Friday, May 30, 2008

Front 242 Fridays: Don't Crash

My favorite moments in my Rock and Roll memory are when I encounter a band that seems familiar and yet alien and unknowable and frightening. My first encounter with Euro-Industrial maevens Front 242 was like that. In 1987 I was working in New York and an adorable office mate named Amy spent the summer with me. Amy was from San Francisco but had grown up in Hong Kong (her father was some big executive type). She was filled with boundless energy, inspiring my art director to ask one morning when Amy was late, "So where's the ditzy little chatterbox?"

Amy turned me on to some of the new bands she was hearing in the underground clubs of SF and one of them was Front 242. "Don't Crash" was the first song I heard from them and it blew me away. The martial beat, the detuned synths, the Teutonic vocal- I knew exactly what they were drawing from but they did so in a way that set a new standard for Industrial dance music. Their 1988 album Front By Front is an absolute masterpiece of the genre.

The song is actually about a plane crash, so the visuals here don't really jibe. If I ever have some spare time in my life I think I'll do a YouTube vid set to it with plane crash footage from The X-Files and Millennium.

1 comment:

  1. :: sighs wistfully ::

    I still have Headhunter and Welcome to Paradise on vinyl.