The resurgence of interest in the earlier works of Bourbonese Qualk after the release of “My Government Is My Soul” prompted the group to compile this retrospective compilation of unavailable recordings, including tracks from previous albums, live recordings and unreleased works. a cd and book version was planned but abandoned. this record was released on the groups own ‘New International’ label.


Miles Miles: Guitars & Various Instruments.
Simon Crab: Electronics, Various instruments & voice.
Owen If: Drums & Percussion.
Kif Cole: Percussion.


Bourbonese Qualk operate in such the same area – or spirit – as such avant rockers as Can, The residents, This Heat and cabaret Voltaire favouring the unusual and not immediately attractive over the bland verities of the pop world. Which is not to say that they never sound like pop music especially in today”s climate of post modern pop construction. Presumably “Bo Qu” is a representative selection of the groups work from 1982 to 1989, which shows them moving from a kind of pan-ethnic primitivism on the earlier pieces to a cleaner, more pulse driven style on tracks from last years excellent “My Government Is My Soul”. And, as with many of the forebear mentioned above, they are more interesting the closer they get to the beat: this is well trodden ground in avant garde terms but startling as pop. They”ll never match the likes of State 808 etc. in chart terms but with access to the correct technology they are more likely to amaze. And there”s an anarchistic slant to it that”s quite touching in this mass consumer era and well worth letting Loose on the dance cult followers. Avant House? it”s about time.

Andy Gill

This is a compilation of thirteen tracks from 1982-1990, recorded by one of many members of the music scene who have had a far better reception abroad than at home. For the most part it’s distinctly exotic rock, with shuffling, alien rhythms and odd atmospherics. The opener, the previously unreleased Petit Mal is a slice of spectral beauty, wailing instrumental cries over the beat. Other highlights include the ominous Glass Works, the vibrant, pulsating Under the Influence (from the forthcoming Unpop LP), the processed clarinet and tight rhythm of Lukunzi, and the laid back and pretty Always There. A lot of the instrumentation sounds very dated now, and a few of the tracks are pretty tedious, but it remains fairly distinctive. There are a few echoes of the Cabs and people like Portion Control, but Bourbonese Qualk have their own definite character. Compared to many groups making experimental music, they’re pretty middle-of-the-road, which I suspect accounts for their lack of fame in this part of the world – too strange for the indie fans, and too normal for the experimental fans. This compilation is, incidentally, considerably better than their last album, My Government is my Soul.


Side One

  1. Petit Mal  (Simon Crab; Electronics, Electronic Percussion.)
  2. Gag  (Simon Crab; Electronics, Electronic Percussion, Bass. Julian Gibert; Voice, Percussion.)
  3. Shutdown (Simon Crab; Electronics, Electronic Percussion, Bass, Guitar. Julian Gibert; Voice.)
  4. Makboun  (Simon Crab; Electronics, Shawm.)
  5. Glass Works – Live at Aniki Bobo, Porto Portugal  (Simon Crab; Glass. Miles Miles; Glass. Owen If; Glass. Kif Cole; Live Sound.)
  6. Counter  (Simon Crab; Electronics. Miles Miles; Saxophone, Percussion.)
  7. Under the Influence (Simon Crab; Electronics, Electronic Percussion. Miles Miles; Guitar.)
  8. Let it go  (Simon Crab; Electronics, Electronic Percussion, Voice. Miles Miles; Guitar. Owen If; Drums & Percussion.)
  9. I’ve Heard Some Talk (Simon Crab; Tapes, Clarinet.)
  10. God With Us  (Simon Crab; Electronics, Electronic Percussion, Julian Gilbert; Voice.)
  11. Lukunzi  – Live at the LaermStruktur Festival, Ravensburg, Germany 1986 (Simon Crab; Electronics, Electronic Percussion, Clarinet. Owen If; Drums .)
  12. Return to Order  (Simon Crab; Electronics, Electronic Percussion, Guitar, Clarinet. Julian Gilbert; Voice.)
  13. Always There  (Simon Crab; Electronics, Guitar.)

(Download the whole album)