Ad-Hoc Posting Schedule

Willkommen Leser, Down-Loader, Lurker und Teilnehmer alle.

It might have come to your notice that I'm not a regular poster of love and understanding, which you'll just kinda have to get used to. I will however, now and again, have bursts of creativity and if it was to please the massed hordes, who chose to visit this insignificant page, to supply some input on the direction and type of music you would like to sample (before going out and buying yourself a copy) this little communication will not have been in vain.

I will also say now that some of the outstanding music already available to sample will be reaching their 30 days without a click threshold, where by they're deleted by the host.


Many thanks for reading this far...and please feel free to interact.



slàinte


Sunday

Wax And Wane




Those hearing Garlands for the first time who only know the bands other material will likely be more than a little surprised. Whereas the typical vision of the Twins is of beautiful washes of sounds and exultant vocals from Fraser, on Garlands the original trio is still only part of the way there. Instead, the best comparison points are to Siouxsie And The Banshees, the Cure on Faith and Pornography, perhaps Metal Box-era PiL, a touch of Joy Division here and there; in sum, deep, heavy mood verging on doom and gloom. Bassist Will Heggie, in the only full album he did with the Twins, clearly follows the Peter Hook/Simon Gallup style of low, ominous throb, while Guthrie's guitar work more often than not screeches loudly than shimmers. Fraser's singing has a starker edge, unsettling even at its most accessible, sometimes completely disturbing at other times. The strongest track, "Wax and Wane," has the trio creating a powerful but also surprisingly danceable track, the crisp drum machine beat working against Guthrie's compelling atmospherics and Fraser's vocal hook in the chorus.




The thing about the Cocteau Twins that interests me the most is how much their sound changed in a manner of only two years. "Treasure" was released 1984, often considered their magnum opus along with "Heaven or Las Vegas". The sound of "Garlands" differs almost completely from that of "Treasure". Garlands is much more subdued, darker and mid-tempo than Treasure yet it is by far inferior to Treasure. The sound of Garlands also is post-punk and new-wave(ish) while Treasure is their first true album in which they mastered the dream pop sound that the band is so well-known for. Garlands is not a bad album by no means, it is just different.

Garlands really is a post-punk album, noticed right off the bat on the song "Blood Bitch". The sound is subdued and trippy, pretty much the overall sound of the album is like this. However, what can be noticed right away is the influences. While it is unfair to say Cocteau Twins ripped off the sound of Siouxsie And The Banshees and The Cure, it is so similar to the sound of both of these bands. The thing is Post-Punk is not a genre known for variation. A lot of bands sound similar to each other, the big four of Proto-Goth (Bauhaus, The Cure, The Banshees, and Joy Division) all sound rather similar on their first albums. "Blood Bitch" is more of like a subdued down-tempo version of Kaleidoscope era Siouxsie mixed with a hint of The Cure Faith era, sprinkle in some Bauhaus and you have the main influences of "Blood Bitch". "Blood Bitch" is what the album mostly sounds like, the distorted guitars, the drum machine, the Siouxsie influenced Elizabeth Fraser singing in tongues is the only thing that differs this band from the average post-punk band.

“Wax and Wane” is the most well-known song off of this album. The song is more up-tempo compared to that of Blood Bitch or even the rest of the album. The lotus-like sound of the catchy guitar line in the song, the catchy chorus in the song, everything is catchy about this song. The most poppy song off of this post-punk album is Wax and Wane compared to the hit or miss of the second side of Garlands. If anything, Wax and Wane is the reason to buy this album.

Friday

Perfectly Hummable Choruses



Armed with trumpeters Ray Martinez and Hurricane Smith who add soaring flourishes and energetic blasts throughout Kilimanjaro, the Teardrops explode in a torrent of creative, kicky and often downright fun songs that hotwire garage/psych inspirations into something more. Julian Cope is already a commanding singer and front man; his clever lyrics and strong projection result in a series of confident performances, whether he is trading lines with himself on the motorbike chug of "Sleeping Gas" or his yelps on "Books." For all the bad energy between himself and David Balfe, the two sound like they're grafted at the hip throughout; the latter's keyboard washes and staccato melodies adding the fun, nervy vibe. Gary Dwyer's spot-on drumming keeps the pace, while both guitarists, Mick Finkler and his replacement Alan Gill, don't drown the band in feedback to the exclusion of everything else. One listen to many of Gill's pieces, on songs like "Poppies," and Cope's oft-stated claim that early U2 was trying to rip off the Teardrops and other Liverpool/Manchester groups makes sense. Though it was assembled from a variety of different sessions Kilimanjaro still sounds cohesive. Perfectly hummable choruses, great arrangements and production and Cope's smiling vibe all add up with fantastic results. 




