Categories
Electronic Music Industrial Punk Song of the Day

Song of the Day (The Chain): The Prodigy – Firestarter

Day 40. The connection between Close (To The Edit) & Firestarter is that Firestarter prominently uses a sample from The Art Of Noise’s tune. The female vocal “Hey!”

Firestarter was a huge commercial hit in the UK when it was released, topping the charts & fusing Dance music & Rock music in a way that was entirely original & fresh. Sampled, mangled guitars (from The Breeders), ultra-heavy drum breaks (Ten City) & the late, great Keith Flint’s John Lydon influenced Punk vocals combined to create something truly thrilling indeed.

I’m the trouble starter, punkin’ instigator
I’m the fear addicted, a danger illustrated

I’m a firestarter, twisted firestarter
You’re a firestarter, twisted firestarter

I’m a firestarter, twisted firestarter

I’m the bitch you hated, filth infatuated, yeah
I’m the pain you tasted, fell intoxicated

I’m a firestarter, twisted firestarter
You’re the firestarter, twisted firestarter

I’m the self inflicted, mind detonator, yeah
I’m the one infected, twisted animator

I’m a firestarter, twisted firestarter
You’re the firestarter, twisted firestarter

I’m a firestarter, twisted firestarter starter

Keep up to date with the Song of the Day (The Chain) Spotify playlist.

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Post Punk Punk Song of the Day

Song of the Day (The Chain): Public Image Ltd. – Public Image

Day 36. In my mind, The Clash & The Sex Pistols are the main bands of the first wave of British Punk. So from Mick Jone’s Post-Punk band (Big Audio Dynamite) to Johnny Rotten/John Lydon’s (Public Image Ltd.)

Public Image is probably the PIL song closest, sonically, to the Sex Pistols but it does have much stronger Pop vibes. The bass heavy production & the reverb-soaked guitar tone create a unique sound which, unfortunately, I haven’t really heard since.

Hello. Hello. Hello. Hello. Hello. Hello.
Ha, Ha, Ha, Ha, Ha.
You never listen to word that I said
You only seen me
For the clothes that I wear
Or did the interest go so much deeper
It must have been
The colour of my hair.

Public image.
What you wanted was never made clear
Behind the image was ignorance and fear
You hide behind his public machine
Still follow the same old scheme.

Public image.
Two sides to every story
Somebody had to stop me
I’m not the same as when I began
I will not be treated as property.

Public image.
Two sides to every story
Somebody had to stop me
I’m not the same as when I began
It’s not a game of Monopoly.

Public image.
Public image you got what you wanted
The Public Image belongs to me
It’s my entrance
My own creation
My grand finale
My goodbye

Public image.
Public image.
Goodbye.

Keep up to date with the Song of the Day (The Chain) Spotify playlist.

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Categories
New Wave Post Punk Punk Song of the Day

Song of the Day (The Chain): Big Audio Dynamite – E=MC2

Day 35. The Slits, in the DIY, ‘anyone can be a musician’, ‘just do it’ attitude of the early Punk scene, formed before they even knew how to play their instruments. They learned on the fly. In the very early days, according to legend (& multiple sources), Mick Jones (of The Clash) would tune their guitars for them. After leaving The Clash, Mick Jones formed Big Audio Dynamite.

E=MC2 is drum machine & synth driven Post-Punk. Rhythmic & futuristic.

Somebody I never met 
But in a way I know
Didn’t think that you could get
So much from a picture show
Man dies first reel
People ask what’s the deal?
This ain’t how it’s supposed to be
Don’t like no aborigine

Took a trip in Powis Square
Pop star dyed his hair
No fans to scream and shout
When mobsters came to flush him out
Gangland slaying underground
New identity must be found
On the left bank for a while
Insanity Bohemian style

Ritual ideas relativity
Only buildings no people prophecy
Time slide place to hide nudge reality
Foresight minds wide magic imagery, oh oh

Met a dwarf that was no good
Dressed like little Red Riding Hood
Bad habit taking life
A calling card a six inch knife
Ran off really fast
Mumbled something ’bout the past
Best sex I’ve ever seen
As if each moment was the last
Drops of blood color slide
Funeral for his bride
But it’s him who’s really dead
Gets to take the funeral ride

