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Today an Aetix ladies day of sorts
Poly Styrene became X-Ray Spex' s public face, and remains one of the most memorable front-women to emerge from the punk movement.Unorthodox in appearance, she wore thick braces on her teeth and once stated that "I said that I wasn't a sex symbol and that if anybody tried to make me one I'd shave my head tomorrow".
After a six-month long audition process for a lead singer, the band hired 14 year old Annabella Lwin. Famously, coinciding with her nude posing for album coverwork, her mother alleged exploitation of a minor for immoral purposes, and instigated a Scotland Yard investigation. As a result the band was only allowed to leave the UK after McLaren promised not to promote Lwin as a "sex kitten" ..right
Rip Rig & Panic strayed from more conventional post-punk, mixing avantgarde elements with jazz and led by Cherry's innovative pop/soul singing style.
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Perhaps the most utopian aspect of the U.K. punk scene was that it offered creative, articulate young people the opportunity to express themselves, and to kick up an exuberantly noisy racket in the process. X-Ray Spex certainly came from this wing of the movement, the brainchild of two female schoolmates who re-christened themselves Poly Styrene and Lora Logic. X-Ray Spex was far from the only female-centered British punk act, but they were arguably the best, combining exuberant energy with a cohesive worldview courtesy of singer and songwriter Poly Styrene. As her nom de punk hinted, Styrene was obsessed with the artificiality she saw permeating Britain's consumer society, linking synthetic goods with a sort of processed, manufactured humanity. Styrene's frantic claustrophobia permeates the record, as she rails in her distinctively quavering yowl against the alienation she feels preventing her from discovering her true self. Germ Free Adolescents is tied together by Styrene's yearning to be free not only from demands for consumption, but from the insecurity corporate advertisers used to exploit their targets (especially in women) -- in other words, to enjoy being real, imperfect, non-sterile humans living in a real, imperfect, non-Day-Glo world. Fortunately, the record is just as effective musically as it is conceptually. It's full of kick-out-the-jams rockers, with a few up-tempo thrashers and surprisingly atmospheric pieces mixed in; the raw, wailing saxophone of Rudi Thomson (who replaced Lora Logic early on) gives the band its true sonic signature. The CD reissue of Germ Free Adolescents appends both sides of the classic debut single "Oh Bondage Up Yours!," one of the most visceral moments in all of British punk -- which means everything you need is right here. Sadly, Polysterene died of breastcancer 25 April 2011 at the age of 53.
X-Ray Spex - Germ Free Adolescents ( flac 481mb)
01 Art-I-Ficial 3:21
02 Obsessed With You 2:26
03 Warrior In Woolworths 3:04
94 Let's Submerge 3:23
05 I Can't Do Anything 2:55
06 Identity 2:22
07 Genetic Engineering 2:45
08 I Live Off You 2:06
09 I Am A Poseur 2:29
10 Germ Free Adolescents 3:09
11 Plastic Bag 4:56
12 The Day The World Turned Dayglo 2:51
13 Oh Bondage! Up Yours! 2:50
14 I Am A Cliche' 1:54
15 Highly Inflamable 2:33
16 Age 2:39
Peel Session 6th March 1978
17 Genetic Engineering 2:56
18 Art-I-Ficial 3:29
19 I Am A Poseur 2:33
20 Identity 2:34
Peel Session 13th Nov 1978
21 Germ Free Adolescents 3:19
22 Warrior In Woolworth 3:05
23 Age 2:39
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Bow Wow Wow were a quartet organized by U.K. manager Malcolm McLaren (best known as the mastermind behind the Sex Pistols) at the start of the '80s. McLaren matched the trio of musicians who had constituted Adam Ant's Ants -- Matthew Ashman on guitar, Leigh Gorman on bass, and David Barbarossa on drums -- with teenage singer Annabella Lwin (b. Oct. 31, 1965), retaining the earlier group's African-derived drum sound.
The focus was on style and the music was a mix of dance and new wave, always with a heavy nod toward percussion. The results are mixed and you sometimes have the feeling that you are hearing Burundi beats omnipresence. However, it's difficult not to find yourself drumming your fingers to the frantic beats. Lwin makes sure that you never forget that she's only 15, either through her vocal delivery or her outright declarations (as on "Chihuahua"). The band also serves up an interesting spaghetti Western instrumental on "Orang-outang" and everything falls into place on "Go Wild in the Country," with Lwin's uninhibited shrieks touting the merits of getting away from it all.