The 30th anniversary reissue of the Teardrop Explodes' Kilimanjaro recently spurred one heritage-rock magazine to ask the band's former front man Julian Cope if he would ever return to writing pop music. It seems a fair enough query given Kilimanjaro's success: it spawned a top 10 hit in Reward, spent 35 weeks on the charts and displayed such commercial promise that both U2 and Duran Duran apparently considered the Teardrop Explodes their only real competition. Cope told the magazine, he'd just written a pop song, inspired by the mid-60s baroque style of the Left Banke, a band not so wildly removed from the kind of influences that powered Kilimanjaro – the blasting brass arrangements of Forever Changes-era Love, the Seeds' reedy garage rock, the sunshine pop of the Turtles. "It's called," he added, "The Cunts Can Fuck Off."

It's hard to reconcile the Julian Cope of today with the 22-year-old you hear on this 3CD deluxe reissue of the first album he made. There's something very  fresh-faced about the music on Kilimanjaro, which replaced the murky, shaky, spindly sound of the Teardrops' early indie singles – collected on CD2 – with a sound that tapped into 60s psych's sunny optimism, rather than its creeping disquiet. Equally, though, there's something rather gimlet-eyed about it. Indeed, the Teardrop Explodes had a weird tendency to combine the wide eyes and the will to power in the same song. "Bless my cotton socks, I'm in the news!" opened Reward, while the faux-naif title and jaunty tune of Brave Boys Keep Their Promises cloaks a load of surprisingly Duncan Bannatyneish stuff about fighting your way to the top.

Five of Kilimanjaro’s 11 songs were released as singles in one form or another, and listening to Treason or Bouncing Babies, you can see why Duran Duran got the fear. The tunes are uniformly fantastic (fantastic enough to overwhelm the production, even when it tends to early-80s chart-bothering smoothness), the words intriguing: long before he actually did create his own unique universe of megaliths, Odinism and krautrock, Cope was cramming his lyrics with enough off-kilter references to suggest he already had. And the sense of swaggering confidence never abates. It sounds like that most beguiling of things: a band at the top of their game. It sounds like a band that could have had it all. As it turned out, that was the last thing their front man wanted.

Tuesday

A Swirl Of Psychedelic Rock



On their debut, Of Skins and Heart, The Church play straightforward pop/rock firmly rooted in new wave, though owing no small debt to '60s pop. Edgier and more direct than their later work, it also ranks among their finest for that very reason. None of the excesses and ambitions that would sometimes get out of hand on later releases are present, though much of the band's basic formula was laid down -- Steve Kilbey's cool, detached vocals and slightly surrealistic lyrics combined with some outstanding pop hooks, nice harmonies, and layers of ringing guitar. The classic "Unguarded Moment" (arguably one of the greatest singles of the '80s) overshadows much of the material on the album, but there is really no shortage of great songs here.

While the group never truly gained the popular acclaim many thought was due, The Church have still managed to carve out a consistently interesting career for themselves, moving from underground sensation to (briefly) popular mainstream act to legendary veterans, all while never resting on their laurels. A reassessment of the Australian quartet’s early LP’s is especially useful considering how well it displays the band finding their way toward their signature sound, a swirl of psychedelic rock that contains familiar elements but that sounds like no one but The Church.

Fans who entered The Church following the international success of their fifth album Starfish and its career-defining hit single “Under the Milky Way” might be surprised by the forthright sound of the band’s debut album Of Skins and Heart. The gauzy psychedelia for which the group would become known appears only in hints and glimmers here. Instead the band (bassist/ singer/ songwriter Steve Kilbey, guitarists Peter Koppes and Marty Willson-Piper, and drummer Nick Ward) boasts a rocking sound that’s more in line with the rising tide of 80’s new wave. It sounds like a young band with talent to burn, eager to get its ideas down on vinyl as quickly and energetically as possible.

