Monday, April 09, 2007

Video Classics - McLaren and Madness

I've gone pop, turn back now if you can't deal. Two great videos, two great songs. Pretty much a founding father of punk, this is what Malcolm McLaren was up to by 1984. Amazing what the passage of a little time will do. This jam is from his first album as a solo artist, the Trevor Horn-produced Duck Rock (1983). Malcolm McLaren, especially in this video, is bizarrely fascinating to me, creepy but endearing, an awkward armchair ethnomusicologist with northern soul.

Malcolm McLaren - Double Dutch

Dudes, I'm adding this one after the fact because I just cant resist - pure 80's pop goodness. From 1984's Fans, McLaren bastardizes Puccini's Madame Butterfly and a few other classics. "Take it away Cio Cio..." haha - Puccini is rolling in his grave. McLaren probably has a lot of people rolling in their graves come to think of it.

Malcolm McLaren - Madame Butterfly

And the Madness video for 1981's "It Must be Love" single. These guys were sharp.

Madness - It Must Be Love

Friday, April 06, 2007


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Ludus was based around Mancunian artist and singer Linder Sterling, who's swooning, shrill voice has been described as "an exquisite torture." That's pretty accurate I'd say. LTM reissued The Visit EP (1980) and The Seduction LP (1982) on one disc in 2002. Here are some tracks.

From The Visit:

Ludus - Sightseeing
Ludus - Unveil

From The Seduction:

Ludus - My Cherry is in Sherry
Ludus - Mirror Mirror

Full Ludus story here

Buy the album here

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Strawberry Switchblade - hot hot hot

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Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

These bitches were HOT. For more photos go here. Fashion mavericks - they're like brunette british Olsens with talent. Have a bit of that psychedelic punk thing Rubella Ballet had going on, a little Robert Smith, etc. Rubella Ballet + Robert Smith + Olsens = something close to Strawberry Switchblade style.

A while back I posted a link to a bunch of SS demos and radio sessions. For those that didn't check that out, I've gathered a few of my favorites together. "Dance" is an early version of "Since Yesterday" from their self-titled debut album (1985). Listening to them side-by-side you can see the evolution they underwent from Postcard-esque indie pop to bubblegum dance pop. It wasn't a total evolution though, if the gothy beauteousness of "Nothing Changes," also from 1985, is any indication.

Strawberry Switchblade - Dance (BBC Jensen Session Oct 1982)
Strawberry Switchblade - Secrets (Peel Session Oct 1982)
Strawberry Switchblade - Trees and Flowers (Peel Session Oct 1982)

Strawberry Switchblade - Since Yesterday (1985)
Strawberry Switchblade - Life's Full of Wonders (Peel Session Feb 1985)
Strawberry Switchblade - Nothing Changes (Peel Session Feb 1985)