154 (album)

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154
Wire-154 (album cover).jpg
Studio album by Wire
Released September 1979 (1979-09)
Recorded April—May 1979 (April—May 1979)
Studio Advision Studios, West London, England, United Kingdom
Genre Post-punk, art punk, experimental rock
Length 44:41
Label Harvest
Producer Mike Thorne
Wire studio album chronology
Chairs Missing
(1978)
154
(1979)
The Ideal Copy
(1987)
Singles from 154
  1. "Map Ref. 41°N 93°W"
    Released: 26 October 1979
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 4.5/5 stars[1]
Encyclopedia of Popular Music 4/5 stars[2]
The Guardian 5/5 stars[3]
Mojo 5/5 stars[4]
Pitchfork 9.1/10[5]
Q 5/5 stars[6]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide 4.5/5 stars[7]
Smash Hits 7½/10[8]
Uncut 4/5 stars[9]
The Village Voice B[10]

154 is the third album by the English post-punk band Wire, released in 1979 (see 1979 in music) on EMI imprint Harvest Records in the UK and Europe and Warner Bros. Records in America. Branching out even further from the minimalist punk rock style of their earlier work, 154 is considered a progression of the sounds displayed on Wire's previous album Chairs Missing, with the group experimenting with slower tempos, fuller song structures and a more prominent use of guitar effects, synthesizers and electronics.

154 peaked at number 39 in the UK Albums Chart, the highest position the band has achieved.[11] It was first issued on CD in 1987 by EMI Japan and later reissued by Restless Records in 1989. First editions of the vinyl album were accompanied by an EP, the tracks from which are included on the Harvest CD, issued in 1994, along with an additional bonus track. The new remastered release, released by Pinkflag as digipacks in 2006, does not contain any extra tracks, because, according to the band, such additions dishonour the "conceptual clarity of the original statements."[12] The album is so named because the band had played 154 gigs in their career at the time of the album's release. Pitchfork listed 154 as 85th best album of the 1970s.[13]

Track listing

Side One
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "I Should Have Known Better" Graham Lewis 3:52
2. "Two People in a Room" Colin Newman, Bruce Gilbert 2:00
3. "The 15th" Newman 3:05
4. "The Other Window" Lewis, Gilbert 2:07
5. "Single K.O." Lewis 2:23
6. "A Touching Display" Lewis 6:55
7. "On Returning" Newman 2:06
Side two
No. Title Writer(s) Length
8. "A Mutual Friend" Lewis, Newman 4:28
9. "Blessed State" Gilbert 3:28
10. "Once Is Enough" Newman 3:23
11. "Map Ref. 41°N 93°W" Lewis, Newman, Gilbert 3:40
12. "Indirect Enquiries" Lewis, Newman 3:36
13. "40 Versions" Gilbert 3:28

Tracks 19–24 are demo versions that have also appeared on compilations such as Behind the Curtain and After Midnight.

2018 Special Edition

Personnel

Wire
Additional personnel
Production
  • Dave Dragon – art direction
  • Paul Hardiman – engineer
  • Brian Harris – typographic design
  • Ken Thomas – assistant engineer

References

  1. ^ Huey, Steve. "154 – Wire". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 29 February 2012.
  2. ^ Larkin, Colin (2011). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (5th concise ed.). Omnibus Press. ISBN 0-85712-595-8.
  3. ^ Simpson, Dave (3 March 2006). "Wire, 154". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 February 2012.
  4. ^ Myers, Ben (June 2018). "Wire: 154". Mojo. No. 295. p. 104.
  5. ^ Tangari, Joe (5 May 2006). "Wire: Pink Flag / Chairs Missing / 154". Pitchfork. Retrieved 29 February 2012.
  6. ^ Harris, John (July 2018). "Dawning of a New Era". Q. No. 386. pp. 120–21.
  7. ^ Gross, Joe (2004). "Wire". In Brackett, Nathan; Hoard, Christian. The New Rolling Stone Album Guide. Simon & Schuster. pp. 883–84. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
  8. ^ Starr, Red (18–31 October 1979). "Wire: 154". Smash Hits. p. 29.
  9. ^ "Wire: 154". Uncut. No. 106. March 2006. p. 106.
  10. ^ Christgau, Robert (25 February 1980). "Christgau's Consumer Guide". The Village Voice. Retrieved 29 February 2012.
  11. ^ "Wire | full Official Chart History" (select "Albums" tab). Official Charts Company. Retrieved 8 April 2018.
  12. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 14 April 2006. Retrieved 2 May 2006.
  13. ^ Pitchfork staff (23 June 2004). "Staff Lists: Top 100 Albums of the 1970s". Pitchfork. Retrieved 30 August 2013.

External links

  • 154 at Discogs (list of releases)
  • Lyrics for the album on Wire's official website
  • The making of Wire's 154 album
  • Accolades archived at Acclaimed Music
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