The snarling post-punk “Fighter Pilot…Korean War,” the straightforward ballad “Don’t Open the Door to Strangers” and the bombastic “Memories in Future Tense” sound very different from the band with which most people would become familiar – the guitars are much more muscular and less pretty. Steve Kilbey had not yet found his style as a vocalist, pushing his natural croon into an urgent yelp influenced by his 70s glam rock heroes. It mostly fits but he occasionally sounds like he’s straining beyond his comfort zone. Sprightly pop rockers like “She Never Said,” “For a Moment We’re Strangers,” “Chrome Injury” (which is marred by a dated electronic percussion thwack) and the Australian hit “The Unguarded Moment” show some of the group’s hallmarks – the uncommon chemistry between Koppes and Willson-Piper’s axes, Kilbey’s enigmatic lyrics – but also have a stripped down, propulsive power folks rarely associate with the band now. The leisurely epic “Is This Where You Live” and the jangling “Bel-Air” give hints of what was to come, but overall Of Skins and Heart sounds like the work of a different band than The Church we all know – though quite a good band, to be sure.

Sunday

Issued in the great year of 1981



TV21 - A Thin Red Line


TV21 were a superb group from Scotland who only were around long enough to issue this classic long player "A Thin Red Line" and a few singles before disappearing into smoke. The last thing I remember hearing about them was that were appearing as a support group to the Rolling Stones on their "Tattoo You" tour dates in Scotland. TV21 issued a single in early 1982 "All Join Hands" then simply disappeared. This left me very frustrated because I thought they were a group with immense promise. At the time of the release of "A Thin Red Line" TV21 were hot property in the UK music press, I remember them having a full colour cover feature in Melody Maker in 1981 and their album was greeted by glowing reviews. I went out and bought an import copy without ever having heard a note of their music. But as soon as I played it I was hooked and they became one of my favourite groups of that period.

"A Thin Red Line" was issued in the great year of 1981, this was the final good year in British rock before the dreaded New Romantic nonsense took hold and forced every UK band to stock up on hair gel and 12" dance re-mixes. During 1981 I seemed to buy a great album every week from the likes of The Undertones, The Barracudas, The Comsat Angels, Wah! Heat, Teardrop Explodes, The Passions, The Sound, Echo & The Bunnymen and others. In November of 1981 I made a cassette of "A Thin Red Line" backed with Teardrop Explodes "Wilder" album and played it so much that I think I memorized every note.
Enough Now! Back to why we’re here and the music of TV21. I was initially attracted to the group because they were described as a cross between The Jam and The Teardrop Explodes (two of my favourite groups at the time), and looking back I would say that is a pretty accurate comparison. But in reality the group clearly had a sound of their own which was more than clearly demonstrated on this flawless debut album. The opening number "Waiting For The Drop" hits you immediately with its Joy Division-ish bass line and Teardrop Explodes style horn section, this would have made a perfect single (but oddly it was never issued as such.) While I do think the Teardrop Explodes comparison is just, TV21 had a much more aggressive sound, highlighted by lead singer Norman Rodger's gruff vocals. The group reminded me a great deal of The Skids during their "Absolute Game" period.

"Ideal Way Of Life" goes the Paul Weller route in describing UK yuppie life circa 1981, this track is quite involved and goes through several musical changes, highlighted by the aggressive horn section that brings to mind the "Prehistoric Sounds" & "Eternally Yours" albums by The Saints and also The Saints offshoot group The Laughing Clowns. "This Is Zero" is a menacing dose of modern psychedelia with a surging bass line, ringing guitar phrases and a gut-busting lead vocal by Norman Rodger, this number occupies the same territory as Wah! Heat's brilliant debut album "Nah=Poo-The Art Of Bluff." Side one closes with two reflective and moving ballads in "Ticking Away" & "It Feels Like It's Starting To Rain" both of these pieces remind me of another underrated UK group of that time period The Sound.

Side two opens with "Snakes & Ladders" which is probably the album's most commercial track (it was in fact a double single with 3 bonus tracks.) "Snakes" has an odd beat that reminds me a little of XTC, it also has a neat childlike chorus that is punctuated by rapid-fire trumpet blasts, this song had "hit" written all over it. "What's Going On" has a somewhat experimental feel that combines the psychedelic throb of "154" era Wire with the sound of The Jam circa 1980. "When I Scream" is a slow brooding piece that fuses a throbbing bass pattern and ringing guitar to a first class vocal by Norman Rodger.

