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Artist: The Durutti Column
An expanded double vinyl edition of Without Mercy, the fourth - suite-like - album by The Durutti Column (from 1984), which is widely regarded as Vini Reilly's most ambitious release.
In 1983 Durutti Column mentor/manager Tony Wilson asked Vini Reilly to abandon fleeting guitar miniatures in favour of a longform modern classical piece. The result was an ambitious 20 minute instrumental suite, Without Mercy, performed by core Durutti duo Vini Reilly and Bruce Mitchell along with Blaine L. Reininger and John Metcalfe (violas), Caroline Lavelle (cello), Tim Kellett (trumpet) and Maunagh Fleming (cor anglais).
Explains Vini: "Tony had just come in for a conversation one day and said, 'Look, you keep making these albums that you want to make, and I'm quite happy with you doing that, but just give me this one album and do it my way.' He wanted it to have a narrative determined by a Keats poem, La Belle Dame Sans Merci, which he said was the poet's version of a pop song: boy meets girl, falls in love with girl, loses girl, blah blah blah. It was a very, very Tony way of looking at it. He had aspirations that I should be taken seriously.”
The bonus tracks on the second disc include the original recordings of Duet, Estoril a Noite and Favourite Descending Intervals (all re-worked for inclusion on Without Mercy), as well as companion instrumental All That Love And Maths Can Do, and 3 extracts from Without Mercy recorded live at the London School of Economics in December 1984.
The remastered set is housed in a handmade cairn board gatefold sleeve featuring letterpress typography, liner note insert, and tipped sheets front and back featuring L’Etang de Trivaux by Henri Matisse (1916/17)
1. Without Mercy I
1. Without Mercy II
1. All That Love and Maths Can Do
3. Estoril a Noite
4. Favourite Descending Intervals
5. A Little Mercy
1. Mercy Theme (live LSE 1984)
2. A Little Mercy (live LSE 1984)
3. Mercy Dance (live LSE 1984)