Led by Andrew Jarman (vocally something of a David Byrne student), this London quartet drifts between arty synth-dance and lightly played mood music. Using dinky electronic percussion rather than a drummer in the early days, the enigmatic group's records alternately wax chilly, funky, humorless and clever.
Ministry's Al Jourgensen remixed "Ladder Jack" and "House" for the eponymous American 12-inch, a four-song sampling of the band's pre-Comrades 45s. Both of those remixes also appear on 'Taste', a 1980-'87 singles compilation that presents an absurdly bloodless trashing of Lou Reed's "Rock&Roll" and adds two previously unreleased items, including an awfully strange cover of John Fogerty's "Run Through the Jungle. "Fielding a solid five-man lineup, APHOS comes out of the woods on the obviously commercial England in the Rain. Unlike its previous unpredictable self-indulgences, the band now reveals a clear-cut focus: the half-dozen peppy songs are all standard stylish modern dance rock that compares favorably to Wang Chung and that whole post-Ultravox ilk. If Jarman weren't such a duff singer, these attractively produced tracks might be really appealing. [Ira Robbins] http://www.trouserpress.com/entry.php?a=a_popular_history_of_signs . Here them playing live at Amsterdam Melkweg in 1980.