Siouxsie and the Banshees – The Scream
Of the series: the albums that don’t change your life but which upset it …
Summer 1983, 5 years after its release, in an afternoon with some friends, I listened to the first Banshees album for the very first time and I found myself on high tide, I was overwhelmed by those sounds, those winks, that voice, those compositions so scathing that I took that vinyl with me and went to my house: love at first sight.
The same love that many people felt: resisting is stupid sometimes, especially with music where everything is attributable mainly to emotions.
The Scream is the root of an indefinable and indecipherable mass of branches that quickly came to contaminate the world of listenings. An album that is short but intense, a document in music of the situation of an England that tried to free itself from the greedy hands of Power. Punk had attempted to do this failing but leaving as a golden tail some authentic jewels that perhaps would have been less militant but much more incisive … Of them the most lucid and important are surely the Banshees, a whip less intense in its strength but more effective in entering our skin.
They detached from some conventions in music and knew how to embrace not only the lesson of punk but also that of the ‘60s English psychedelia.
This album is a stone resting on our feet, which dares to put pressure on them to lead us to a pain which is necessary: they are not songs but rather pieces of glass that reach our throat, however not with an impetus easily defined by punk as the only means … no, here we find the seduction, the caresses and the dry fists which cover our existence.
An album that I recommend to people who want to understand what type of music was the one that tended to distance itself from what was ineffective to sublimate it with its richness.
Sometimes in less than an hour you can find a paradise dressed in black …
The album opens with darkness, gloomy, slow and sensual sounds come to surprise us, and we are immediately astonished.
Here the music injects itself into the voice of the Queen of Darkness who, with few but effective vocalizations, pulls us close.
And we are already with our feet in the sea, a sound storm comes straight at us: bass, guitars and drums slice the air like a powerful flash, cross the sky and strike us in the face in the middle of the sea. The Queen takes the words, her voice and combines them with blood in a song that second by second takes away our strength…
Something like that has never been heard before …
Slowly, sly, like a waiting cat here comes Overground which is a toilet paper that wipes our ass, be careful, it’s sharp, it’s a cry in the dark that hurts … The drums here become tribal with guitars and riffs that intersect with a bass who is a magnet, everything smells like wind here …
CARCASS is the combination of the past punk which knew the vain glory and the intelligent music that enters the veins, we dance yes, but with words that are sabers …
HELTER SKELTER Here a psychedelic song by the Beatles is deconstructed, recomposed with knives and guns and spits and agitated and unnerving guitars … One of the Beatles’ most beautiful songs here is dressed with the passion of musicians who make it more modern but above all more explosive .
It is the tribe of sounds that takes the rhythm, accelerating the beats and becoming a meteorite that moves the stars with its vehemence.
Banshees like cats, they go out at night, stray and dirty, they cross the darkness to seduce it with scratches and a voice that is a bullet …
Punk appears here and it does that in a wonderful way with a song that is an arrow that shows us that punk is dead but there is still a lot to take from it … but here everything is more evolved and effective.
With the album that is about to launch other new jewels, we are clear in our mind that knowing how to modulate the voice like the Queen does and the way her Banshees know how to create complex textures is the prerequisite for total pleasure… with a final sax which surprises us …
The mother of Gothic music, the Father of Post Punk, this is a concentrate of beauty that is difficult to bear … it’s a breathtaking race …
Hong Kong Garden
A song that kisses the pop of the ‘70s, Asian like in its sounds for the first few seconds and then becoming a string …
It is a modern waltz, of high quality, which brings us to the shore after having risked drowning … this is the life preserver of our soul, it is the last jewel looking at us while we have no longer an ounce of strength, it is a therapy that makes us addicted, Staircase is the psychiatric treatment that removes our sins from our sight, a wonderful song.