39 Clocks – Pain It Dark [reissue]

January 01, 1970

(Bureau
B)

 

 

www.bureau-b.com

 

The
39 Clocks could have hailed from exactly nowhere other than 1981 Germany. If the
post-punk era was all about inverting the revolution of the late ’70s, this duo
saw fit to not only explode tropes about New Wave music, but also sought to
destroy any preconceptions one may have had about German musicians being
stone-faced auteurs. The group’s performances were legendarily confrontational,
drawing upon similar philosophical inspirations as the New York No Wavers by
cramming noise, audience-baiting and garage-rock simplicity down concertgoers’
throats.

 

Unfortunately,
the tunes on Pain It Dark don’t
muster up quite the same amount of animosity. The duo’s “Psycho Beat”
sound (named, logically enough, after their own song) comes off as more
“beat” than “psycho” in its studio form, and although cuts
like “Radical Student Mob in Satin Boots” and the utterly appropriately
titled “Stupid Art” were likely blistering in a live setting, their
impact is neutered here by era-specific production techniques and, ultimately,
the Clocks’ own minimalist touch.

 

Standout Tracks: “Psycho
Beat” “Stupid Art” JASON FERGUSON

 

 

 

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