, to name but a few). Also available for the first time are some of Sudden's commercial videos as enhanced cd content, and an audio recording of a 1987 live performance in Augsburg, Germany, with Rowland S. Howard. Many of the ten titles have been unavailable -- and never before on cd -- since they were initially released, and those that have seen the light of day since their initial release were so hastily put together that it may well have been better to leave them out of print (re-packaged titles were riddled with such reissue faux pas as mis-titled songs, unfortunately altered cover artwork, and missing album credits and photos). Given that none of Sudden's work from the '80s has been adequately available for the greater part of the past decade or more, plus the fact that the ten albums represented in this reissue campaign were initially released by almost as many record labels, it's no wonder that Sudden has not enjoyed as much recognition as he richly deserves based on the body of work he has put forth. It is, however, a great shame. Certainly for a decade that saw some of rock's most important voices either fall silent or grow as aesthetically barren as such icons -- and Sudden influences -- as the Rolling Stones (who opened the decade with the triumphant TATTOO YOU but then went nearly invisible, or some would argue creatively vacant, for most of the rest of the '80s) and Neil Young (who spent most of the '80s opting for style over substance, mired in his genre-exploration program), it's fascinating to note that Sudden was plowing forth with the best material of his career unbeknownst to the hungry world of rock fans who would have rabidly embraced him had Sudden not been lurking so low beneath their radar. Yes, in retrospect, Sudden's work from this period sounds so vital, and resounds with such fresh clarity in comparison to the din being created by the fallen idols of the generation which preceded him. Well it's high time that Sudden is recognized for the incredible talent that he is: a true "rock 'n roll fugitive", or, as Andy Levein wrote, an "illusive rogue treading the periphery of the rock mainstream." "Why Nikki Sudden? Why now? The almost moribund fascination with '80s musical culture is a reminder that that wasn't all about vocoders and skinny noowave ties. The aftermath of UK punk and the arrival of the demonic Margaret Thatcher turned Britain into a gray land of unemployment and social misery. Aside from Joy Division, it was the Swell Maps, Rowland S. Howard, The Jacobites, and Sudden who made the darkness audible. The foppish attitude and ambiguous sexuality of Sudden and his cohorts never sat well with Swell Maps fans. But Nikki Sudden's delicate, angry 'post-punk' pop songwriting is so perfectly flawed, it's almost painful to hear, and yet he has crafted dozens of songs between 1982 and the present, working with his brother Epic Soundtracks and many others. The long, messy hair, paisley scarves, and Oscar Wilde-ish dandyisms from the Creation years (1986 on) is what made Sudden stand out from his peers. The lyrics to gorgeous threnodies such as "Jangle Town" from Texas, which presaged more British pop bands than you've had hot dinners, are alive with a loneliness that is nearly palpable. In his hands, the guitar was an instrument that could be a circular saw one moment and a prayer wheel the next. "Death Is Hanging Over Me", which appears on both TEXAS and DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES resembles Ry Cooder or Townes Van Zandt as much as The Chameleons. Sudden's music was precocious in that it was made for a time that was yet to come." - Tim Haslett, Other Music