Ritual ideas relativity
Only buildings no people prophecy
Time slide place to hide nudge reality
Foresight minds wide magic imagery, oh oh
Oh oh
Oh oh
Oh oh

Space guy fell from the sky
Scratched my head and wondered why
Time slide into time
Across international dateline
Scientist eats bubblegum
Hall of fame baseball
Senators a Hoodlum
Big chiefs in the hall

Ritual ideas relativity
Only buildings no people prophecy
Time slide place to hide nudge reality
Foresight minds wide magic imagery, oh oh

Stray thoughts fear to tread
Placed upon the screen instead
She’s my flame too hot to hold
Had to settle for her cold

Blood lust, Greek god, gold discovery
Gone bust, tight wad, slow recovery
Axe job, flame thrower, iron bar and gun
Betting shop, New owner, A walk in the sun

Ritual ideas relativity
Only buildings no people prophecy
Time slide place to hide nudge reality
Foresight minds wide magic imagery, oh oh

Spread the news the Maestro’s back
With a beat box soundtrack
The King of brains, Queen of the sack’
Executives have heart attack
It’s assault course celluloid
The money makers would avoid
Sometimes notions get reversed
Center of the universe

Ritual ideas relativity
Only buildings no people prophecy
Time slide place to hide nudge reality
Foresight minds wide magic imagery, oh oh
Oh oh
Oh oh
Oh oh

Ritual ideas relativity
Only buildings no people prophecy
Timeslide place to hide nudge reality
Foresight minds wide magic imagery, oh oh
Oh oh
Ritual ideas relativity
Only buildings no people prophecy
Timeslide place to hide nudge reality
Foresight minds wide magic imagery, oh oh, oh oh

Keep up to date with the Song of the Day (The Chain) Spotify playlist.

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Post Punk Punk Song of the Day

Song of the Day (The Chain): The Slits – Earthbeat

Day 34. Bit of an obvious choice today. Yesterday we had Neneh Cherry & today we have The Slits, a band Neneh Cherry sang with. I almost didn’t go with this choice, as it seemed too obvious, but it was too good an excuse to play The Slits.

Earthbeat is taken from The Slits second album, 1981’s Return Of The Giant Slits. Earthbeat is percussion led Post-Punk excellence. Neneh Cherry sings backing vocals on this & appears in the video.

Earthbeat it pauses in space
Trippin’ trippin’ trippin’ through a holy sky
Trippin’ trippin’ trippin’ trippin’ through a holy sky

Even the air is dizzy earthbeat
Even the leaves are wheezing earthbeat
Even the clouds are coughing earthbeat
Sun beats furiously
Creatures basking around

Future yobs
Future you’re to leave is small
Yobs yobs
Future you’re to leave is small

Even the earth is dizzy earthbeat
Even the leaves are wheezing
Even the clouds are coughing
Earthbeat earthbeat
Burning energy illicitly
Lightbulbs flickering

Bhanya lei
It’ll strech steeply
Bhanya lei
It’ll strech steeply

Even the earth is dizzy
Even the clouds are coughing
Even the leaves are wheezing

Even the earth is dizzy earthbeat
Even the leaves are wheezing
Even the clouds are coughing

Earthbeats earthbeats earthbeats earthbeats
Earthbeats earthbeats earthbeats earthbeats

Even the earth is dizzy
Even the leaves are wheezing
Even the clouds are coughing

Earthbeats earthbeats earthbeats earthbeats…

Keep up to date with the Song of the Day (The Chain) Spotify playlist.

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Post Punk Punk Song of the Day

Song of the Day (The Chain): The Stranglers – Golden Brown

Day 21. As discussed in yesterdays post, Massive Attack’s Angel was featured memorably in the soundtrack for the Guy Ritchie move Snatch. While looking at what else is on the soundtrack for todays entry, I couldn’t choose anything other than Golden Brown by The Stranglers. Mainly in tribute to keyboardist Dave Greenfield who sadly passed away back in May.

Golden Brown is an unusual song with a strangely baroque feel. The composition is centred around a looping harpsichord riff, eccentric time signature (3/4 but every fourth bar is in 4/4) & lyrics dealing with addiction, desperation & dependency. An unusual radio & chart hit, it appeared on Top Of The Pops & reaching number 2 in the UK Pop charts.

