Sunday, 20 January 2013

Marching Girls - Plain Jane 12" RTC MG600, 1983

We've discussed before meta-topics like songs changing hands between bands. If you're fishing for thesis topics there's a need for a Carducci-like discursion on bands changing genre through their life, and the almost universal deleterious effect on quality. I mean, we wouldn't read it, but go ahead and write it. Here's our minimal datapoint contribution.

The Marching Girls were Kiwi transplants to Melbourne who recorded a pop-punk high water mark in 1980. Following a few years playing around they lost Brendan Perry, took on a new vocalist in Debra Schulze and set about changing their sound. The recorded result was a 12" laid down at Richmond Recorders in January 1983, and only released in New Zealand later that year. Despite leaving True Love way behind and generically falling in the new wave camp we can't hate it unreservedly. There are some good ideas at play on the record, nowhere more so than on track 3, Plain Jane. Slow tempoed, with interesting percussion and a pretty great refrain, we're happy to champion it. The rest of the EP is less to our taste, being more gothy, atmospheric and dare-we-say-it, dull. If so inclined, youtube is your friend.

Plain Jane (1983) [Download]

Plain Jane resurfaced in 1985 on an Australian 7" (EMI, EMI-1438). Re-recorded, and a minute shorter, points are deducted for the 1980's drum sound. On the plus side however the guitar under the chorus is much heavier, placing the song as a precursor to the sound labelled shoegaze in England some years later. The flipside of the 7", The Man Who Knew Too Much, appears to date from the 12" sessions, based on the production credits. It's an instrumental, and we'll leave it to you to search out. There was one further 7" in 1987.

Plain Jane (1985) [Download]

From the Marching Girls myspace(!) page.

1 comment:

SOTISE said...

THANKS for the memories..
hey i've just left a comment on your Danny Graham post, i met him a few times ...sadly i think he's dead