Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Generation X ... Sweet Revenge & Show # 351

Generation X were a British Punk band that featured Billy Idol (vocals), Tony James (bass), Bob “Derwood” Andrews (guitar) and Mark Laff on drums. After releasing two albums of the Punk Rock variety Generation X in 1977 and the Ian Hunter produced Valley of the Dolls in 1979, which showed the band expanding their sound into a more heavy Rock style, disagreements arose amongst the band members. Some wanted to continue moving into heavy Rock territory while some wanted to stay true to their Punk roots. It should also be noted that Generation X were never one to follow the trends of the 70s Punk hayday, while they adopted the attitude and asthetics that were apparent then, they took inspiration from 60s British Pop bands and were the first UK Punk band to appear on the UK TV show Top of the Pops. By 1981, all the members of Generation X had left the group except for Billy Idol and Tony James. The band added additional members to record the album Kiss Me Deadly under the abbreviated band name Gen X. The band added drummer Terry Chimes (previously drummer in The Clash) and James Stevenson on guitar of the band Chelsea. The album Kiss Me Deadly would also feature several guest guitarists from the Punk community such as Steve Jones (Sex Pistols), John McGeoch (Magazine/Public Image Limited) and Steve New of The Rich Kids. The album is known for containing the song “Dancing With Myself”, which would later be used by Billy Idol when he became a solo artist, helping to launch his career. What most people may not know is that several of the songs on the album Kiss Me Deadly were recorded just before the original members Bob Andrews and Mark Laff left the group, including “Dancing With Myself”.

In 1979 with the original line up, Generation X recorded their third album which would not be released until 1998. The album would be titled Sweet Revenge. Some of the notable differences on Sweet Revenge are the early versions of songs such as “Triumph”, “The Stars Looked Down” and “Dancing With Myself” which as a whole is similar to the version found on Kiss Me Deadly, but there is less guitar and the ending is different. The songs also feature less of the production based sound that encompasses all of Kiss Me Deadly. Sweet Revenge has more of a raw Punk New Wave edged production style. Songs such as “Anna Smiles”, “Flash As Hell” and “Psycho Beat” are some of the offerings that were never re-recorded for the Kiss Me Deadly album, but remain essential in the Generation X catalogue. Overall, the album has a chemistry that is apparent between the band members, it has a unique energy that Kiss Me Deadly seems to be missing. When released in 1998, the album was titled K.M.D – Sweet Revenge and issued on the German label Empty Records. In 2003, Generation X released a three CD anthology. One of the discs was the Sweet Revenge album with bonus tracks and an interview with bassist Tony James, making it the first time Sweet Revenge was released officially. In 2004, K.M.D – Sweet Revenge Extra was released on a Japanese label expanding the 1998 version of the album.

This Week's Play List:

1. The Ride Theory - Parking Ticket
2. Munks - Long Time Waitin'
3. Painted Ship - And She Said Yes
4. Thee Mighty Caesars - You'll Be Sorry Now
5. The Great Scots - I Ain't No Miracle Worker (version 2) 
6. Phoenix Foundaion - Buffalo
7. Kurt Vile - Puppet To The Man
8. Beastie Boys - OK
9. Jolly Boys - Emmanuel Road
10. The Aggrolites - In The Cut
11. Rabble Rabble - Why Not
12. Sloan - Traces
13. 13th Floor Elevators - You Don't Know (Live)
16. Pointed Sticks - Found Another Boy
17. Statues - Signals 
18. Tranzmitors - Look What You're Doing
19. Tranzmitors - Glamour Girls
20. Generation X - Girls
21. Generation X - Dancing With Myself (Sweet Revenge Version)
22. Wire - Mannequin 
23. Dirty Pretty Things - The Weekenders
24. Bob Dylan & The Hawks - Tell Me Mama (Live Royal Albert Hall 1966)

To download this weeks program, visit CJAM's schedule page for Revolution Rock and download the file for May 10. Or subscribe to Revolution Rock as a Podcast.


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