Golden Brown texture like sun
Lays me down with my mind she runs
Throughout the night
No need to fight
Never a frown with Golden Brown

Every time just like the last
On her ship tied to the mast
To distant lands
Takes both my hands
Never a frown with Golden Brown

Golden Brown, finer temptress
Through the ages she’s heading west
From far away
Stays for a day
Never a frown with Golden Brown

(La la la la la la la la leeeah)

Never a frown
With Golden Brown
Never a frown
With Golden Brown

Keep up to date with the Song of the Day (The Chain) Spotify playlist.

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Categories
Indie Rock No Wave Post Punk Punk

Desolation Centre – Underground Music Festivals Documentary

Desolation Center, a new documentary charting the underground, DIY, experimental music & art festivals which were put on in the California desert in the mid-’80’s, is coming to streaming services on the 23rd June.

Produced by Stuart Swezey, Desolation Center is a mix of archive footage (including live performances) & interviews chronicling the chaotic & loud phenomena which would go on to inspire larger, more official desert festivals like Burning Man.

Among the bands which performed at Desolation Center events (& appear in the film) wer Sonic Youth, Minutemen, Meat Puppets, Perry Farrell, Redd Kross, Einstürzende Neubauten, Survival Research Laboratories, and Savage Republic.

Ahead of the release, a couple of excellent film clips have been released. The first show’s us fantastic footage of a psychedelic Meat Puppets performance where they asked for the lights to be switched off so they could play by moonlight. The second features Perry Farrel (Janes Addiction) & George Hurley (Minutemen) talking about playing a show on a boat in the LA harbour.

If that’s got you interested, check out the theatrical trailer from last August.

Categories
Funk Metal Politics Punk

Song of the Day (BLM): Rage Against The Machine – Down Rodeo

Day 9. Rage Against The Machine, particularly guitarist Tom Morello have been in the news quite a bit this week. As a revolutionary socialist band who have been burning Stars & Stripes & wearing Hammer & Sickles since the early ’90’s it is quite surprising that RATM have any right-wing fans at all. Somehow they do. And these right-wing fans have been getting very upset about Tom Morello expressing his opinions about the current revolutionary actions of the Black Lives Matter movement. This is one of them.

Needless to say, Morello’s response was both witty & humorous. A true Twitter professional.

Check out this equally brutal Twitter putdown from a couple of years ago. Just glorious. Textbook.

Down Rodeo is a scathing blast of metallic funk. It’s lyrics deal with systematic racism, the shameful legacy of slavery & forward looking revolutionary ideas. A personal highlight for me.

Yeah I’m rollin’ down Rodeo wit a shotgun
These people ain’t seen a brown skin man
Since their grandparents bought one

So now I’m rollin’ down Rodeo wit a shotgun
These people ain’t seen a brown skin man
Since their grandparents bought one

So now I’m rollin’ down Rodeo wit a shotgun

Bangin’ this bolo tight on this solo flight can’t fight alone
Funk tha track my verbs fly like tha family stone
Tha pen devils set that stage for tha war at home
Locked wit out a wage ya standin’ in tha drop zone
The clockers born starin’ at an empty plate
Momma’s torn hands cover her sunken face
We hungry but them belly full
The structure is set ya neva change it with a ballot pull
In tha ruins there’s a network for tha toxic rock
School yard ta precinct, suburb ta project block
Bosses broke south for new flesh and a factory floor
The remains left chained to the powder war

Can’t waste a day when the night brings a hearse
So make a move and plead the fifth ’cause ya can’t plead the first
Can’t waste a day when the night brings a hearse
So now I’m rollin’ down Rodeo wit a shotgun
These people ain’t seen a brown skin man
Since their grandparents bought one

Yes I’m rollin’ down Rodeo wit a shotgun
These people ain’t seen a brown skin man
Since their grandparents bought one

So now I’m rollin’ down Rodeo wit a shotgun

Bare witness to tha sickest shot while suckas get romantic
They ain’t gonna send us campin’ like they did my man Fred Hampton
Still we lampin’ still clockin’ dirt for our sweat
A ballots dead so a bullet’s what I get
A thousand years they had tha tools
We should be takin’ ’em
Fuck tha G-ride I want the machines that are makin’ em
Our target straight wit a room full of armed pawn to
Off tha kings out tha west side at dawn

