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Black and White Minstrels

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Album Review

As a document of this ever-inventive band's earliest material dating from 1975 to 1979 — before they signed with Virgin — B&W Minstrels encompasses the Monochrome Set singles for Rough Trade and Disques Bleu, as well as previously unheard demos. This marks an engaging period in their development, though to some extent, the group seemed to be born fully formed anyway. Most bands at this stage in their career haven't a clue as to what they want to sound like. For spoiled kids the Monochrome Set, however, the problem seemed to be one of choosing from their innumerable options; here's a band who could settle happily in any style they wanted, from straight pop to ballroom or cabaret. B&W Minstrels provides an entertaining run through their early repertoire, and it saves you from having to hunt down those singles.


Formed: 1978

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '10s

When the British art school punk band the B-Sides changed their name and direction to become Adam & the Ants, guitarist/vocalist Bid and guitarist Lester Square opted out to form their own group, the Monochrome Set. Founded in London in 1978, the band (also comprising ex-Gloria Mundi and Mean Street bassist Jeremy Harrington and former Art Attacks drummer J.D. Crowe) was quickly snapped up by the Rough Trade label, and during 1979 issued three singles -- "He's Frank," "Eine Symphonie des Grauens,"...
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Black and White Minstrels, The Monochrome Set
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