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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Way ahead of its time, 4 May 2005
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This review is from: Music for Listening (Audio CD)
Nearly 25 years old and this stuff still sounds fresh. As the previous review says, it's far more reminiscent of The Future and early Human League than it is of Heaven 17's subsequent funkier endeavours. It also shows what an influnece this pioneering pair had on subsequent serious electronica. If you like Orbital, Future Sound of London, Boards of Canada, etc, then you certainly won't regret adding this to your collection.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A gem unearthed, 16 Oct. 2007
This review is from: Music for Listening (Audio CD)
Originally entited Music For Stowaways - Sony's original name for the personal cassette players that later became Walkmen - this is part of the gestation of the early Human League, along with the recent CD The Finest Hour Of...

BEF were the alter-ego of Heaven 17; the sparser, more experimental side of what Craig-Marsh and Ware were doing in the more mainstream trio. Indeed, this work was recorded mostly in 1978 so it sort of runs in parallel with what they were doing with Phil Oakey in the early days of the League, around the time they were writing and releasing the original Being Boiled and later Reproduction.

So what's on here? There's the radical dub of Groove Thang, the prototype of H17's super debut single (We Don't Need This) Fascist Groove Thang, a single that was banned at the time. Tracks like Decline Of The West are stark and minimal and closer to what the League were writing for Reproduction. It would be interesting to see how it would fare if it were totally new product released now. As it is, it's a welcome return from obscurity.

Ps It's thought that, even though Sony had changed the name from Stowaway to Walkman before the album was released, BEF declined to follow suit because they thought Music For Walkmen sound "like bloody Gary Numan"!
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great early work + bonus tracks!, 8 Nov. 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Music for Listening (Audio CD)
Fantastic to see this gem re-issued on CD AND with 3 bonus tracks from their cassette ONLY release(Music For Stowaways) back in `81 just adds to the pleasure. Much more minimal, cold electronics like the early incarnation of the League & thankfully a lot less 'funky' than Heaven 17 ever were - this should be a welcome addition to ANY Synth/Wave collection!! In fact it sounds more like anything The Future(i.e Marsh & Ware) ever released!!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Is 'A Baby Called Billy' a reference to MacKenzie?, 2 Aug. 2009
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This review is from: Music for Listening (Audio CD)
I just dug out the vinyl of this after 20+ years & noticed on the vinyl issue the 'pavement side' label is all incorrect-- a repeat of A side. But can anyone shed light on my question-- Is Billy here a reference to Billy MacKenzie? Did they go that far back?
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