Exorcising Ghosts

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Exorcising Ghosts
Japan - Exorcising Ghosts.jpg
Compilation album by
ReleasedOctober 1984
Length88:02 (CD)
  • Richard Barbieri
  • Steve Jansen
  • Mick Karn
  • Steve Nye
  • John Punter
  • David Sylvian
Japan chronology
Exorcising Ghosts
The Very Best of Japan
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic4/5 stars[1]

Exorcising Ghosts is a compilation album by the British band Japan, released in October 1984 by record label Virgin.


Exorcising Ghosts was compiled and produced in consultation with lead singer David Sylvian two years after Japan dissolved. It features three recordings from the band's early career on the Hansa Records label (such as 1979's Quiet Life) but mainly focuses on material from their two studio albums on Virgin Records; Gentlemen Take Polaroids (1980) and Tin Drum (1981).

Besides top 40 hit singles like "Quiet Life", "Visions of China", "Ghosts", and "Nightporter", the double-album set includes album tracks like "Methods of Dance", "Talking Drum" and "Swing" alongside a selection of rarities such as the single B-sides "A Foreign Place" and "Life Without Buildings", the 1981 remix of "Taking Islands in Africa", the instrumental studio recording "Voices Raised in Welcome, Hands Held in Prayer" included on 1983's live album Oil on Canvas and the 12" mix of "The Art of Parties".

As to fit the album onto a single disc, the original CD release omitted five of the sixteen tracks; "Swing", "A Foreign Place", "Taking Islands in Africa", "Sons of Pioneers" and "Voices Raised in Welcome, Hands Held in Prayer".


Exorcising Ghosts reached No. 45 in the UK Albums Chart[2] and was certified Gold (100,000 copies) by the BPI in February 1997.[citation needed]

Seven years after the release of Exorcising Ghosts, Japan recorded a new studio album, but under the new moniker Rain Tree Crow.

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by David Sylvian unless otherwise noted

Vinyl LP version[edit]

Side A[edit]

  1. "Methods Of Dance" - 6:50
  2. "Swing" - 7:04
  3. "Gentlemen Take Polaroids" - 7:08
  4. "Quiet Life" - 4:52

Side B[edit]

  1. "A Foreign Place" - 3:11 (Sylvian/Barbieri)
    • Instrumental, originally released as B-side of single "Quiet Life", 1980
  2. "Nightporter" - 6:48
  3. "My New Career" - 3:52
  4. "The Other Side Of Life" - 7:25

Side C[edit]

  1. "Visions of China" - 3:38 (Sylvian/Jansen)
  2. "Taking Islands In Africa" (Steve Nye Remix) (Ryuichi Sakamoto/David Sylvian) - 4:53
  3. "Ghosts" - 4:32
  4. "Sons Of Pioneers" - 7:07 (Sylvian/Karn)

Side D[edit]

  1. "Voices Raised In Welcome, Hands Held In Prayer" - 3:30 (Sylvian/Jansen)
  2. "Life Without Buildings" - 6:35
    • Originally released as B-side of 12" single "The Art of Parties", 1981
  3. "Talking Drum" (Edited intro) - 3:32
  4. "The Art Of Parties" (12" Mix) - 6:46
    • Original version appears on 1981 album Tin Drum

Cassette version[edit]

Side 1

  1. Methods of Dance
  2. Swing
  3. Gentlemen Take Polaroids
  4. Quiet Life
  5. A Foreign Place
  6. Nightporter
  7. My New Career
  8. The Other Side of Life

Side 2

  1. Visions of China
  2. Taking Islands in Africa
  3. Ghosts
  4. Sons of Pioneers
  5. Voices Raised In Welcome, Hands Held In Prayer
  6. Life Without Buildings
  7. Talking Drum
  8. The Art of Parties

CD release (1984)[edit]

1."Methods of Dance"Gentlemen Take Polaroids6:50
2."Gentlemen Take Polaroids"Gentlemen Take Polaroids7:03
3."Quiet Life"Quiet Life4:51
4."Nightporter"Nightporter 12"6:48
5."My New Career"Gentlemen Take Polaroids3:51
6."The Other Side of Love"Quiet Life7:24
7."Visions of China"Tin Drum3:38
8."Ghosts"Tin Drum4:32
9."Life Without Buildings"The Art of Parties 12" B-side6:34
10."Talking Drum"Tin Drum3:31
11."The Art of Parties"The Art of Parties 12"6:46


  1. ^ Raggett, Ned (2011). "Exorcising Ghosts - Japan | AllMusic". allmusic.com. Retrieved 3 August 2011.
  2. ^ Japan albums Official charts

External links[edit]