Saturday, 5 July 2014

Cleaners From Venus ‎– "Under Wartime Conditions (A Collection Of Pop Songs)" (Man At The Off Licence ‎– TAO/008) 1984

The covers are getting lazier, but the songs are getting better. "Under Wartime Conditions" pushes "Midnight Cleaners" as the Cleaners best tape. Side A starts off with the childhood nostalgia-fest of "Summer in a Small Town",and "Johnny the Moondog is Dead"; two absolute classic pop songs full of wistful melancholia. The rest of the tape doesn't reach these great heights, there ain't no fillers on here. This a great argument in favour of poverty as motivation for great art or craft;and Martin Newell and cohorts are definitely craftsmen from a dying breed of musician. "Song for Syd Barrett" betrays their roots as from that generation caught between the sixties and the new wave, too young for psychedelia,and too old for punk rock. Ironically, Punk Rock made it possible for "Piper" Pink Floyd to dump their "Dark Side of the Moon" records,and revisit the three minute experimental pop song. Even as J.Lydon wore his modified Pink Floyd T-Shirt down the Kings Road, Syd Barrett was always held in high regard by the more intelligent spikey tops. This lead to the inevitable underground revival of jangly psychedelic pop,of which The Cleaners from Venus were undoubtedly the first on the Trolley(note clever reference to the Cleaners first alter-ego, The Stray trolleys)borrowing  some much needed reality and social comment in the lyrics from their unkempt cousins in the bondage gear. The Wartime Conditions ,which the title refers to, is clearly a reference to life in recession hit Thatchers Britain; it weren't much fun being young outside of youth culture in 1984. A  bit like the modern era, with deliberately engineered economic collapse,creating debt and poverty to control the proletariat, and create potential vast profits for the elite when their stocks recover(after earlier selling them on the eve of the "Credit Crunch". These bastards should have their assets nationalised, without compensation; but that would need a free government to impose, rather than the puppet regime we have had for at least the last 200 Ed Miliband is not the answer,as Barack O'Bomber wasn't. Check out We Are and Occupy Wall While you listen to this very human,non corporate,optimistic sounding cassette. Die or DIY? Freedom isn't FREE, but life is. 


A1 Summer In A Small Town 
A2 Johnny The Moondog Is Dead 
A3 Hand Of Stone 
A4 Drowning Butterflies 
A5 Radio Seven 

B1 Fracas On West Street 
B2 Lukewarm Lovesong 
B3 A Blue Wave 
B4 A Song For Syd Barrett 
B5 The Winter Palace 

DOWNLOAD some wartime conditions HERE!

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