A Passion For The Passions: Moody Post Punk New Wave Deliciousness

It isn't often that I come across a group I have never heard of before, particularly when that group was only active from 1978-1983. This is my most favorite time period for music, bringing the best of the 'nu-wave' angry, dark and gritty, just the way I like it.

While on a recent vinyl hunting trip, I came across a little 45 that looked interesting, and for fifty cents I thought I'd give it a shot....

This 7" was called 'The Swimmer' by a UK band called The Passions circa 1981. Ohhhhhh Mommy! I rarely get so lucky as to hit the jackpot on a guesstimation. The only clues I had were the look of the band on the back of the picture sleeve, the fact that it was dated 1981 and on a label I hadn't come across yet; Fiction Records.

What is even better about this is treasure isn't the title song--which, don't get me wrong, is great--but the B side; Some Fun is AMAZING. Have a listen...
After playing it a few times I began my research, and was surprised to have come up with as much as I did. Most of the band used to be in the London punk band The Derelicts, and were led by female singer Barbara Grogan. A little reminiscent of The Cure; Bass-heavy with jangling guitars, and darkly poppy, I'd wondered where they'd been all my life. And the fact that they split up in just five short years sorta makes it even better, they are just this capsuled little secret I have. Only you may have heard of them from their one and only hit 'I 'm In Love With A German Film Star'...

So this was great, but I wanted more, much more. Searching for one of their albums didn't take long, but brought up precious few choices. Being that I am becoming quite the obsessed vinyl junkie, I had to find something, anything on vinyl, and luckily I found not one but TWO more 7"s (Hunted b/w Oh No, It's You and Jump For Joy b/w The Story) and their debut  album 'Michael & Miranda' from 1980 all for incredibly reasonable prices. Merry Christmas to me!!!

The search continues for their two other studio albums on vinyl, which has been said to be something of a challenge (I love a challenge!) but their second album, Thirty Thousand Feet Over China is available on CD which is part compilation of previously released hits, and a few new recordings. Don't you just love it when an obsession starts with just one little unexpected find, crawling around the floor of a dirty record shop? I sure do.

1 comment:

  1. I remember seeing The Passions in 1979 I think playing in a small West London community centre in Acklam Road under the Hammersmith flyover- the main route out of London heading west. It was a 50/50 black/white crowd and a superb reggae/dub band called Misty in Roots were also on the bill. Needless to say, quite a few herbal substances were smoked that night, washed down with a West Indian beer called Red Stripe. A night to remember, indeed......

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