"Something's Wrong" was the choice for the album's second single, this one is the direct opposite of "Snakes & Ladders" at least musically in that it goes directly in the territory of Joy Division with its moody, atmospheric sound highlighted by its ringing guitar line, propulsive bass and insistent percussion. "Tomorrow" brings with it the storming brass sound the group employed on "Ideal Way Of Life", this is the most Teardrop Explodes-like track on the record, bringing to mind "Books" from the Teardrops "Kilimanjaro" album. The record closes out with "Attention Span" which is a very interesting piece, it begins with a riff that sounds like a direct lift from Wire's "Our Swimmer"  along that way it features scratchy guitar chords and free-jazz trumpet phrases ala The Laughing Clowns, it's a somewhat subdued closer but it works very effectively. This is a very well put together record with a rich harvest of quality and varied material. It's easily one of the greatest debut albums I have ever heard. What happened to dissolve this promising group I do not know, but there appears to be good news on the horizon in that TV21 appear to be back in action after all these years with some excellent new material. The time is perfect for TV21 to finally get the attention they have long deserved.

Monday

'Every night I thought I'd be killed'



Even punks hated Suicide, reacting to their gigs with astonishing violence. In response, the band locked the exits so no one could flee. Jon Wilde asks them how they survived it all.

 


Be it headlining Glastonbury or supporting Led Zeppelin at Knebworth, most bands that have been around for close to 40 years have one unforgettable, career-defining gig. Suicide are no exception.
"That would be the show in Glasgow in 1978 when someone threw an axe at my head," says Alan Vega with admirable matter-of-factness. "We were supporting the Clash and I guess we were too punk even for the punk crowd. They hated us. I taunted them with, 'You fuckers have to live through us to get to the main band.' That's when the axe came towards my head, missing me by a whisker. It was surreal, man. I felt like I was in a 3-D John Wayne movie. But that was nothing unusual. Every Suicide show felt like world war three in those days. Every night I thought I was going to get killed. The longer it went on, the more I'd be thinking, 'Odds are it's going to be tonight.'"
Vega, now 59, is sitting with his long-time Suicide cohort Martin Rev (age undisclosed) in the reception area of an east London branch of the Holiday Inn. Vega looks wonderfully sinister in his shades and street-fighter beret. Rev, in a distressed leather jacket and visor sunglasses, looks as if he has stepped off the set of Mad Max 2. It's fair to say that they don't blend in with the blue-rinsed sightseers and Swedish language students who mingle in the foyer.
Then again, Suicide never did blend in with anything or anybody. While this helped them become one of the most reviled bands of all time, it didn't stop them becoming one of the most influential. It's Kraftwerk who get the kudos for furthering the cause of electronic music, inspiring a generation of pop and rock bands to use synthesisers. But Suicide surely merit at least equal billing. Not only were they the blueprint for every synth-and-voice duo of the 1980s, they were equally influential on the industrial music and, quite possibly, techno scenes that followed. In a tribute album to mark Vega's 60th birthday this month, the contributors' list includes Primal Scream, Peaches, Grinderman, the Horrors, the Klaxons, Julian Cope, Vincent Gallo and even long-time Suicide fan Bruce Springsteen, who donates a live version of Dream Baby Dream.
The Brooklyn-born Alan Bermowitz (Vega) and Bronx-born Martin Reverby (Rev) first met up in 1971. Vega was engaged with sculptures and far-flung electronic experiments at the Project of Living Artists, a downtown workshop funded by the New York State Council On the Arts. Rev, already a veteran of avant-jazz ensembles, wandered into the workshop to escape the torrential rain. The two hit it off and began performing together at local galleries. Their second show was entitled Punk Music Mass, which is said to have been the first time a band used the word "punk" in an official context to describe their music. The name Suicide was inspired by Satan Suicide, an issue of Vega's favourite comic book, Ghost Rider.
When Vega and Rev started making music, they were both limited and liberated by their poverty. Often starving, living on a sandwich a day between them and unable to afford proper instruments, they made their music on the one instrument available to them: Rev's $10 Wurlitzer keyboard, over which Vega would improvise.
"For a long time, we didn't have songs as such," Vega says. "So Marty would repeatedly kick his keyboard and I'd hit the microphone stand with a broken bottle or make these horrible noises come out of a trumpet. Then I graduated to screaming, and eventually that led to writing actual lyrics."
