Inspired by the success of this summer’s “4AD 4VR” theme show (as well as some surprising results in the countdown of the Top 500 songs of all time), tonight my program celebrates Manchester’s seminal Factory Records. From 9PM to 1AM, “FAC 90.3″ will showcase the artists, both legendary and less so, that made this upstart one of the most influential independent labels in music history. In addition to the big stalwarts like Joy Division, New Order, Happy Mondays, Durutti Column, and A Certain Ratio, you’ll hear tunes from Section 25, Crispy Ambulance, and Quando Quango, plus representative samples from Factory’s sister labels, Factory Benelux and Les Disques du Crépuscule, a few covers of Factory catalog classics, and much more. You want rarities? How about Kevin Hewick‘s “Haystack” (the first recording by the surviving members of Joy Division after the death of Ian Curtis) or the original Factory version of “Almost” by OMD? From 1978 until its demise in 1992, Factory was a label defined by attitude, eclecticism, style… and occasionally willful obstinacy. “FAC 90.3″ aspires to reflect that spirit, with KEXP’s distinctive flair and deep musical knowledge.
Coincidentally, next week sees the release of a fantastic new 2CD compilation (on Strut Records), FAC. DANCE, featuring 24 hard-to-find 12-inch versions from the Factory archives. To whet your appetite for tonight’s show, enjoy this free download of “Pretenders of Love” by Shark Vegas (originally found on the 1987 Factory US compilation Young, Popular & Sexy). If you’ve got song or artist suggestions for tonight’s show, leave a comment below, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org after 9PM. And thank you for supporting KEXP during our Fall 2011 Membership Drive!
DJ El Toro hosts the variety mix show on Wednesday nights from 9 PM to 1 AM on KEXP 90.3 FM Seattle and kexp.org. His weekly rant, Weird At My School, appears infrequently on the KEXP Blog. Please follow DJ El Toro (aka Kurt B. Reighley) on Twitter and/or Tumblr!