Thursday, 17 June 2010

Suicide Blonde and the Birmingham scene

Suicide Blonde popped into my head today - not the INXS song, but a Birmingham band from the late 80s/early 90s. As is clear from the cartoon drawing on their MySpace page, Suicide Blonde emerged on the (velvet) coat tails of the Dogs D'Amour and despite some good press only managed to release one 12" single ('Nobody Tells Me Anything', a tune we used to busk occasionally).

I got to see them once at the Borderline on Charing Cross Road on my birthday (to say which one would give far too much away!). Openers were the then perennial support act White Trash; I must have seen them about half-a-dozen times, all unintentionally. Their one redeeming feature was that they covered 'Another Girl, Another Planet', and on this particular evening were joined for their rendition by one Steve von Saint. Bless him, he looked most crestfallen when he went to play the opening solo but was beaten to it by White Trash's own guitarist, then trying to pull some shapes only to lean back too far and fall over! I dare say he claimed to have been drunk ...

Suicide Blonde's performance led to a Kerrang review that stated that 'the best band in London is actually from Birmingham'. And it's fair to say that England's second city (Mancunians will debate that one!) was arguably producing the better bands - along with Suicide Blonde there was Gunfire Dance, who never got close to the success they deserved, Dave Kusworth and Nikki Sudden (in both their solo guises, Kusworth's Bounty Hunters and together as the Jacobites).

I also stumbled across some great You Tube links from this era, including the band that spawned Suicide Blonde (Hollywood Refugees) and also the Subterranaen Hawks (an early Kusworth outfit along with Stephen 'Tin Tin' Duffy and performing 'Big Store', later re-recorded by the Jacobites on Robespierre's Velvet Basement). Each clip also has some notes on the bands - well worth checking out.

Previous posts:
Jacobites - Robespierre's Velvet Basement
Suddenly Dead - Nikki Sudden movie
Gunfire Dance
Interview with Ozzie from Gunfire Dance 

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