Friday, September 30, 2011

Ipso Facto – Give it To Her EP (Zodiak Records, 1984)

This will be a short entry I suspect, given the almost complete dearth of information available on line. Research here is made doubly difficult by the emergence of the much more recent all girl outfit of the same name who inconveniently have been widely labeled  as “Goth”. (For the record, they’re not. But from what little I’ve heard, are not too bad either, and I suspect fans of Ladytron might find much to appreciate there).

Materialising out of Yorkshire, Ipso Facto had an ever-changing line-up revolving around their one constant member and vocalist Eb.

Their first release was the Mannequin 7” (IF, 1983) after which original bassist Ged Warren and some of the other early line up appear to have parted company and formed something called Sedition who released a solitary 12” The Mighty Device (Fon Records, 1986) which despite being produced by Cabaret Voltaire’s Richard Kirk, sadly didn’t really seem to get them anywhere.

Ipso Facto however, soldier on regardless, releasing their single biggest project, the Give it to Her EP/12” (Zodiak, 1984). Apparently only 500 copies of the original were pressed.

Somewhat oddly, and despite sheer weight of opinion being against them, the usually reliable has this release listed as “Life is a Cabaret – Is it?” presumably confused by the cover art on the album’s flipside. Still more confusingly, they appear to have the track listing in the wrong order despite it being printed very clearly on the front cover art. If only one had an original pressing to work out how on Earth they arrived at this conclusion.

The flip-side of Give It To Her. Eb didn't 
just do "vocals" - he did "words".

 It’s actually a quite engaging little record, despite what it lacks in the originality stakes. Curiously, the B side is actually stronger than the A side, although perhaps that’s simply my opinion. Although one can’t help but feel that Eb just really, really wanted to be the next Pete Murphy, it makes for a genuinely enjoyable disc. If you like Bauhaus, you'll like this. I Suggest you pick it up.

Give it to Her


Femme Etait Un Homme

Another two singles exist. There was the Noir Doir 7” (IF, 1984) and finally the Glass Tigers 7” (Zodiak Records, 1985). For a band so relatively obscure and about who so little online information is available, it seems quite remarkable that both the Give it to Her 12” and the Glass Tigers 7” are both readily available for download on iTunes. (Sweet Lord – did I really just give a plug to one of my most hated pieces of software?)

All this leaves us with one final mystery:
IF records apparently released just three pressings, the first two of which were the Ipso Facto 7”s Mannequin and Noir Doir. This and the label’s name may well lead those of a more suspicious mind to ponder whether the IF label was actually owned by Ipso Facto themselves. The real mystery here though comes with the enigmatic third pressing. It’s an untitled 7” (1985), allegedly from the Netherlands, and just to add to the oddness, the A & B sides were recorded at different speeds. Most interesting though, it comes from a band curiously titled In Formation (note the initials).  Did Eb actually do a little side project following Ipso Facto’s demise?

This warrants further investigation – we’ll get back to you.

Track Listing:
  1. Give it to Her
  2. Blue Angel
  3. Greta
  4. La Femme Etait Un Homme

Line Up: Eb Aneza(vocals), Vivienne (guitar), David Kane (bass), J. Fenn (drums), Steven Masters (saxophone)


  1. The IF you mention is a different band from the Netherlands. There's a mistake on discogs. In Formation and IF (7) are one and the same:

  2. Most interesting. Thank you Mr Hairpin!
    Discogs do seem to have made a bit of a mess with this one don't they?