GUSWORLD
Single Of The Week 27/05/97

Single Of The Week is where I review a single I'm particularly enamoured of at the moment. It might be a brand spanking new release, or a classic from decades past that I just feel like going on about.

Rainy Day
Geisha
EMI 1714

Revisionist paper hyenas are fond of promulgating the view that Australian popular music in the early 1980s was entirely derived from the strain popularly known as "pub rock". Bands that are invariably mentioned in this context are Midnight Oil, Cold Chisel, Australian Crawl, Divinyls and people of that ilk -- anyone who still forms the bulk of Australian content played on MMM these days. Even bands like INXS (who displayed a defiantly pop streak when they were still worth listening to) are lumped into this category, in order that they might be acceptable.

This just goes to show what a pretentious bunch of wankers rock critics can be. Quite aside from really obvious and highly successful exceptions like Split Enz, the Australian music that I remember from that period was a lot more than pub rock. The New Romantic movement and its successors weren't confined to the shores of the UK. There were plenty of local acts for whom a spiky haircut and a catchy hook were the crucial ingredients for success: Electric Pandas, Vita Beats, the Swingers, Pseudo Echo.

The little remembered Geisha fall into this category. Never a band who achieved massive commercial success, I couldn't even begin to tell you what they're up to these days. But their single 'Rainy Day' (their second, if I remember rightly) is a perfect little pop classic, that lodges well in the back of the brain and will stay there long after the Angels are a forgotten memory. Now if I could just find a copy on CD . . .


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