This is a post I’ve poached directly from the excellent Zamboni Soundtracks, drugs who’s got an embarassment of riches pouring out from in-between his lines of CSS code. I’ve been listening to an awful lot of stuff from his site recently, more like the discog of former Temptations vocalist David Ruffin — and this one also hit me up the head sideways. Solid post-punk junk! Zamboni sez:

Considering this band was a cross-section of Hoboken, NJ, New Orleans and Bloomington, it is right up my alley! Featuring members of MX-80 Sound, this is actually 3 7″s compiled by Gulcher, although originally released by a Gulcher-friendly Hoboken label. -Ian!

Mark Bingham flirted with a number of projects prior to compiling the works of Social Climbers, including production work for MX-80 Sound and collaborations with New York’s Glenn Branca. A. Leroy also worked with Charles Moulton, a choreographer, creating the music for his “Precision Ball Passing” pieces in the early 80s. Social Climbers’ only album was indeed a compilation of three excellent, but poorly pressed 7” flexis put out by the band. Armed with just a couple of guitars, a rhythm box and an organ, you’d be forgiven for thinking that this album may not offer anything special, or that Social Climbers would simply mirror the b-movie aspirations of their New York peers, Comateens (which they do here there, particularly on ‘Western World’). however, Bingham & Co. conjure up a highly original mix of quietly neurotic post-punk restraint. both the organ and rhythm boxes are used highly effectively, thanks to subtle production trickery and clever programming, neatly offset by the geeky garage-band vocals. tracks like ‘Chicken 80’, ‘Chris & Debbie’ and ‘That’s Why’ are shining examples of the very best of post-punk DIY, thanks to both memorable tunes and a cool, if insular, atmosphere of moderate despair. as the album wanders comfortably over the stylistic map, each track in some way hits the spot, and most hit more than one. Every lo-fi collector should get to hear this. and what a tragedy that it was never followed up.


Social Climbers – s/t LP (ZIP file)

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682 Responses to SOCIAL CLIMBERS

  1. Creatured says:

    Oh wow, I used to have this LP. I still ahve the cassette I made of my LP, but it is on a crappy Sony or Scotch cassette, a Type II, but still phased all to hell as I recall.
    Thanks for anutter rare ass recording.

  2. James says:

    Thank you for posting this! I’ve been obsessed with “Hello Texas” after hearing it one of the earliest volumes of the Messthetics series (on one of the Homework volumes, I think). I had no idea they had recorded so much else.

  3. Ian Zamboni says:

    Killer! I was just wondering if you read my blog dealie and you do! Mutual admiration!

  4. king of england says:

    This is a great album. I’ve heard it thrice since yesterday.

    Zamboni guy needs to post .zips!

  5. Ian Zamboni says:

    king of england needs to install any of the dozens of rar programs!

  6. John says:

    I have some video of the Social Climbers, never knew they made a record.

    You can watch it at — look for the LIVE SHOW segments. They appear in the first several.