Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Music Box: X



When I was a kid, music was my life. Olivia Newton-John, the Beatles and Simon and Garfunkel were my absolute favorites. But the summer of '82 was a turning point in my young life. My brother Bill came home from his internship at The Phoenix Gazette one night with a stack of promotional LPs he'd gotten and it introduced us to a whole new sound: The Cure's "Pornography," Siouxsie and the Banshees' "Juju" (with a bonus 7-inch of "Israel"), Gang of Four's "Songs of the Free," Wall of Voodoo's "Call of the West," Oingo Boingo's "Nothing to Fear," plus "Urgh! A Music War" with Klaus Nomi, XTC, the Fleshtones, Magazine and so on.
But the album that made the biggest impression on us -- along with my pal Greg -- was easily X's "Under the Big Black Sun." We'd never heard anything so cool as Billy Zoom's powerful rockabilly guitar licks, and John Doe and Exene Cervenka were like the punk Buckingham- Nicks: so great alone, but so much better together.

Although I later got and loved its predecessors, "Los Angeles" and "Wild Gift," "Under the Big Black Sun" is still my favorite for it's the one album that can truly make me feel like I'm 15-year-old Columbus, discovering the New Wave World.

Especially: "Blue Spark," "How I (Learned My Lesson)," "Riding With Mary"

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

What's an LP?

nojarama said...

What a gem indeed! And so sad to hear that Exene is ill with MS. She is a national treasure IMO. And you're right, they (John & Exene) are the punk version of Buckingham-Nicks!

spankanthony said...

I'm always astounded by our similar tastes. Tennis and such and now X ...I too was introduced about 15...truly the punk buckingham nicks. Sad about Exene I went backstage and talked to her when they played LA in december and she looked fantastic...I remember commenting how healthy she looked.

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