UK
2 Tone
CHS TT14
7" vinyl
Released: 1980-08-04

<a href='/display/?rank140'>Mantovani</a>
<a href='/display/?rank140'>Mantovani</a>
<a href='/display/?rank140'>Mantovani</a>
<a href='/display/?rank140'>Mantovani</a>

Side 1
Mantovani

Side 2
Away

One of 2 Tone's more elusive bands who unfortunately also hold the title for releasing the first single on the label to completely miss the charts. Hailing from Coventry, The Swinging Cats were a band whose sound was far removed from the traditional 2 Tone vibe, with this, their sole release for the label owing more to Latin America than the sounds of 1960's Jamaica. The bossa nova swing sound of Mantovani failed to catch the record buying public's imagination, even with the first 20,000 singles retailing for a mere 50p, which was less than half the price of the average 7" at the time. The critics where even less charitable with the NME asking "Has the 2 Tone quality control gone on holiday or what?"

Recorded at Woodbine Studios in Leamington Spa, Mantovani, featuring Brad from The Specials on drums, and backed by the much more palatable 'Away', the single was released to coincide with the band's support slot on the More Specials tour. The band had previously been added to the bill of The Selecter's Pressure Tour (or the 2 Tone 2 Tour as it has become known over the years), but this added exposure did little to endear them to audiences who came to listen to one thing and one thing only: Ska. The band got fed up with the poor reception and violence at gigs and soon folded with their planned second single Greek Tragedy well and truly shelved. Several line-up changes didn't exactly improve the chances of the band staying together either.

The single was a brave attempt at a variation on the 2 Tone theme but with commercial interest in the label starting to fade, it had little chance of success.


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