Following 2017’s fantastic Oz Waves, Steele Bonus is back to compile another collection of oddities from the 1980s Oz underground drawing upon small run cassette networks, oft overlooked tracks from Fast Forward, and community radio archives.
A range of names and sounds familiar to the Efficient Space world, from M-Squared adjacent acts (two tracks featuring the late Patrick Gibson), another minimal industrial-adjacent track from The Horse, He’s Sick, tracks featuring connections to Karen Marks (always a sign of quality!) and sleeper hits like Shanghai Au Go-Go’s ‘I Cried All Winter’ (which I could almost imagine Orion covering with requisite crowd singalong) which are worth the cost of the LP itself.
It’s easy to look back on this era with more than a hint of nostalgia; for a time that seems to have been thriving with underground activity. But really what comps like Oz Echoes provide are a fruitful look back on local histories of DIY culture and modes of production that can still be traced through to labels like Chemical Imbalance, Moontown, Altered States, etc.
-Mitch (Repressed Records)