Thursday, September 29, 2011

ThURGHsday! #2 - Wall of Voodoo

URGH! was released in 1982, the same year that Wall of Voodoo's Call of the West came out - the record that contained the MTV hit "Mexican Radio". It's doubtful that URGH! provided any sort of popularity bump to Wall of Voodoo in the time leading up to that single's release, but the video in URGH! is a great showing of the band's stage presence, specifically singer Stan Ridgway. Always kind of an odd duck, he puffy-cheek sings, wanders around the stage, and lays down a supporting keyboard riff. More angular than their previously mentioned hit song, "Back In Flesh" is textbook early-80's postpunk New Wave music, mixing keyboards, guitars & drum machines. Also check out the classic non-sequitur interstitial before the concert footage:

Back in Flesh


My favorite part: The "you can't tell me what to do...screw you!" end to the back & forth breakdown two-thirds of the way into the song.

Where URGH! They Now?

If you lived in a city with an alternative radio station in the mid 80's, you probably remember Stan Ridgway's "Camouflage", a Twilight Zone episode in a song. If you were a huge music geek & Police fan like me, you remember his collaboration with Stewart Copeland - "Don't Box Me In" - for the movie Rumble Fish. I don't think I ever saw the movie, but I love the song. Stan is still creating and performing, although not as Wall of Voodoo, but he has done a reunion concert (without any original band members).

Speaking of original band members, guitarist Marc Moreland was the inspiration for Concrete Blonde's "Joey", a song about being in love with an alcoholic. Unfortunately, Marc died in 2002.

And more Wall of Voodoo/Concrete Blonde trivia: After Stan left WoV, he was replaced by Andy Prieboy, who later wrote of one of Concrete Blonde's loved songs, "Tomorrow, Wendy".
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Last ThURGHsday! - The Police, "Driven To Tears"
Next ThURGHsday! - Toyah Willcox, "Dance"

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