Spizz - Spizz History
Though a product of the punk era, Spizz was never comfortable with the punk tag but used it to enable him to explore his own ideas and devices about music. Among these was a fascination with science-fiction. This manifested itself so-clearly in the titles of many of the tracks, covering the Judge Dredd comic series but above all Star Trek. Tracks such as "Where's Captain Kirk?" and "Spock's Missing" are included on this compilation.
The first side is pretty much the standard Spizz stuff. Just him and his guitar, with the occasional addition of bass and some percussion from O'Dowd. Whatever limitations his voice placed on him were overcome by the plaintiff wailing and rising and falling, the exaggeration of the melody and the occasional silliness of the words he sang. Spizz was never one who intended himself to be taken too seriously. His music, sparse and stark though it often was, was all about having fun.
The second side goes from good to bloody marvellous. Is it as if Spizz was showing what he could do when he did the last few tracks here. "Where's Captain Kirk" and "Spock's Missing" are probably the most well-known of his compositions and reflect the interest he had in sci-fi which frequently runs throughout his music. But he has now picked up a backing band, fuller and more complete the music sounds as a result. By the end, he really shows what he can do. "Work" drives along, a thundering drum beat with some lyrics which are all about the bathos of the mundane - going to work, making a cup of tea and sitting at a desk. The album is rounded off by his finest track, "Megacity: 3". Returning to sci-fi themes, he describes in sometimes quite humorous terms the location of Judge Dredd's exploits without mentioning Dredd once -
"More television stations than in Mega One or Two/The largest civic centre and the biggest indoor zoo."
End this with a piece of excellent guitar work overlaying that synthesiser and you have Spizz's masterpiece. And yet in many ways, although musically somewhat out-of-character with the minimalist approach of his earlier work, as a song rooted in science fiction it is undeniably, unmistakeably Spizz.
Spizz was one of those artists whose albums or even his singles I would never go out and buy but just had to have a compilation. When this came out I went straight out and bought it, much to the amazement and consternation of friends. But I have never regretted doing so. This album is a good compilation by an artist who occasionally aspired to brilliance.
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on 2011-03-06 CharlesMartel Said:
Quirky compilation from one of the forgotten pioneers of post punk/synth pop.