Tuesday, 5 August 2014

7 Inch Singles Collection: Spear Of Destiny - Radio Radio

Rocking with the Goths...


A-side: Radio Radio
B-Side: Life Goes On
(Epic 1988)

Spear of Destiny had a little flirt with controversy. The name has some Nazi symbolism attached to it. This was enough to ruffle a few feathers, and work as space filling copy for some lazy journalists. Joy Division and New Order had the same problem (although considering they're essentially the same band it suggests that it was done deliberately; all publicity is good publicity!). However even a cursory listen to their lyrics or reading interviews with the band, it's obvious that there are no far-right connections - usually quite the opposite.

Kirk Brandon, who is essentially Spear Of Destiny, was formerly with post-punk rockers Theatre Of Hate. As far as I understand he tours as both bands these days pretty much interchangeably. Spear of Destiny started out gothier but drifted towards rock, just as Theatre of Hate started out punkier, but drifted towards rock.

The eagle-eyed amongst you will have noticed that this copy is a limited edition - the special thing that makes this limited is the exciting fact this has a gatefold sleeve. However there is nothing of interest on the middle of the gatefold, otherwise I'd have scanned it in to fill up some space!

Radio Radio is a proper rock song - no other way to describe it. It's got crunchy guitars, a shout of "Radio Radio" which punctuates the verses, and a rocking epic chorus. It's all delivered in a tone that's quite aggressive, macho even, but ultimately it's inoffensive. It rocks out, but is largely unmemorable. You can see what they're trying to do - songs with the word Radio in them are like catnip to DJs they can hardly help themselves when coming to play these songs on the radio. Didn't work this time...

On the other side, Life Goes On, starts on in much the same way, with a strong rocking beginning. What adds to the interest here is that the drums are much more to the forefront of the mix. This adds a flavour to the song that I can only describe as tribal, and ends up opening the song up. It feels much more expansive than Radio Radio, also Kirk Brandon's voice is much more expressive, this makes the listener feel much more invested in the experience. In the end it reminds of me of The Cult on a good day.

All in all it's not a bad record, with the b-side probably edging out slightly as the better song, but not a great record that I'd want to rave about, but you'll have to take my word for it as there isn't anything on YouTube to link to. I'm sure you can find it on Spotify or similar if you're desperate.

Next time white blokes playing around with reggae...

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