Sunday, June 19, 2005

cult of the week - Nervous Gender/ Beelzebub Youth

artist: Nervous Gender/ Beelzebub Youth

title: Music from Hell

year: 1981

label: Subterranean Records

personnel: erm, lots!

tracklisting: monsters, nothing to hide, cardinal newman, fat cow, alien point of view, people like you, regress for you, christian lovers, exorcism, bathroom sluts, pie on a ledge, push push push, alice’s $ong

cotw say…

hardly a regular ‘rock band’, Nervous Gender was a gay music collective that confronted Californian audiences throughout the early eighties. legends of the synthpunk genre, their ever rotating personnel (which included an eight year old drummer!) only ever managed half an album’s worth of studio recordings, split here with another West Coast synth outfit.

but what an album! faithfully irreverent, NG hurry through a set of classics, all characterized by shrill, percolating synth textures, cymbal-happy drums and angst-ridden vocals. highlights include the atonal buzz of ‘Fat Cow’, insidious riffs of ‘People Like You’ and the whirring ‘Regress for You’. the mysterious Beelzebub Youth should also not be underestimated. much moodier than their Californian cousins, the predominantly percussion-free second side drifts along, with analogue pulses punctuated by spurious electronic noises, deadpan chants, groans and screams.

trashy, perhaps. but oh so essential.

erik -

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