Can’t waste a day when the night brings a hearse
Make a move and plead the fifth ’cause ya can’t plead the first
Can’t waste a day when the night brings a hearse
So now I’m rollin’ down Rodeo wit a shotgun
These people ain’t seen a brown skin man
Since their grandparents bought one

Yeah I’m rollin’ down Rodeo wit a shotgun
These people ain’t seen a brown skin man
Since their grandparents bought one

Yeah I’m rollin’ down Rodeo wit a shotgun

The rungs torn from the ladder can’t reach the tumour
One god, one market, one truth, one consumer

Just a quiet peaceful dance!
Just a quiet peaceful dance!
Just a quiet peaceful dance!
Just a quiet peaceful dance!
Just a quiet peaceful dance for the things we’ll never have
Just a quiet peaceful dance for the things we don’t have

While looking for the YouTube video for Down Rodeo, I came across this excellent video of a man reacting to it for the first time. His enthusiasm is so infectious that I just had to share this with you as well. I was especially interested that the line he picked out as a stand out was one of the most revolutionary, “Fuck tha G-ride I want the machines that are makin’ em.” We don’t want the shitty scraps from the capitalists tables, we want the means of production.

Looking for some great music to listen to? Why not check out the Song of the Day (BLM) Spotify playlist.

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Categories
History Punk Rock

Proto Punk at The Rowing Club, MC5 in York, 1972

MC5, 1969

During the research for my series of articles about the near-mythical Pink Floyd gig at New Earswick Folk Hall, it came to my attention that Michigan Proto Punk legends, the MC5, performed at a venue in York which I had preciously not heard of.

As a fan of Punk, music & its various offshoots, I am a fan of the MC5. They are held as a foundation of the genre. A semi-militant, anti-Vietnam, furious live band, their debut album was recorded live at Detroit’s Grande Ballroom on October 30th & 31st 1968. You’ve probably heard Kick Out The Jams & it’s incendiary, profane intro, if nothing else. That perfect moment of rebellious Rock and Roll energy is seared into the history of Rock music.

So, my first inkling about this gig was a letter printed in the York Press, dated 24th July 2006, by Roy Hughes. You may remember he was the DJ & compere at the Tinned Chicken Club, the club night at the Folk Hall in New Earswick, which hosted ’60’s Psyche bands like Pink Floyd & Procol Harum. In the letter, which is titled Definitive Record, Roy confirms that MC5 did perform at The Rowing Club in 1972. He has some other interesting information in this letter:

The following day they appeared at Wembley Stadium with Little Richard, Jerry Lee Lewis and Chuck Berry.

The bass player was a member of York band Gideon’s Few, who joined MC5 in Germany and remained on tour with them throughout Europe and USA for nearly a year. He is, incidentally, my brother Derek!

So Roy’s brother was Derek Hughes, who replaced original bass player Michael Davis, who was practically forced out of the band for Heroin abuse. Derek Hughes played with them for the majority of 1972.

a poster for Syd Barrett’s band, Stars.

In other Pink Floyd related news, around this time MC5 played a gig in Cambridge with Syd Barrett’s band, Stars. Barrett had left Pink Floyd in 1968.

After reaching out to the same York Past & Present Facebook group that provided me with so much information about the Pink Floyd gig, I have received account from group member Mike Stewart.

He recalls that the gig was “Loud!” & that it was “quite a coup for the venue.” He thinks that the band added the York date at last minute to fill in a spare night while travelling up and down the country. The Rowing Club apparently held “progressive/heavy rock discos every Saturday night.” He remarked how “not many bands performed with such high-octane energy in those days.”

Edgar Broughton Band 

Mike also remembers seeing Psychedelic Rockers, the Edgar Broughton Band at The Rowing Club. I hadn’t heard of Edgar Broughton Band before, but I am listening to them now & their sound is a heavy, psyched up Blues Rock. Shades of Black Sabbath. I’m interested in listening further so expect a review in the near future.

