On Tuesday, September 18th, club music preservationists Strut Records will release the second installment of its Fac. Dance series, a collection of lost 12-inches and rareties from Manchester’s storied Factory Records imprint, known for championing infectious beats and post-punk genre-bending in equal measure. As testament to the foresight of founder Tony Wilson and Joy Division manager Rob Gretton, you’ll find a lot of canonical names here—ESG, A Certain Ratio, The Durutti Column—but you’ll also find a few lesser known artists, like Minny Pops and Ad Infinitum, whose electronic cover of ’60s instrumental song “Telstar” by The Tornadoes re-imagines the famous melody with vocoded vocals and a bouncy beat. (Allegedly, leading lady and Factory employee Lindsay Reade enlisted the aid of New Order’s Peter Hook, A Certain Ratio’s Andy Connell and Martin Moscrop and even a choir boy to ensure that “Telstar” would be a hit, but they had to rework it dramatically when song author Joe Meek’s publishers refused to approve the lyrics she had written). Fac. Dance 02 comes with liners full of biographical background courtesy of Factory biographer James Nice. In other Factory records arcana, the label just released this long-lost, archival live video of German synth-pop group Shark Vegas.
Stream: Ad Infinitum, “Telstar”