Northern Dream - Bill Nelson

Northern Dream
Esoteric Recordings is pleased to announce the launch of a new imprint, Cocteau Discs, the home of Bill Nelson’s catalogue between 1971 and 2001.

The series of ongoing releases begins with the re-release of Bill’s classic album Northern Dream, recorded on rudimentary equipment at Holyground studios in Wakefield in 1971. One of the first truly independently produced albums to be released in Britain, the album featured wonderful compositions such as Everyone’s Hero, End of the Seasons, Love’s a Way and Smiles . Championed by John Peel, the album paved the way for Bill’s future career with his bands Be Bop Deluxe and Red Noise and for his highly regarded solo career.

Watch Bill Nelson talking to Esotreric Label Manager Mark Powell about his life and music exclusively for

Our Price: £10.95
Code: COCD1001
Weight: 200
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Photograph (A Beginning) / Everyone’s Hero / House Of Sand / End Of The Seasons / Rejoice / Love’s Away / Northern Dreamer / Bloo Blooz / Sad Feelings / See It Through / Smiles / Chymepeace (An Ending)
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Us an Dem
Released 18/05/09. Benjamin Zephaniah is known to most as a poet, a very respected and popular poet. He was listed by the Times newspaper as one of the Top 50 British post war writers and has turned down an OBE. In 1990 he released an album called “Us and Dem” on Mango/ Island, the album contains a mix of his poetry and danceable reggae beats. The songs are political but spiked with humour and a human touch that stop if from sounding preachy. The Cherry Red issue of the album features a 45 minute interview with Iain McNay from Cherry Red TV and a video of the track Us and Dem alongside three tracks that never appeared on the original vinyl issue Our Price: £9.95

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ESOTERIC RECORDINGS imprint Cocteau Discs, the home of BILL NELSON’s catalogue between 1971 and 2001, continues their series of ongoing releases with the release of a re-mastered edition of the album, "Luminous” from 1990. The album has been unavailable for over 20 years and was described by BILL NELSON as "A fragment from my home studio sketchbook. A collection of previously unreleased songs which have been preserved in their original raw state. The rule was to use only first takes and to move from the initial idea to final mix in as short a time as possible. Although the recordings were made with the use of limited technology, I hope that the result captures something of the charm and innocence of spontaneous improvised songwriting…”


"Post-Bop Bill delivers the dreamy synthpop goodies. He was the sparkling axe victimiser in Be Bop Deluxe, the uniformed new waver in Bill Nelson’s Red Noise, and a solo artist and producer who very nearly fit the 80s perfectly with his dreamy synthpop.”  

Classic Rock Magazine

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Practically Wired (or how I became guitar boy)
ESOTERIC RECORDINGS imprint Cocteau Discs, the home of BILL NELSON’s catalogue between 1971 and 2001, continues their series of on-going releases with the release of a newly remastered edition of the album, "PRACTICALLY WIRED (or HOW I BECAME GUITAR BOY)” from 1995.

The album has been unavailable for over ten years and was described by BILL NELSON as "An instrumental guitar album – The plan was to record very quickly and spontaneously; no preparation except for a list of moods and titles. ‘Practically Wired’ is a Polaroid snapshot of a personal paradise…a dream of electric guitars”.

The Cocteau Discs edition fully restores the original artwork and features a new note by Bill Nelson.


"Don't expect much languid Duane Eddy twanging - Nelson gets mad-busy from the off as frenetic opener Roses And Rocketships explodes in a barrage of cut-ups, samples and twists. In fact, it's a relief when the album calms down, easing into what might be called grooves and allowing him to charm over the seductive, mid-tempo Pink Buddha Blues, or the ultra-mellow Kid With Cowboy Tie. Perhaps a spirtual heir to Jeff Beck's Blow By Blow, and admirably ambient". (7/10*)

Chris Roberts - Classic Rock (Summer 2012)


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A timely reissue of Billy MacKenzie's first solo album 'Outernational' plus bonus tracks. William MacArthur "Billy" MacKenzie first came to musical prominence through his involvement in the much loved band The Associates in the early 80's. This was his first album release after the split with fellow Associate, Alan Rankine.
The album was originally released in 1992 on Circa Records.
This CD contains the two singles taken from the album, 'Baby' and 'Colours Will Come'.
The CD features the ten tracks of the original album release and four bonus tracks including mixes/remixes of 'Colours Will Come - US 60659 Mix' by Larry Heard, 'Feels Like The Richtergroove' by Mike Koglin, 'Look What You've Done - Marital Mix' and the beautiful 'Because You Love'.
The CD booklet features an expanded version of the original artwork and includes a detailed UK discography and sleeve notes.
The album has been digitally remastered for this release.
Speaking of the 'Outernational' album to Record Collector magazine in 1994 MacKenzie gave his impression of the album "I think it has a glacial beauty. It doesn't always have to be demonstrative. Fire can burn, but so can ice. And that would direct the attention to the lyrical content as well. Some of it had a lot of religious connotations, like "Colours Will Come". I think that it's an emotionally detached album in some ways, but it also has a strong message. Maybe it appeared like I wasn't trying or expressing, or that there was a block. But it wasn't. There was a calmness and a lot of beauty in that album.
Billy MacKenzie passed away aged 39 on January 22nd 1997 leaving a lasting musical legacy.

Release Date: 25/03/2013
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Tasmanian Tiger EP (Strictly Limited Edition on CD & 7" Vinyl)

Marc Almond is back with a brand new 4-track EP, featuring a plethora of excellent ‘friends’ including Jarvis Cocker (Pulp) and Carl Barat (The Libertines, Dirty Pretty Things). Following the successful experience with double A single ‘Burn Bright/The Dancing Marquis’, legendaryproducer Tony Visconti (Bowie, T-Rex, The Moody Blues, Morrissey) is also back working alongside Marc.

Next to producer Tris Penna, Visconti lends a helping hand on string arrangements and mixing duties for the opening track, ‘Tasmanian Tiger’, and ‘Death of a Dandy’, the latter inspired by the recent death of Soho’s tragic artist Sebastian Horsley and featuring special guest Danielz from T-Rex tribute ‘T.Rextasy’. Jarvis Cocker brings to the mix an infectious electro-pop number he wrote for the occasion, ‘Worship Me Now’, where he also features on backing vocals and takes care of production with Jason Buckle (All Seeing I). Completing the excellent recording, ‘Love Is Not On Trial’ sees Almond continuing his collaboration with Carl Barat, his co-star in the 2012 opera ‘Poppea’ at Theatre du Chatelet in Paris. Produced again by Tris Penna, the song was written especially for Marc by Carl, who also features on guitar and vocals.

The eclectic 4 track EP is available on a strictly limited edition turquoise coloured 7" vinyl in a beautifully designed gatefold sleeve, complete with a CD of the same four songs.


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