This is really cracking music and gives a solid, energetic, account of a special moment in our musical heritage. I enjoyed every track and never once found myself longing-for a change. An inspiration to upcoming youth, to keep their eternal inventiveness alive.
A unique voice. If the punk tag puts you off then ignore it and listen. This is a unique talent saying something about the world. The voice and the fine saxaphone work of Lora Logic (whose other work is also worth finding - see Essential Logic) are a wonderful antidote to the tedium of the current charts.
This CD is all the X-Ray Specs you need - buy one today.
One of the most least played and sadly almost forgotten bands from the era .Why I don't know .Polly gone but not forgotten ,wonderful music ,way ahead of their time loved em then love em now . Buy it and lose your self in the energy and the almost prophetic lyrics ( we are living in the world described in the lyrics now ).
Poly Styrene sings about tube stations, package plastic and anti-septic mouth-wash. S & M, rat infestations and suicide. Her backing group play loud raucous pop with dashes of blazing saxophone. It's a special combination.
Poly Styrene is a genuine one-off; a loner; a misfit. Her songs describe in brilliantly observed and acerbically realised fashion, what it's like to be the perpetual underdog, the dissolute, the eternal victim. Like so many others of her time.
The difference - Poly Styrene never once stoops to the level of ghastly icon's like Jimmy Pursey; dismally urging 'unity' and 'rebellion' (splutter!) among the 'working classes' and the exploited. She's got mounds more dignity and class. Her creative levels are higher than a hundred ultra-conservative Oi! groups and two hundred crypto-capitalist Crass's.
X-Ray Spex belong with the Pistols, the Clash and Siouxsie. I suppose you'd call that 'real punk' (a tiny canon), and musically they can live comfortably with any of their better known 1977 contemporaries. Sure she's angry, and we're certainly in the realm of the caveman (or should that be 'cavewoman'?) music that has pre-occupied your nerveless, heroic reviewer lately - but Poly Styrene is a tad more refined, just a touch more noble. You could say she's evolved into something more akin to the Stone-Age than the barbarous and uncouth 'rock-man' of pre-'new wave'.
She's tiny, sings hoarsely and nervously and is the worst dancer the world's ever seen, but she's got iron in her blood and acid in her spit. If I were to print you some Styrene words, you would think she's at least as good as Strummer or Lydon, and better than the rest. She's razor-sharp and lively.
Surprisingly, the live cuts on 'Anthology' (and that's NOT a Styrene title) are ok if over-abundant; and unsurprisingly, certain session versions of various tracks are better than the originals - but the real stuff, the quality items are the early singles, and 'Germ-Free Adolescents', X-Ray Spex violent debut album.
Slightly dangerous rock music (only slightly), with eye-opening lyrics sure to impress, and melodic twists and turns throughout the often loud, but never boorish fugues.
"I'm a cliché, I'm a cliché..." Poly Styrene claims at one stage, but she's fooling no-one. That's one accusation you could NEVER point at her.
Excellent CD. I'd quite forgotten how good X Ray Spex were.Personal faves are Identity, Germ Free Adolescents and Age, and I've even found that time has mellowed me towards the older songs like Highly Inflammable. One thing is for sure,you won't need to buy any other X Ray Spex material.Everything is on here, even the backing tracks on their own, if you fancy a little karaoke!