The nutsiest sound around! Madness came out of Camden Town with a ska/pop hybrid that was so joyous and fun, how could you resist? Well, obviously some did, because they're not huge stars all over the world. But if you've come in off the street, and you're beginning to feel the heat, then listen, Buster!
One Step Beyond gets the deluxe treatment it deserves in 2009, three decades after the band's '79 debut on 2-Tone Records. Madness put together a driving, horn and bass propelled sound that was nothing like anything before or aft, putting ska on the map again in the UK and even giving us Yanks a dose of it when "Our House" became a minor hit here in '83. (Albeit in a remixed version.) Album number one by The Nutty Boys comes with "hits" like the title cut, "My Girl," "The Prince," and "Bed And Breakfast Man," from the album, and this deluxe revamp adds a ton of B-sides, a John Peel Session, and even Spanish and Italian versions of "One Step Beyond." You also get liner notes from Scottish author Irvine Welsh (author of Trainspotting, among others). Great sound quality, nice packaging, five videos, and the promise of this kind of treatment to the rest of the catalog make me a happy lad!
(Salvo UK SALVOMDCD02)