“In which the Screaming Blue Messiahs remind us that the rock radio of the mainstream 1980s sucked. All those Power Stations, Duran Durans, Huey Lewises, never ending hair metal catastrophes hogging up the airwaves and ramming home the point that malevolent criminals sat at the controls of the music biz, and they just didn’t care. Because we definitely had other options. We had the Messiahs who were everything their name promised: loud, angry, catchy as hell, and damned good, particularly on Gun Shy, their debut album. But nah, Bon Jovi was somehow more necessary.” (Philip Random)
As the story goes, Robert Fripp shut down the original King Crimson in 1974, claiming an overall disgust with the way the music industry world was going in those days. Of course, it could be argued that was version seven anyway, so many members having already come and gone from the Crimson court since 1969. But the intervening silence was inarguable. Nothing until 1981 when a fresh line-up kicked into gear with a whole new Discipline, which was maybe starting to lose some of its freshness come 1984’s Three of a Perfect Pair. But not on Side Two. Not Industry. That was what the world actually sounded like in 1984. Everything grinding, droning, hissing, giving off toxic vapors, finally erupting with savage urgency.
“It took me three albums before I finally got Talking Heads, the aptly named Fear of Music being one of those long players that absolutely does not have a weak moment (even the radio ad was a killer). From ballads to groovers to psyche outs to the powerhouse doom of Memories Can’t Wait, it was so good it was scary. But good luck hearing anything but the one song on the commercial rock radio of 1979 (and even that was mostly scarce). No doubt about it – the music industry was scared to f***ing death by stuff of the depth and quality of Fear of Music. So if you wanted to hear it, you had to go out and actually buy it, or tape a friend’s copy, kill the whole stupid industry. It was a tough job but somebody had to do it.” (Philip Random)