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  • TALKING HEADS - CITIES Jun 5, 2020

    TALKING HEADS - CITIES

    This month in 1980 saw the UK release of the single CITIES by TALKING HEADS (June 1980).

    By 1980, Talking Heads had made themselves a very considerable live force. They took songs from third studio album Fear Of Music to their feasible limits, pushing their derivations of funk or world beats to wire up songs composed of conversation and arbitrary words and ideas, opening or closing them at whim.

    The video here is CITIES, a driven Byrne darts from metropolis to metropolis looking for someplace to live, but he's careening too crazily to see more than random features:

    "Look over there! A dry-ice factory/A good place to get some thinking done."

    The chorus becomes a desperate, self-mocking call for phantom stability.

    The video here is taken from the band’s performance at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 1982.

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    Thank you to everyone who has joined DECADE. As many of you know the page is just me, Paul. I write and research the articles, and edit the videos, often reinventing them entirely. THE CRUNCH. It now takes almost an entire day of unpaid work to put together content for the page. If you could see fit to make a small donation then I would be eternally grateful.

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  • THE RUNAWAYS in JAPAN (1977) Jun 5, 2020

    THE RUNAWAYS – CHERRY BOMB and QUEENS OF NOISE

    This month in 1977, THE RUNAWAYS were on tour in Japan, making appearances on Japanese TV and playing live in Osaka and Tokyo, (June 1977).

    1977 saw The Runaways become the fourth best-selling export music act in the world, just behind Abba, Kiss and Led Zeppelin. When Joan Jett, Cherie Currie, Lita Ford Jackie Fox and Sandy West hit Japan in the summer of that year they almost caused a teenage meltdown. Unlike the States where most of their fans were male, The Runaways were idolised by teenage girls across Japan who mobbed the band when they touched down in Tokyo.

    “I remember some of the girls getting really scared,” recalled Joan Jett. “I was thrilled. That’s what you join a rock ‘n’ roll band for, to cause this kind of craziness. It felt like The Beatles to me.”

    Until the arrival of in-your-face Sunset Strip cherry bombers THE RUNAWAYS, all-girl bands were very much the exception rather than the rule.

    The Runaways, under the tutelage of indefatigable LA pop svengali Kim Fowley, heralded the sea change. Like all pioneers, they were initially ridiculed and reviled, but their influence on subsequent female-led rock n roll is incalculable.

    At a time when bland authenticity was at a premium they were accused of having been manufactured, the finger pointing to their obvious lack of experience in playing instruments; a minus to be imminently inverted into a plus by the emergence of Ramones and Sex Pistols.

    Yet while their material clearly echoed the high drama of the Shangri-Las, their image was not that of bobby-dazzled girls: these ladies were veritable stormtroopers in stilettos, leather-clad juvenile hall delinquents who invariably made their mothers cry, fell foul of the law and didn’t particularly care.

    Cherie Currie (16), Joan Jett (16), Lita Ford (17), Jackie Fox (16) and Sandy West (16) were self-proclaimed ‘Neon Angels On The Road To Ruin’, and it was their very lack of sophistication, both musical and stylistic that made them so irresistible.

    Their riff-driven, post-Kiss primitivism, perfectly showcased on the naive charms of ‘Cherry Bomb’ and ‘You Drive Me Wild’, retains its appeal.

    Shortly after vocalist Cherie Currie absconded, Joan Jett was left to take the helm. The decidedly hard-edged third studio album ‘Waitin’ For The Night’ followed, but the writing was already on the wall for The Runaways. Both Jett and lead guitarist Lita Ford went on to forge reasonably lucrative solo careers, but it is their pioneering work with The Runaways that stands as their greatest, most influential, legacy.

    The video here features The Runaways performing CHERRY BOMB and QUEENS OF NOISE.

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    Thank you to everyone who has joined DECADE. As many of you know the page is just me, Paul. I write and research the articles, and edit the videos, often reinventing them entirely. THE CRUNCH. It now takes almost an entire day of unpaid work to put together content for the page. If you could see fit to make a small donation then I would be eternally grateful.

    Thank you and best wishes, Paul

    PAYPAL: https://www.paypal.me/decade7787

    JUSTGIVING: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/decade77page

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  • THE CRAMPS - YOU GOT GOOD TASTE Jun 5, 2020

    THE CRAMPS - YOU GOT GOOD TASTE

    This month in 1984 saw the release of THE CRAMPS’ box set SMELL OF FEMALE, (June 1984).

    Released on the ‘New Rose’ label, the box set comprised a limited edition 7-track 'Spring Tour 84' set of four COLOURED vinyl 7" records, all tracks being recorded live at the Peppermint Lounge in February 1983.

    Each 7" was in a different unique picture sleeve with all being housed in an individually numbered outer picture slipcase box.

    In 1981, after endless legal wranglings with IRS (Police manager Miles Copeland's record label) a two-year contract was drawn up which The Cramps reluctantly signed, in which they agreed not to record or release any new material whatsoever. Within a week of the contract expiring in 1983, the mini LP Smell Of Female was released on Big Beat and shot straight to the top of the independent charts.

    Recorded over two nights at New York's legendary Peppermint Lounge in late February 1983, the Smell Of Female mini-album was released in November of that year.

    Ironically, it was perhaps the most representative document of their sound to date.

    "Those early IRS records sound so different than how we perceived ourselves," said Ivy, "because we were always this brutal, hard, violent, rocking, loud thing on-stage. Those albums are atmospheric but they also sound like there's a lid on them. The Cramps were always way more in your face than that."

    The video here is YOU GOT GOOD TASTE.

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    Thank you to everyone who has joined DECADE. As many of you know the page is just me, Paul. I write and research the articles, and edit the videos, often reinventing them entirely. THE CRUNCH. It now takes almost an entire day of unpaid work to put together content for the page. If you could see fit to make a small donation then I would be eternally grateful.

    Thank you and best wishes, Paul

    PAYPAL: https://www.paypal.me/decade7787

    JUSTGIVING: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/decade77page

    Read More

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