Unsurprisingly, there were few takers for Suicide's music. "People were looking to be entertained," says Vega. "But I hated the idea of going to a concert in search of fun. Our attitude was, 'Fuck you buddy, you're getting the street right back in your face. And some.' At one of our first shows, there was a guy in the audience who'd brought this trombone. I jumped into the audience, fell over and knocked the slide out of his trombone. These South Americans took real offence to that. So they immediately attacked us with chairs, tables, anything they could get their hands on. That became the norm. I started carrying a bicycle chain on stage, figuring, if you can't beat em, join em. If the violence got really bad, what I'd do was smash a bottle and start cutting my face up. That seemed to have a calming effect on the crowd. I guess they reasoned that I was so fucking nuts that nothing they could do would bother me. I figured out a way of doing it so that I drew a lot of blood but I wouldn't be scarred for life. I had it down to a fine art. Another ploy I had was to lock the exit doors so nobody could escape. That was the ultimate 'fuck you', as far as I was concerned."
Rev is nodding thoughtfully to all this. "I was convinced we were going to be as big as the Beatles," he chips in, without irony. "All the hostility we were getting did nothing to change that. Even when the violence was going on and the blood was spilling, I'd be thinking that the crowd knew we were doing something from the future. But it wasn't a future they wanted to know about. So the antagonism got stronger and stronger. The only reaction we didn't get was being attacked by wolves. But that's only because you weren't allowed to take wolves into clubs."
By 1975, Rev had acquired a 1950s drum machine, which expanded their musical possibilities exponentially. Vega had got hold of a two-track tape recorder, which enabled Suicide to make their first demos. Meanwhile, the New York music scene was being transformed by a wave of new bands (the Ramones, Television, the Patti Smith Group, Blondie, Talking Heads) performing regularly at CBGB. One by one, those bands were signed by major record labels, while Suicide continued to be conspicuously overlooked.
It wasn't until mid-1977 that Suicide finally secured a deal, with the small French label Red Star. Their eponymous debut was released the following year. Possibly the most paranoid-sounding album ever made, Suicide's seven tracks feature Vega's spluttering rockabilly vocal fighting it out against throbbing drum machines and Rev's dissonant keyboard. The album's centrepiece is the profoundly unsettling Frankie Teardrop, about a Vietnam vet who slaughters his family.
In the US, the album was greeted by howls of disgust from reviewers. European critics, however, adored it. Sensing they'd finally found an audience ready to embrace them, Vega and Rev flew to Britain to join the Clash on tour.
"We genuinely believed that we'd get a reception fit for returning war heroes," says Vega. "But it was like going from the frying-pan to the fire. The axe in Glasgow was just one of many weapons hurled at us. When we played in Metz, someone scored a direct hit on me with a monkey wrench. I've still got the scar on my head. Supporting Elvis Costello in Brussels, we provoked a full-scale riot and the venue was stormed by police letting off tear-gas canisters. Then something very strange happened. We headlined our own tour of Britain and ended up in Edinburgh. Two songs in and there was no riot, which was very, very unusual. Then we started to see people move around. I turned to Marty and said, 'Here we go - watch out for flying objects.' To my amazement, people started dancing. I turned back to Marty and said, 'We're finished, our career is over.'"
Live 1977-1978, a limited-edition, six-CD box set featuring 13 complete live Suicide sets, gives a taste of what those gigs were like. Not every live release comes with the stark warning, "These recordings are not for the fainthearted or casual fan". The Suicide gigs were recorded on cheap, handheld cassette recorders, and it's often difficult to distinguish the sound of the band from the background noise (smashing glass and bloodthirsty heckling). Stick the CDs into your computer and, faced with a choice of genre, iTunes unhesitatingly opts for "unclassifiable". Very astute, that.
After their uncomfortable introduction to Europe, Vega and Rev spent time in limbo. "Malcolm McLaren offered to manage us but he wanted to turn us into a disco outfit, so we politely declined," Rev says. Instead, they delivered a second album, also entitled Suicide, produced by Ric Ocasek of the Cars. A more polished affair, it sold in shockingly small numbers.
Vega and Rev went their separate ways. Astonishingly, for a brief period in the early 1980s Vega became a pop star in France, and won himself a deal with a major label that unsuccessfully attempted to market him as an alternative Bruce Springsteen. He has since continued to release solo albums, the latest being 2008's Station, and has supported himself by selling his sculptures, "mostly to rich Texans who don't realise there's usually a good old New York cockroach stuck on the bottom". Rev, meanwhile, has eked out an even more precarious living by releasing the occasional solo album, producing small-time bands, or playing sessions with obscure electronic outfits.
From time to time, Vega and Rev have reunited for a Suicide tour or album. You sense they miss the days when dodging axes and monkey wrenches was simply part of the job.
"I guess we're a historical act now," asks Vega. "We've turned into fucking entertainers. It was never meant to turn out that way. But what can you do? People are completely unshockable now. Even if you brought a fresh corpse out on stage and started eating it with a fork, no one would bat an eyelid. Still, one of the things about playing live these days is that at least we know we're not going to die on stage. That's kinda nice, man."

