Album Review

The Lurkers: Sex Crazy (Damaged Goods)

CD/DL/LP – Limited edition Pink or Green coloured vinyl

Available to pre-order / released 9 Oct 2020

8/10

Pete Stride – Nigel Moore – Esso – a brand new album from the original Lurkers.  Long time fan Ged (Dear Gerald) Babey declares it an album of heads-down, no-nonsense punk rock’n’roll on a par with Fulham Fallout and Gods Lonely Men -but he is on his fourth Stella…

There are a few of us, born in the Sixties, teenagers in the Seventies, lovers of Punk, Rock, beer and good-times, who think of the Lurkers as being just as important as The Clash.

Others may mock and sneer – but the Lurkers were a proper working class rock’n’roll band. Punk Rock was their chance and they grabbed it. There was no pretence. No ‘politics’, no Kings Road manager and they sang about mad girls, good times, bad times, sex and being outsiders.

Forty-three years on the three original Lurkers have presumably hit 60 and have brought out a brand new full length album – something they’d’ve thought unimaginable in 1977.

The surprising thing perhaps is that it’s a very good, unpretentious punk rock’n’roll record – in essence, pretty much the same as Fulham Fallout and Gods Lonely Men.   Sonically it’s a bit different, a big fat overdriven guitar sound – but the same melodic, top-string hooks, but basically, song-wise it’s the same.  The humour, the simplicity, the tunes are all there.

Here’s a traditional track by track run-down of Sex Crazy.

Fits You Like A Glove – Great big power-chords and a classic kind of ‘I Don’t Need to Tell Her’ unrequited love song –‘Wish I wuz the one.. I wanna be her man‘. Poor old Pete Stride, never lucky in love it seems.

Axe Static Meltdown – fast, heads-down stuff with a lyric which on first listen I thought was about ‘releasing dolphins in my head’ – an eco-message? Very Greta! Until I realised it was endorphins!

London Jeepster – a song about a dodgy character I imagine to be very much like Super Hans in Peep Show -who was in turn based on Withnail.

Sex Crazy – Up’s the pace again. No sign of age slowing down these boys.  Classic Lurkers but supercharged in the guitar department with a practically Steve Jones guitar solo – appropriately enough, given the subject matter.

The Boys in the Corner – now, THIS, is  at the emotional heart of the album. A drinking song, about and dedicated to those no longer with us.  And we never will  forget, those no longer able, to be at the table. It’s an honest admission that we all older now, and raises a glass to the (ghosts of) the boys sat in the corner of the metaphorical pub we are in listening to the band. Probably the bands best song for many a year. If you don’t shed a tear listening to this for the first time, whilst thinking of a much-missed friend, well…

Approaching System Overload – now this really is a song about ecology and mans destruction of the planet – who’d’ve thought it. The Lurkers do care, and are closet hippies! A great punk rock tune though.

High Velocity  came out a while back as a single- with guest vocalist Danie (then from The Featherz, but who is now lead singer with fabulous all-female Slade tribute band Slady!  I wrote about it here -it’s a barnstormer of a song.  It has the Lurkers vibe straight away -high-energy, straight-forward punk rock and roll..  It’s a nice piece of ramalama ding-dong punk pop.

Tracey vs Julia. More female suburban drama and another fine tradition in Lurker-world: the song about the eponymous girl -like gun-toting Jenny and poor mad Mary. This time it’s two of them, fighting in the street, like that scene from Up The Junction with the young Maureen Lipman.

Magical Times is sheer punk rock nostalgia and a love song at the same time it seems – some great bass playing from Nigel on this.

This Is Your Revolution – I see this as being about a personal revolution -in how you feel about yourself rather than a call to arms -which is exactly how I always thought of the Lurkers. A concise, perfect encapsulation of the essence of the band.

Electrical Guitar – I can just imagine Pete Strides old nan saying ‘is he still playing that Electrical Guitar?’ in a classic Hilda Ogden-ism (You’re one of those punk rockets!)  Play it loud!  Fast and Furious – classic Lurkers! I reviewed it here when it came out. “a less-is-more classic in praise of the simple joys of loud rock’n’roll with four-beats-in-the-bar. On first listen you can’t help think of the time when the Lurkers were contemporaries of Buzzcocks, Sham 69 and X-Ray Spex…”

Doll Number Five – oh, yes – a love song to an inflatable sex-doll?  The fifth – so the other four must’ve burst!    I’ve waited so long for you –  cos the fuckin post from the Far East takes AGES!

Quiet As A Mouse  – Could be the band re-telling the story of Anne Frank, I dunno, just one of those catchy songs with a bit of a darker side that the band specialize in.

There’s not a naff track, it’s pretty convincingly the best thing the Lurkers 3 have brought out. Not that the GLM Gods Lonely Men material was that bad, this is just ‘proper’, the business, y’know – it has that identity, wit and feel of the original band.

When so many of the punk generation end up a bit of an embarrassment and become caricatures of themselves it’s great to see the Lurkers basically haven’t changed and are still the honest, straight-forward, unpretentious punk rock’n’roll bar-band they always were.  Even if they are still Sex Crazy after all these years!

The single ‘Fits You Like A Glove’ is out as a limited 7″ on yellow vinyl today

Buy the album from here

Lurkers / Damaged Goods Website

All words Ged Babey

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