The Prisoners’ spell at Big Beat Records in 1983 and 1984 coincided with their most psychedelic records and many of their fans’ favourite tracks. This new issue of Wisermiserdemelza has been substantially upgraded from its original 1990 CD issue bringing it in-line with the exacting standards that we have applied to their other studio albums in our Prisoners reissue series.
The Prisoners had become a fixture of the London garage scene, after they had released their debut album ‘A Taste Of Pink’ themselves and garnered a whole lot of attention on the back of it. Signed to Big Beat Records by Ted Caroll and Roger Armstrong, they were put to work recording their next album with a producer assigned by the label.
Phil Chevron had been in the band Radiators From Space and would later become a member of the Pogues, and was definitely a member of the Ace/ Big Beat extended family. In the notes he tells of his love for the band live and the problems he had in making them use the studio as a tool – the band being unduly influenced by a form of hometown primitivism. Today Graham Day, the Prisoners lead singer, is disappointed that he didn’t listen to Phil.
The album was full of great tracks such as Hurricane and Love Me Lies and Thinking Of You, that would all become massive favourites of the band’s live audience. The constant pushing against the idea of being signed and produced meant that they wouldn’t make another album for Big Beat. They did however complete their stint with the label by recording an awesome EP, “The Electric Fit” – which contained the Small Faces-influenced Last Thing On My Mind and the frenetic Melanie. Their final throw of the dice was Reaching My Head which had featured on a segment of Channel 4 TV’s The Tube, dedicated to the London Garage scene. The band stole the show by appearing in Star Trek outfits!
All these tracks – and some splendid stills from the Tube – are present and correct on this upgraded CD package, alongside in-depth interviews with all those involved in the record.
By Dean Rudland