In 1983, Lwin quit the group for a solo career, and the remaining three changed their name to the Chiefs of Relief. Both Lwin and the Chiefs issued their own albums. In 1995, Ashman passed away due to diabetes. Headed by Lwin and Gorman, a re-formed Bow Wow Wow resurfaced in 1998 with Wild in the U.S.A., which featured both remixes and concert performances from the reunion tour.
Bow Wow Wow - See Jungle! See Jungle! Go Join The Gang (283mb)
01 Jungle Boy 2:44
02 Chihuahua 4:13
03 Prince Of Darkness (Sinner! Sinner! Sinner!)(Inst.) 2:22
04 Mickey Put It Down 3:02
05 (I'm A) TV Savage 2:35
06 Elimination Dancing 3:03
07 Golly! Golly! Go Buddy! 2:35
08 King Kong 2:16
09 Go Wild In The Country 2:41
10 I Am Not A Know It All 2:53
11 Why Are Babies So Wise? 2:53
12 Orang-outang 2:43
13 Hello, Hello Daddy (I'll Sacrifice You) 4:29
14 El Boss Dicho (12'' version) 2:13
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Evolving out of Bristol's the Pop Group, Rip Rig And Panic was formed in 1981 as a conceptual musicians' collective, taking its name from an album by Rahsaan Roland Kirk. The group's prime movers were multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Gareth Sager, jazz trumpeter Don Cherry's step-daughter Neneh Cherry , her partner and drummer Bruce Smith, Sean Oliver ( bass) and Mark Springer (piano). They eschewed pop for a more primal, percussive foundation (slightly reggae, slightly Afro-pop), upon which was layered free jazz blowing and honking, soulful singing, and Cecil Taylor-inspired piano mania. But, as intense as this music was, it wasn't done with a dry academic seriousness; quite the contrary, Rip, Rig & Panic were all about fun and playfulness.
Powerful and disturbing live, their playful, anarchic jazz-funk was well captured on the irreverent 1981 debut album God, which appeared as two 45 rpm discs, but was too radical for daytime airplay or significant sales. They performed at the first WOMAD festival in 1982 shortly before Cherry returned to Sweden to have her first baby. Sean Oliver's sister Andrea temporarily took over vocals, and Louis Moholo joined on drums. The equally experimental second album, I Am Cold, appeared in 1982, followed by the more accessible Attitude in 1983. Unwilling to compromise further, but feeling the strain of constant innovation, they split in 1985. Cherry went on to a successful solo career, with Andrea Oliver contributing to some of her songs. Sean Oliver, who went on to co-write Terence Trent D'Arby's Wishing Well, died of sickle-cell anaemia in 1990. Sager formed Head, while Springer released a solo album before going on to work on film and television soundtracks. He returned to solo recording with 1998's Eye.
With Gareth Sanger leading the charge, Rip, Rig & Panic's debut is much more user-friendly than anything recorded by Sanger's previous band, the always abrasive Pop Group. This record gallops along from start to finish, honking and buzzing along the way, with loads of odd vocalizing and feral, primal, repetitive rhythms. Not the most significant album to come out of the early days of English post-punk, but one that still delivers plenty of smiles 15 years later.
Rip Rig and Panic - God ( flac 338mb)
01 Constant Drudgery Is Harmful To Soul, Spirit & Health 3:24
02 Wilhelm Show Me The Diagram (Function Of The Orgasm) 1:10
03 Through Nomad Eyeballs 3:27
04 Change Your Life 3:01
05 Knee Deep In Shit 3:29
06 Totally Naked (Without Lock Or Key) 1:53
07 Try Box Out Of This Box 2:33
08 Need (De School You) 1:32
09 Howl! Caged Bird 3:30
10 Those Eskimo Women Speak Frankly 3:13
11 The Blue Blue Third 5:25
12 Shadows Only There Because Of The Sun 2:39
13 Beware (Our Leaders Love The Smell Of Napalm) 1:51
14 Miss Pib 1:34
15 It Don't Mean A Thing If It Ain't Got That Brrod 2:54
16 Bob Hope Takes Big Risks (7" Version) 3:53
17 Go, Go, Go! (This Is It) 2:18
18 The Ultimate In Fun (Is Going To The Disco With My Baby) 2:31
19 Hey Mr E! A Gran Grin With A Shake Of Smile 5:11
20 Billy Eckstein's Shirt Collar 3:21
21 Bob Hope Takes Big Risks (12" Version) 7:01
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