Thursday, April 1, 2010
The Lost City of Chin Chin
Speaking of the girl group influence and obscure female-fronted punk, Slumberland Records is re-releasing the one and only album of Chin-Chin, a Swiss all-girl post-punk outfit active in the 1980s. Like a lot of great punk bands, Chin-Chin took inspiration from '60s girl groups, but they did so in a forward-looking way that also aligned them with the DIY pop music scene emerging in England at the time.
In 1984, they released a 7". Their only full-length, Sound of the Westway, came out the following year on a label called Farmer, and their final release, an EP called Stop Your Crying, came out on Scotland's 53rd and 3rd label.
Sound of the Westway will be available on minty fresh vinyl only, April 13. But you can click this link and hear a song right now: "Dark Days" . (One song is not enough.)
I learned about Chin-Chin yesterday. I'm told that those who are in the know have been in rapt anticipation of this re-release, but I like to think the band is really a brilliant gem about to be rescued from obscurity. (Possibly, both things are true.) I draw this hasty conclusion from the fact that the band is nowhere to be found in the index of Simon Reynolds's Rip It Up and Start Again: Postpunk 1978-1984. Perhaps this means there is room on the shelf for a few more beautifully detailed post-punk surveys. Or an expanded edition, Rip It Up and Start Again: Now With Even More Girls!
I'd so run out and get that.