Future legend records grew from the ashes of hardcore Mod record label Waterloo Sunset.
Like W.S its premiere act was Mod Icon Eleanor Rigby. Loved by many mod but certainly not by all.
Considering she turned down major record deals when asked to turn her back on her mod following we thought she deserved more respect.
It’s interesting to note however that many of those who said they didn’t like her had not even heard her music.
In fact one mod summed up the reason very well. I grew up not liking Eleanor Rigby because I read bad reviews about her music in the Phoenix List, it was only years later I stumbled upon her music on myspace and realised what I’d been missing as I’d never heard the music. She actually made great Mod music. I was puzzled and then learned the person running the Phoenix list had a dark hidden agenda, which eventually got exposed, as many original mods will know by now.
We mention this story in order to say all we ask for with regard to any Future Legend records releases is give them a listen and make up your own mind.
Also FLR is about much more than Eleanor Rigby, Also included in the ranks are The Lambrettas, Studio 68, Ministry of Ska, The Reaction, The Honeycombs and many more.
But lets start at the beginning. One thing pioneered by the label was doing new versions of Cult TV and Film themes. Many Mods loved cult themes like The Avengers, The Man From Uncle, Man In a suitcase, The Prisoner, The Ipcress File, The Self Preservation Society (The Italian Job) James Bond and many Gerry Anderson Themes to name but a few.
The first album ‘Themes from the 60’s Vol.1’ really hit the ground running. With distributor Sony thinking only a few hundred sales were likely it sold many thousands and resulted in a number one hit single ‘You Only Live Twice; by Eleanor Rigby in Italy.
Six themes albums were released in all starting a bit of a trend at the time.
In 1993 groundbreaking band Box Office Poison released their debut track a cover of Eleanor’s ‘1995’ which mod D.J Gary Crowley said was one of the most popular tracks on his show at the time.
After Eleanor’s unexpected hit recorded (For she had long disappeared and was not around to promote it) there was a lot of new interest in her and a ‘Best of Vol.1’ was released in 94 which was good timing as acts like Blur and St Etienne were citing her music as a big influence.
Amongst the cult themes and Box Office Poison releases the most Mod release was ‘The 22 track Waterloo Sunset Story’ CD featuring everything released on this Mod label plus unreleased gems.
A single and EP were released to promote it. The 7” vinyl was a double A side ‘Love on The Phone/Play with fire’ by Eleanor which people called classy mod music. The 2 Bonus tracks on the EP however were more interesting as the introduced the world to sexy Modette Misty Woods doing ‘Wallpaper Man, that was initially written for Eleanor plus her own composition ‘Mod Boy’.
Misty then joined Box Office Poison after the initial singers left and the band returned to their mod roots doing ‘Louie Louie’ for a Dr. Martens Mod compilation ‘Generation to Generation’. This version was voted best ever version of this much covered song by listeners of XFM.
It was released on the bands next EP ‘Think for Yourself’ along with a cover of Bowies ‘Lady Grinning Soul’ and a track written for the film ‘Nightmare on Elm street’.
The Lambrettas came out of retirement to do their last ever release ‘Starsky and Hutch’ For Cult Themes from the 70’s Vol.1 in 1997.
Another scoop for the label was getting the original members of number one hit act ‘The Honeycombs’ out of retirement to do a Bond theme ‘Live and Let Die’ on ‘Cult themes from the 70’s vol.2’, Who can forget their classic ‘Have I the right’ (Come right back).
A number of albums release on the FLR label are now considered classic albums. The one and only Ministry of Ska album ‘Rarin to Go’ is one.
FLR re issued Eleanor Rigby’s ‘Censorship’ album that is listed as a classic album, so much so a whole documentary has just been made about it with Shirley Manson of Garbage saying it was one of the best albums ever made.
Box Office Poisons last album ‘Heavy Breathing Decade’ is now heading that way.
All the Cult themes albums are still highly sought after.
The label did have nearly as many downs as ups which feature in a limited edition anniversary Fanzine ‘The Future Legend Records Story’
(Where you can also check out all the releases although some are now sold out and deleted).
Despite Future Legends hard-core fans still buying vinyl and CD most days
A new breed of people are buying the downloads and the two current best sellers are ‘Mod Tunes: Three Button Legacy’ and ‘The Themes Bond ..James Bond’ featuring the labels great Bond covers that John Barry himself called the best ever covers.
The best selling CD at present is ‘Forever Pop Noir’ by innovative band ‘Psykick Holiday’
The best selling vinyl LP is the Scooter Picture Disc ‘The Best of Eleanor Rigby Vol.2 that also features Steve Marriott and PP Arnold. (But this is about to sell out and be deleted)
In all the label has released 33 albums and 21 singles. This is a very brief potted history of the label it did a lot more over 20 years. Visit the label and get the fanzine to learn more.