Crime & the City Solution Share Details of Two Reissues

Crime & the City Solution, who recently released their sixth studio album, the killer, have announced details of two reissues: their 1985 mini-LP, Just South of Heaven and their debut full-length album, Room of Lights (1986).

The band – currently based in Berlin – will perform two very special shows next week in the city with the three-piece acoustic line up of Bronwyn Adams (violin and vocals), Simon Bonney (vocals) and Joshua Murphy (acoustic guitar and vocals). Inspired by the Bonney/Adams duo that toured the US and Europe with Mark Lanegan in 2019, Crime (Acoustic) will channel the intimate atmosphere that that many of the songs were first born from, capturing the simple joy of friends playing together for friends, unmediated by technology. Crime (Acoustic) will perform at Eschschloraque Rümschrümp in Berlin on the 17 & 18 April.

Just South of Heaven (available in limited edition blue vinyl) features Crime’s London line up of Simon Bonney, Mick Harvey, Rowland S. Howard, Harry Howard and Epic Soundtracks. Recorded between the legendary Hansa Tonstudios in Berlin and London’s Strongrooms with producer Flood (Frank Tovey, Depeche Mode, Erasure), the mini-LP’s NME review from the time saw Mat Snow describe the band as “…resonat[ing] with an unexpected spectral beauty, a languid pensiveness lingering in the undertow of their gut-wrench bedsit-black blues”.

1986’s full length debut album, Room of Lights (available in limited edition yellow vinyl), would be the final recording by the London line up. The album includes one of their most beloved songs, ‘Six Bells Chime’, and this lineup reached its zenith with a historic swansong performance of the track in Wim Wenders’ 1987 cinematic masterpiece ‘Wings of Desire’, one of Empire magazine’s 100 Best Films of World Cinema. In their review of the album, AllMusic recently wrote that “…their sound was grungy in a different time and space, long before the term was coined.”

Formed in Sydney by Simon Bonney at the age of 16, Crime & the City Solution’s early performances from 1977-1979 had a big impact on key figures of the early Melbourne art-punk/post punk scene. In 1984, Bad Seed Mick Harvey shipped Bonney to England to form the London based Crime with their friend the brilliant and ever influential ex-Birthday Party guitarist Rowland S Howard, with his brother Harry Howard on bass and Epic Soundtracks on drums. The London incarnation – encapsulated by these two reissues – disbanded soon after their performance in ‘Wings of Desire’. Crime’s London alumni included the late Epic Soundtracks (co-founder of Swell Maps), Mick Harvey (who releases his sixth solo album, Five Ways to Say Goodbye in May), and brothers Rowland S. Howard and Harry Howard, who went on to form These Immortal Souls after their time with Crime (Get Lost (Don’t Lie!), I’m Never Gonna Die Again (1992) and new compilation EXTRA are out this week on Mute).

The first Berlin incarnation which followed is represented by three albums recently reissued on Mute – Shine (1988), The Bride Ship (1989) and Paradise Discotheque (1990), and the live album, The Adversary. Another 20 years would pass before the band, then based in Detroit, would return with their fifth studio album, American Twilight: “as much an elegy to the American Dream that’s turned into a global nightmare as it is a damn fine rock & roll album” -The Quietus

After a 10-year hiatus, a new Berlin based incarnation, produced 2023’s the killer, Crime’s sixth studio album release. The new album was inspired by Bonney’s work delivering aid programmes, and looks at the ways conflict manifests in everyday life.

Watch the band perform a brand new, exclusive session version of ‘Witness’ from the album for Le Cargo:


17 April – Berlin, Eschschloraque Rümschrümp DETAILS

18 April –Berlin, Eschschloraque Rümschrümp DETAILS