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6 Degrees Entertainment

Title - 'Pelican West: Deluxe Edition'
Artist - Haircut One Hundred

Haircut One Hundred were a British new wave/jazz-funk group formed in 1980 by Nick Heyward. Indeed, they first sprung into the limelight with the release of their very first single 'Favorite Shirts (Boy Meets Girl)' soon after having signed to Arista Records. It reached #4 in the UK Singles Chart and was quickly followed by 'Love Plus One' (which peaked at #3), and then 'Fantastic Day' (which peaked at #9). In the blink of an eye the band had caught the attention and affection of the buoyant UK music scene when single sales were soaring.

Originally released in February 1982 this highly anticipated reissue of Pelican West is the most comprehensive collection available of the original album plus related tracks showcasing Haircut One Hundred at their peak. It peaked at #2 on the UK Album Charts, #31 on the Billboard 200 (US), and was certified Platinum by the BPI.

This incredible, chock full of musical gems 2CD set not only brings us the full length original album (all 12 tracks), but also includes the Top 10 hit single 'Nobody's Fool' (in both the 7" and 12" forms). Other bonus material includes the previously unavailable in the UK mixes of 'Calling Captain Autumn' (Special Extended Version) and 'Love's Got Me In Triangles' (Special Extended Version).

The 7" and 12" versions of the b/sides 'Boat Party', 'Marine Boy', 'Ski Club Of Great Britain' and 'October Is Orange (Day 1 And Day 2)' are also included in this Deluxe Edition. As I'm sure you are well aware, many of these have never been available on CD before today. The CD booklet features artwork from both the original vinyl album and promotional magazine plus extensive sleeve notes and a UK discography. Could you ask for anything more?!

I've always has a soft spot for Haircut One Hundred. I loved their music from day one, always felt good listening to their two albums, especially this one, and Nick Heyward was actually my very first British interview over here in the US @ 1994! So, having been sent this CD for review, well, it was a pleasure and an honor, believe you me! The album kicks off with their massive hit 'Favourite Shirts (Boy Meets Girl),' a hip-skip and pop bounce of a summer song, it's backed by another single 'Love Plus One' ("Then I called") and the jazz salsa flow of 'Lemon Firebrigade.'

The laid back 'Marine Boy' is next, and a funky slap bass combined with both piano and drum beat I dare you to find (save for anything Level 42 did, of course), and that's followed by the fun pop of 'Milk Film,' more funky slap bass work and trumpets on 'Kingsize (You're My Little Steam Whistle),' and then the brilliant fox horn chants of 'Fantastic Day' ("The only thing that makes it good is seeing my favourite sight. Prance and flutter stride down that green escalator, yeah"). The high energy brass section turns up the heat, along with the RPM's, on 'Baked Bean,' and that's backed by the delightful lite 'Snow Girl.' As much as it was always only an album track, just listen to it and tell me that it couldn't have been it's very own Top 10 hit for them! Easily one of my favorites on the album, next up is 'Love's Got Me in Triangles,' which in turn is followed by the summer feel of 'Surprise Me Again,' and then the last track off the original album, the euphoric rap/scat lite 'Calling Captain Autumn.'

The first disc of the double set rounds out with the aforementioned 'Boat Party,' 'Ski Club,' 'October Is Orange (Day 1 & 2),' and 'Nobody's Fool' (7" Single).

Sure there have been several CD reissues of Pelican West over the years, but this new Cherry Red version out does them all! Pristine sound straight from the master tapes and with all songs written and composed by Nick Heyward (save for 'Love's Got Me in Triangles,' which he wrote with Les Nemes), the albums sounds as fresh today as it did back then. The second of the discs houses all the real Haircut One Hundred musical gems, as we get 13 tracks that, for my money, make a rainy day feel like it's a summer's one!

1. 'Favourite Shirts (Boy Meets Girl)' (12" Version)
2. 'Love Plus One' (12" Version)
3. 'Fantastic Day' (12" Version)
4. 'Nobody's Fool' (12" Version)
5. 'Calling Captain Autumn' (Special Extended Version)
6. 'Boat Party' (12" Version)
7. 'October Is Orange (Day 1 & 2') (12" Version)
8. 'Ski Club of Great Britain'
9. 'Marine Boy' (12" Version)
10. 'Love's Got Me in Triangles' (Special Extended Version)
11. 'Favourite Shirts (Boy Meets Girl)' (Extended Version)
12. 'Fantastic Day (Live'
13. 'Calling Captain Autumn' (12" Version)

Nick Heyward left the band opting to launch a successful solo career after increasing tensions during the recording of the second album. The band went on to record a 2nd album "Paint And Paint” for Polydor Records in 1984 though neither party eclipsed the heights of the creative and commercial success of 1982 releases.

'Pelican West: Deluxe Edition' CD Purchase Link