Release date: 10/29/01

Title
Texas / Dead Men Tell No Tales
Artist
Label
Release Date
2001-10-29

Nikki Sudden: Texas / Dead Men Tell No Tales

ALBUM DESCRIPTION

As a founding member of the much lauded '70s group, Swell Maps, Nikki Sudden, together with his brother, Epic Soundtracks, helped define a new form of musical freedom and experimentation which helped usher in the post-punk revolution. After the demise of the Swell Maps at the dawn of the '80s, Sudden enjoyed a very fertile period in which he began releasing solo albums, as well as albums with Dave Kusworth as the Jacobites, and the monumental collaboration with Rowland S. Howard (the Birthday Party, Crime & The City Solution). Drawing on the sounds of the Rolling Stones and T. Rex, Sudden made some of the most raw and inspired albums full of double-edged melancholia and twentieth century malaise this side of Neil Young & Crazy Horse and Johnny Thunders. The Secretly Canadian reissue campaign of Sudden's entire recorded output from the '80s covers ten full-length albums, which includes each of his eight proper full-lengths from that time period plus the classic THE RAGGED SCHOOL (the collection which Twin/Tone used to introduce Sudden and the Jacobites to American record buyers) and the ultra-rare Italian-pressed CROWN OF THORNS lp. Each of the ten full-lengths (some of which come packaged as a pair in a double disc set) has been fully remastered, comes with new liner notes, and has been expanded to include non-album B-sides, EPs and previously unreleased material (including the SHAME FOR THE ANGELS EP, LOST IN A SEA OF SCARVES, and WEDDING HOTEL EP, to name but a few). Also available for the first time are some of Sudden's commercial videos as enhanced cd content, and an audio recording of a 1987 live performance in Augsburg, Germany, with Rowland S. Howard. Many of the ten titles have been unavailable -- and never before on cd -- since they were initially released, and those that have seen the light of day since their initial release were so hastily put together that it may well have been better to leave them out of print (re-packaged titles were riddled with such reissue faux pas as mis-titled songs, unfortunately altered cover artwork, and missing album credits and photos). Given that none of Sudden's work from the '80s has been adequately available for the greater part of the past decade or more, plus the fact that the ten albums represented in this reissue campaign were initially released by almost as many record labels, it's no wonder that Sudden has not enjoyed as much recognition as he richly deserves based on the body of work he has put forth. It is, however, a great shame. Certainly for a decade that saw some of rock's most important voices either fall silent or grow as aesthetically barren as such icons -- and Sudden influences -- as the Rolling Stones (who opened the decade with the triumphant TATTOO YOU but then went nearly invisible, or some would argue creatively vacant, for most of the rest of the '80s) and Neil Young (who spent most of the '80s opting for style over substance, mired in his genre-exploration program), it's fascinating to note that Sudden was plowing forth with the best material of his career unbeknownst to the hungry world of rock fans who would have rabidly embraced him had Sudden not been lurking so low beneath their radar. Yes, in retrospect, Sudden's work from this period sounds so vital, and resounds with such fresh clarity in comparison to the din being created by the fallen idols of the generation which preceded him. Well it's high time that Sudden is recognized for the incredible talent that he is: a true "rock 'n roll fugitive", or, as Andy Levein wrote, an "illusive rogue treading the periphery of the rock mainstream." "Why Nikki Sudden? Why now? The almost moribund fascination with '80s musical culture is a reminder that that wasn't all about vocoders and skinny noowave ties. The aftermath of UK punk and the arrival of the demonic Margaret Thatcher turned Britain into a gray land of unemployment and social misery. Aside from Joy Division, it was the Swell Maps, Rowland S. Howard, The Jacobites, and Sudden who made the darkness audible. The foppish attitude and ambiguous sexuality of Sudden and his cohorts never sat well with Swell Maps fans. But Nikki Sudden's delicate, angry 'post-punk' pop songwriting is so perfectly flawed, it's almost painful to hear, and yet he has crafted dozens of songs between 1982 and the present, working with his brother Epic Soundtracks and many others. The long, messy hair, paisley scarves, and Oscar Wilde-ish dandyisms from the Creation years (1986 on) is what made Sudden stand out from his peers. The lyrics to gorgeous threnodies such as "Jangle Town" from Texas, which presaged more British pop bands than you've had hot dinners, are alive with a loneliness that is nearly palpable. In his hands, the guitar was an instrument that could be a circular saw one moment and a prayer wheel the next. "Death Is Hanging Over Me", which appears on both TEXAS and DEAD MEN TELL NO TALES resembles Ry Cooder or Townes Van Zandt as much as The Chameleons. Sudden's music was precocious in that it was made for a time that was yet to come." - Tim Haslett, Other Music

Release date: 10/29/01