Armagideon Time

Archive for the ‘Do K-Tel’ category

Do K-Tel #17: High Energy (1979)

September 18th, 2017

If you’ve been reading this site, following my twitter feed, or engaged in conversation with me, then you’ll be well aware about my long-standing fascination with the “death of disco.” It was a social-cultural shift wrapped up in musical one, whose impact still echoes through the present day. It was the culmination of multiple interwoven […]

Do K-Tel #17: Hot Tracks (1983)

September 11th, 2017

Chart Action 83 may not be my favorite K-Tel release, but it was the foundation upon which my irrational interest in mass market pop compilations was built. The album dropped right at the moment my eleven year old self became entranced by WHTT’s “hot hit radio” format and included several of the cuts I’d tune […]

Do K-Tel #16: New Wave (1979)

September 5th, 2017

Discogs’ chronology of K-Tel releases doesn’t separate by regional markets, which makes sense from an archival standpoint if not an ease-of-use one. It can make it difficult to pinpoint items of interest, especially during those high-volume years of most interest to me. I’ve sifted through the listings a half dozen times already, yet each pass […]

I first come across 1982′s Hit Express while sifting through the Discog’s exhaustive (and exhausting) listings for K-Tel offerings. While it contained a few crucial cuts from that magically apocalyptic era, it lacked that certain something which would inspire an immediate purchase. I made a note of it — complete with a question mark — […]

By the end of the past spring, my K-Tel obsession had lost a good deal of its momentum. I’d already picked up the most obvious and essential compilations and my interest had started to drift toward cowpunk and Paisley Underground obscurities that went overlooked during my Nineties vinyl collecting days. The few K-Tel releases I […]

Every K-Tel “current hits” compilation was disposable by design. Their contents were skimmed from the previous seasons pop charts, pressed to vinyl, and released under some ephemerally significant title and trade dress. They stuck it out in the midlist churn for a brief period of topical appeal before getting booted into the realm of deep […]

It’s time for another dive into the howling vortex of the 1983 pop charts, as chronicled by K-Tel’s midlist compilation albums. In this case, the insanity is not merely implied… …it’s directly stated in the title. Honestly, the whole Dancing Madness angle doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. It’s the type of title […]

As mentioned previously, my recollections of Chart Action 83‘s track list experienced a good deal of inflationary haziness during the two decades between losing and replacing my copy of that crucial compilation. It grew to include every fondly remembered slice of pop fluff heard on WHTT (“Boston’s HOT HIT radio!”) over the course of that […]

I’m going to go out of sequence with this week’s entry, which is fitting because it was both my most recent record purchase and the second K-Tel comp I bought with my own money. The album is Hit Mix, released in 1984 and originally purchased by yours truly from a cassette bargain bin at Bradlees […]

This week we’re taking another trip back to the heart of the Me Decade as chronicled by overstuffed mid-list music compilations of dubious production quality. The album is K-Tel’s Hit Machine, covering the mellow pop thrills which graced the chart in late 1975 and early 1976. Here’s the track list: A1 K.C. & The Sunshine […]

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