I’ve always held the suspicion that our sound was subservient to the image we were trying to convey.
Most bands with a message for the world – and believe me, that’s pretty much every last one, even if the wisdom only stretches as far as the size of the lead guitarist’s cock – will at least attempt to express themselves within a sonic framework; the punchy hooks, a lyrical fleet-footedness.
With us however, our manifesto was encoded in how we dressed, or how we styled our hair, or the deliberately provocative stance taken in the press interviews. There was never any significant sleep lost about what we sounded like. As long as we were loud, and dissonant, and attention-grabbing, and made young children cry, then the musical side of things could be trusted to free-wheel, enabling us to focus upon more pressing issues.
The name was one. In the early days we spent entire evenings sitting around trying to hit upon a moniker that exactly suited our purpose, aiming to expose the wit and alacrity we’d drunkenly assumed to be at the heart of our endeavours. Something clever, amusing, and wry. But also obtuse in how it challenged perception; designed to trigger offence in anyone we considered complacent.
Cue a cavalcade of random word association, each possibility briefly considered, then hurriedly disposed of. Johnny Drumsticks wanted us to be called The Silly Little Bitches, until bass-player Mandy pointed out she was neither silly nor little, even if the misogyny lobby would no-doubt be happy to label her a bitch.
‘How about Venue Closed For Private Party’ I offered. ‘It will look great on the gig posters’.
‘What about some religious connotation? Those always antagonise the righteous. Protesters outside the venue – that would be fun’.
‘The Jehovah Witness Incendiary Society?’.
‘Too similar to ‘The Village Green Preservation Society’’.
‘The Jehovah Witness Chemistry Club?’.
‘Too Black Rebel Motorcycle Club’.
‘The Blind Jehovah’s Witness Boys of Alabama…?’
And so on and so forth. Somebody even came up with the Moron Tabernacle Choir, until it was pointed out that this was what Nick Cave’s All-Star backing singers were credited as on his Murder Ballads album, and that an exceedingly dull name was far preferable to something devoid of originality. Of course these days, this “older” and “wiser” (huh!) me understands that precious little the band ever accomplished – either by design or serendipity – qualified as new, original, or even particularly insightful. But back then the future was a hazy concept none of us cared for, too smug were we when finding our début single – an unlistenable helix of feedback that pretended to be a cover of an old Gina G track – in the record racks at Rough Trade.
In fact, ‘Oh Ah Just A Little Bit’ by Generic Offensive Band Name even managed to shift a few copies.
When it comes to (music) blogging, I’ve never been a fan of the hiatus. If you’re going to set yourself up as an online presence, then expect that presence to foster repeated visits, it doesn’t really work as a serious proposition should the publication schedule start spluttering away like the engine of a scrapheap auto. Either blog, or don’t – that’s my motto, because it’s kinda disingenuous to perch in-between.
So yes, I’ve been circumventing my own rules of late, the LGM momentum crashing to the floor without warning. Or in other words: my head has been turned by another project. One that’s more words than music, and will only see the light of day – if it ever does see the light of day – when 2013 is but a distant memory. Ho-hum.
But that doesn’t mean the blog is scheduled to fizzle away. How about I up the posting frequency if you guys continue to visit? Would that work?