Thursday, July 30, 2015

W.O.C.K On Vinyl - Flying Lizards: Money (1979)

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Before things get too serious here at Rock On Vinyl, I thought it might be fun to post a song / album at the end of each month, that could be categorized as being either Weird, Obscure, Crazy or just plain Korny
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One of the most curious U.S. Top 50 hits of the very curious skinny-tie new wave era—a woman named Deborah Stickland recites, in a stark monotone, mercenary Berry Gordy lyrics that everybody from The Beatles to The Supremes to Waylon Jennings had sung since Mississippi soul man Barrett Strong first unveiled them (“the best things in life are free, but you can give them to the birds and bees, I want money”).

A
n Irish-born experimental composer named David Cunningham, schooled in Marxist theory and sound collage, offers cavernous dub echoes, swirling sounds, stereo-demonstration samples, and blurting horn farts while, supposedly, throwing rubber toys, phone books, Chopin sheet music, and ashtrays at a piano. 

The Flying Lizards do sound like they are trying to collide every sound they can make into their rhythmically uneven tracks, while still maintaining a stripped down sound. You get drums sounds more akin to banging on trashcan lids but even with the occasional burst of static-y radio noises, they never loose their tight control. It’s insanity, but the kind that feels like it operates within dystopian level limitations. 

Money was number 4 in the UK and number 3 in the USA as well as getting to number 1 in Australia in 1979. Strangely, Money has not been out of the public eye since, being regularly used in TV programmes about the Thatcher years and even a stint on the BBC's Money programme ... also their interesting documentary on the Monet exhibition. It has been used in a number of commercials, regularly played on the radio and used in three recent films, Empire Records, The Wedding Singer, and most recently Charlie's Angels. So in the USA the Flying Lizards seem to be something of a cult figure as are many of the Punk, Post-Punk and New Romantics of that time. At Occidental College in L.A., a young Barack Obama is said to have enjoyed blasting this record in his dorm [extract from mstation.org ]

So why did I choose to post this single for this month's WOCK on Vinyl?  Simple - its Bizarre, it's Crazy, it's Money, and that's what I want !  
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Flying Lizards Link (44Mb)  New Link 30/08/2015

1 comment:

  1. Nice one, mate - been a while since I've heard this one, a real blast from the past! Cheers, Dave Sez.

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