Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Tom Robinson - North By Northwest [1982] & War Baby EP [1983]

Tom Robinson (born 1 June 1950) is an English singer/songwriter and broadcaster probably best-known for the UK hit songs "Glad to be Gay" (1976), "2-4-6-8 Motorway" (1977), "Don't Take No for an Answer" (1978) and "War Baby" (1983).
Robinson was the founding member of the Tom Robinson Band (TRB), an overtly political band with several hits in the 1970s.
Later in the 1980s, Robinson fronted and bankrolled Sector 27, a less political rock band which released one album - produced by Steve Lillywhite - and left Robinson virtually bankrupt. He fled to Hamburg to escape his creditors. There, he penned his 1983 hit "War Baby" and recorded his first solo album North By Northwest with producer Richard Mazda. [wikipedia]

Side A'
Now Martin's Gone
Can't Keep Away[Part II]
Looking For A Bonfire
Merrily Up On High
Side B'
Those Days
In The Cold
The Night Tide
Love Comes

Tom Robinson : bass/keyboard
Richrd Mazda : guitar/sax
Steve Laurie : drums
Recorded Jan/Feb 1982 at FDH,Daylight
and Russl studios,Hamburg.
Engineered by Eberhard Schnellen.
Produced by Richard Mazda.
* * * * *
The first TR solo album: sparse, minimal and produced by Richard Mazda in Hamburg, Jan/Feb 1982. It includes an early version of 'Atmospherics: Listen to the Radio' and 'Merrily Up On High' - both cowritten with Peter Gabriel.

Robinson looks like a slightly dazed everyman on the cover of North by Northwest, his first solo album, but the tunes, many co-written with Peter Gabriel, are uniformly strong. Recorded in Hamburg with only producer Richard Mazda and a drummer, North by Northwest is a mature and subtle album of various sophisticated settings, marred only by an agonized (and agonizing) song of love lost, "Now Martin's Gone." The music is dark and moody, with synth-heavy arrangements, but it has a low-key charm that's more personal than political, lightened by danceable new wave and reggae beats. "Atmospherics (Listen to the Radio)" is one of the gloomiest rock tunes ever written, and another Robinson classic.
Having lost his appeal for the record industry, Robinson recorded and released "War Baby," a number that sounds like a Steely Dan outtake, on his own. It became a major British hit in 1983, and revitalized his career. []

Tom Robinson
War Baby 12" single
Panic Records NICT 2 1983

Side A'
1.War Baby
[Re-recorded extended version]
Side B'
1.War Baby
[a live duo version]
by Tom Robinson and Mark Ramsden [8.12.82]
2.Hell Yes

mp3 @ 320 & scans
& new flac rip

North by & War baby here

War Baby


  1. Would LOVE the Sector 27 posted, since even the CD compilation is out of print. Been looking for it for quite a while now! Love the Tom R!

  2. @ nortoncommando
    sorry , i don't have the Sector 27 lp
    in my collection.
    If anybody can help...
    @ anonymous : ???

  3. I remember seeing Tom Robinson back in 1983 around the time of this single, I was only 14 but its amazing how strong the memory was an amazing gig and I remember the whole audience singing along to War Baby and 2-4-6-8 Motorway...ahh happy memories!

    Having said that, if someone had told me then that 27 years later I would be sat on my sofa with a computer the size of a large book recounting the memory and sending it via the telephone lines to be potentially displayed and read on screens all across the world, I would have called them deranged!

    Thanks for such a great rip, god knows where all my TRB records went!

  4. The link don't run!