Friday, June 11, 2010

Affordable Firepower

As I wrote on my Cancerous Zeitgeist blog, Sigue Sigue Sputnik's music was used on ESPN HD commercial to promote the 2010 World Cup.  For me, this combined one of my favorite sports with a band I like that is thoroughly underrated and was, for its time, extremely original and often controversial.

Sigue Sigue Sputnik's output isn't even close to record breaking, but its Flaunt It is a classic.  This 1986 release was its first, and I obtained it on cassette (having to later pass up a vinyl version due to lack of money).  Look at its cover.  How the hell could it fail?  Couple that with songs that referenced voodoo, laser beams, guns and women, and you had a musical experience you could not get elsewhere.  This was no Bruce Springsteen.

Yes, Sigue Sigue Sputnik (which is named after a Russian youth gang and translates to Burn, Burn Satellite) was blatantly commercial (and even had ads between songs on the album), but that only added to its weird appeal. 

Today, the Sigue Sigue Sputnik style of music (heavy guitars and synth, and staccato beats) would barely raise an eyebrow.  That said, if you compare SSS to any other band like that, you can't help but hear that SSS comes across differently.  It has a different sense about it.  It's not the imagery (towering, multi-colored hair; fishnets; robots; machine guns; eye make-up).  It's not the strange lyrics ("Chinese speaking strip TVs").  It's not the song titles ("Orgasm").  It's not the ads ("ID magazine").  It's all those things combined.  It's almost like SSS exists in its own little world.  It makes music for the future ... if that future involved women in bikinis firing missiles at computer guided police helicopters.

I hope the guys were paid well for that commercial.  They sure as hell deserve it.

No comments:

Post a Comment