Sunday

Chasing Scars



Is the post-punk group Scars 

the Last Great Lost Band?

 


Chances are that you won't remember post-punk band Scars. Their moment in the sun was both tragically and gloriously brief. They stormed out of Edinburgh in the early 1980s possessed of equal parts glam audacity, art-rock solemnity and futuristic zeal. They were roundly hailed as the next great white musical hope. Two Peel sessions and a handful of music-paper covers later, they vanished in a fog of egotism and unhealthy appetites. But not before they delivered their one and only album, 1981's maddeningly beautiful Author! Author!
In the intervening years, Scars have been effectively forgotten. Years ago, Mark E Smith name-checked them as his favourite band ("because they were the complete opposite of the Fall"), and more recently, Lemon Jelly briefly raised Scars' profile by sampling them on their '64-'95 album. But despite guitarist Paul Research's sterling efforts to keep the name alive on his Scars website, the band appeared to be permanently consigned to the dustbin of history. Even in Simon Reynolds' encyclopaedic post-punk history, Rip it Up & Start Again, they merit only the most fleeting of mentions.
Meanwhile, down the last 25 years, every other once-forgotten band of their era has been either endlessly repackaged and/or critically rehabilitated to enable them to enjoy an extension on their fifteen minutes. Even the very worst of the fag-end punk bands (The Lurkers, Chelsea, Slaughter and the Dogs) have been kept on life-support by virtue of their appearance on a thousand and one dodgy service-station compilations. Music monthlies can be relied upon to remind us all of the greatness of cult artists (John Cooper-Clarke, Vic Godard, Penetration's Pauline Murray) who might have accidentally slipped off the radar. Most recently, Castle's CD86 compilation plucked the likes of Darling Buds, Revolving Paint Dream and 14 Iced Bears from the kind of shambling obscurity that most would agree was their deserved fate.
As for Scars, their fate has hardly been helped by the convoluted copyright situation that held up the reissue of Author! Author! for all these years. Now that it's finally here in 24bit audio and sounding as edgy and lovely as it always did, maybe the band can finally enjoy some of the critical acclaim that has long been denied them. If that should come to pass, then this will surely establish them as the Last Great Lost Band to come to our attention. Unless, that is, you readers have any better ideas. Word of warning: the likes of Bram Tchaikovsky, Toad the Wet Sprocket, Stump, Cock Sparrer and Bum Gravy will automatically be disqualified on the grounds that the dustbin of history is exactly where these bands belong.

Friday

Ronnie Recent





Scavengers and Marching Girls

Though now primarily known for his quiet introspective work with Dead Can Dance, Brendan Perry's first musical forays were in a markedly different style. In 1977, Perry was a leading member of New Zealand’s punk rock band The Scavengers, working under the pseudonym of Ronnie Recent. The band was formed in 1976 at Auckland Technical Institute by graphic design students Ken Cooke, Simon Monroe, Mike Simons and Marlon Hartas, under the name The 1B Darlings. They were heavily influenced by British R&B, glam rock and '60s US garage rock. In 1977, they renamed themselves The Scavengers and gave themselves punk stage names (Cooke as Johnny Volume, Monroe as Des Truction, Simons as Mike Lezbian and Hart as Mal Lcious). Their style mutated in the direction of the US punk rock and proto-punk acts. In late 1977, bassist Hart left to be replaced by Brendan Perry, who performed under the stage name "Ronnie Recent". In March 1978, they began a residency at Zwines, a new Auckland punk club. Simons soon left (inspiring their signature song "Mysterex"), and Perry moved to vocals.

In 1979, the band moved to Melbourne and changed its name to The Marching Girls. Perry was to leave the band in 1981 after the release of their début single “True Love”, to pursue a different direction with house mate Lisa Gerrard who was the vocalist with another Melbourne band Microfilm

The Scavengers are regarded as New Zealand's equivalent of Buzzcocks, with the Perry co-penned song "Mysterex" regarded as one of the country's best and most distinctive punk rock singles. The Marching Girls actually reached the New Zealand singles charts in 1981 with their single "True Love." Two Scavengers tracks appeared on the 1978 Ripper compilation AK79 and a posthumous album was released on CD in 2003. The 2014 Record Store Day red vinyl re-issue of The Scavengers album with additional Marching Girls tracks reached No7 on the New Zealand charts.