AKA – Red Therapy

AKA – Red Therapy – God, City Drugs, 645 Dog // Raggedy Andy’s, Fear, Mental Timebombs (Zulu Records) 1980. Another great Canadian New Wave release. AKA are often referred to, along with UJ3RK5 and Monitor as “West Coast No Wave”. In fact, there was a release a few years back entitled “West Coast No Wave” featuring these three bands. And like these other bands, AKA are a really fun, upbeat listen which is something that separates the “West Coast No Wave” bands from most of their New York cousins. In fact, I really hesitate to use the term “No Wave” with these West Coast bands, because to me, “No Wave” represents a very small artistic scene occurring at a very particular time and place in New York. I don’t really see “No Wave” as a genre at all. In my humble opinion, this has a hell of a lot more in common with the music that was coming out of San Francisco, which was the epicentre of this sort of agitated weirdness. I could totally see these guys on a bill with Pink Section and Bay of Pigs. So instead, I would describe AKA as “New Wave” which is obviously a completely irrelevant term considering that this release is 30 years old. Man, coming up with labels is difficult. Maybe it’s just crazy, offbeat Nerd Rock? I dunno, this thing really doesn’t “Rock” per-se. It just spazzes about. It’s more like Mating Music For Quantum Physics Majors. Herky-Jerky songs like Mental Timebombs are bound to get the beakers bubbling.

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8 Responses to AKA – Red Therapy

  1. Roberto says:

    yes,very “early 80′s”,when minimalism and some funky was de riguer…my fave is Ragged Andy’s,which was uploaded twice,instead of Mental Timebombs…cheers

  2. Lepidus vir says:

    Sounds like Polyrock meets the Suburban Lawns meets early XTC, especially “Raggedy Andy’s.” Thanks for posting! We need to hear this stuff because there are so few bands who dare to be weird these days.

  3. Paraphrase says:

    Speaking of weird West Coast, perhaps you could post the LP by Lifers that appeared on Gammon Records probably around 1980?

    Strangely there seems to be almost no online info on the band or the album

  4. Ira says:

    Wow, great release. Some really interesting tracks. It seems to me that it has more in common with a band like DEVO, with it’s up-beat weirdness than the dark, gloomy elements of so much No Wave. I also agree with your assessment of No Wave as a NYC phenomenon. Not that I was there… but having read up on it a bit, it seems like No Wave was really localized to that place and time and really that small group of people.

  5. TG Chicago says:

    Thanks for this! I think you have one of the tracks mislabeled, though. Isn’t it “634 Dog” rather than “645 Dog”?

  6. oddrocker says:

    I dig this band I wonder where they are now . Raggady was downloaded twice please put mental time bombs on this its a spastic herky jerky odd rocking classic

  7. Joe says:

    @oddrocker – all fixed!

  8. oddrocker says:

    thnx Joe Happy New Years

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