The York gig is not listed in this fan managed gig guide on the Concerts Wiki, but it looks like the gig probably took place in the June of 1972. Other gigs in the local vicinity, Leeds & Scarborough, seem to bear this out.

Listed June gigs from 1972, Concerts Wiki

Another York Past & Present member, Brian Walker, recalls how he could not believe the MC5 gig was happening at the time. There was no advertising, as such, and the news of it was spread by word of mouth. He believes it may have been a warmup gig before they played a few other dates, so perhaps it could have taken place at the end of May, before the Leeds City Hall gig on June 1st.

As for the venue, I assume it was the same building as houses the York City Rowing Club today (pictured above). Though I am not sure. York Past & Present user says he took over DJ responsibilities in 1976 from predecessor, Paul Blitz. So the Saturday rock nights must have gone on for quite a while. I’d be interested to hear from anyone who has more information about the venue, so don’t hesitate to get in touch if you remember it.

For now, that is all I have been able to find out. If anything else significant comes up about either the gig or the venue, there may be a follow up to this blogpost.

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Categories
Punk Reggae Song of the Day

Song of the Day (BLM): Bad Brains – Banned In DC

Day 6. I personally have always believed that the fury & DIY rebellion of Punk & Reggae were as much influences on the attitude of Hip Hop as Soul & Funk were on it’s sonic attributes.

Bad Brains are a Rastafarian Hardcore Punk & Reggae band from Washington DC. They were one of the first, & fastest, bands to play that particular genre of Punk Rock & were huge influences on everyone from Minor Threat & Black Flag to Nirvana & The Beastie Boys.

Banned In DC is a furious blast of hardcore energy which set the sonic blueprint for Hardcore Punk & cemented Bad Brains place as key players in Punk Rock.

Banned in D.C. with a thousand more places to go.
Gonna swim the Atlantic, cause that’s the only place I can go.

You, you can’t hurt me, why?! I’m banned in D.C. D.C.

We, we got ourselves, gonna sing it, gonna love it, gonna work it out to any length.
No worry, don’t worry, about what people say.
We got ourselves, we gonna make it anyway.

You, you can’t hurt me, why I’m banned in D.C. D.C. D.C.

And if you ban us from your clubs, it’s the right time, with the right mind.
And if you think we really care, then you won’t find in my mind.
Noooo! You can’t afford, to close your doors, so soon no more.

My oh my i lay you down upon the ground so soon no more.
Nooo you can’t afford to close your doors so soon no more.

My oh my i let you down upon the grounddddddd

Looking for some excellent music to listen to? Check out the Song of the Day (BLM) Spotify playlist.

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Categories
Indie Rock Music Post Punk Punk Song of the Day

Song of the Day (A-Z): Fugazi – Waiting Room

Day 23 (W) & here we are, Post-Hardcore perfection. Waiting Room by Fugazi is a spiky slice of furious & bouncy Punk Perfection. It’s an ode to the DIY work ethic which Fugazi are famous for. I’m including two videos because the live one has terrible sound, but demonstrates Waiting Room’s power to electrify an audience like few other songs can. Don’t you just want to be there?

A better audio quality on this version:

I am a patient boy
I wait, I wait, I wait, I wait
My time is like water down a drain

Everybody’s moving,
Everybody’s moving,
Everybody’s moving, moving, moving, moving
Please don’t leave me to remain

I’m in the waiting room, I don’t want the news
I cannot use it
I don’t want the news
I won’t live by it
Sitting outside of town
Everybody’s always down
Tell me why?
Because, they can’t get up
Ah, come on and get up
Come on and get up

But I don’t sit idly by
I’m planning a big surprise
I’m gonna fight for what I wanna be
And I won’t make the same mistakes (’cause I know)
Because I know how much time that wastes (and function)
Function is the key

I’m in the waiting room, I don’t want the news
I cannot use it
I don’t want the news
I won’t live by it
Sitting outside of town
Everybody’s always down
Tell me why?
Because, they can’t get up
Ah, come on and get up
I’m from the waiting room

Sitting in the waiting room
Sitting in the waiting room
Sitting in the waiting room
Sitting in the waiting room (tell me why)
Because, they can’t get up

Stuck for something to listen to? Why not wrap your ears around this playlist of my Song of the Day (A-Z) series.

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