“Lubricate Your Living Room” by The Fire Engines - album review

TJR says

Totally wired “background music for now people” transmitted to you by young Edinburgh mentalists the Fire Engines who line-up: David Henderson (18, guitar, vocals), Murray Slade (~18, guitar), Graham Main (~20, bass guitar) and Russell Burn (17, drums). They had released their first single, “Get Up And Use Me” (re-recorded for the album), late in 1980, and this mini LP was available in January, 1981. Produced and conceptualized by Bob Last for his brand new Pop Aural label, it was a bit of a piss-take on consumerism, as told by the cover design, the album title and the very songs themselves. 8 tracks at a budget price of £2.49 too, roll up roll up. I say “songs”, but they're probably better described as abrasive energy bursts. As frontman Henderson put it: “It’s not actual songs, it's just something else to do, it's not some big important thing. It's just a record, it's to be fucking played. It's not like this is our first LP and we mean this kind of thing. It's none of that. It's not our LP. It's an amalgamation between Pop:Aural and Codex Communication using the Fire Engines, and it's just that, and it's brilliant.” It shows that they'd been listening to groups like the Velvet Underground, the Voidoids, Television, PIL, Gang Of Four, The Pop Group, The Fall, and that NYC No Wave comp, paying particular attention to the frenetic white-avant-funk of James Chance and the Contortions. Davey Henderson: “We played to our strengths which were minimal, but somehow, as a band, it worked. We never played chords and Russell didn’t use cymbals or hi-hats. It was very violent although no-one got hurt. Pure aggression, attitude and hate was what it was. Russell would always start the songs, and the intensity of his adrenaline-rush dictated the speed the band would play them. The energy in these days was unbelievable”. An impressed John Peel gave the album plenty of exposure and invited them down for a session within weeks, followed by a second session later in the year. This was the ultimate endorsement. Peel knew that, as a concept, this pre-pub lubrication for your living room did exactly what it said on the tin. A bargain buy.

The Jukebox Rebel
30-Jun-2007

A1 [01:01] 5.1.png The Fire Engines - Plastic Gift (David Henderson, Murray Slade, Graham Main, Russell Burn) Post-Punk
A2 [02:50] 6.2.png The Fire Engines - Get Up And Use Me [version] (David Henderson, Murray Slade, Graham Main, Russell Burn) Post-Punk
A3 [03:12] 6.5.png The Fire Engines - Sympathetic Anaesthetic (David Henderson, Murray Slade, Graham Main, Russell Burn) Post-Punk
A4 [06:51] 7.3.png The Fire Engines - Discord (David Henderson, Murray Slade, Graham Main, Russell Burn) Post-Punk
B1 [02:54] 6.4.png The Fire Engines - New Thing In Cartons (David Henderson, Murray Slade, Graham Main, Russell Burn) New Wave
B2 [04:30] 7.5.png The Fire Engines - Hungry Beat (David Henderson, Murray Slade, Graham Main, Russell Burn) New Wave
B3 [04:33] 7.4.png The Fire Engines - Lubricate Your Living Room part 1 (David Henderson, Murray Slade, Graham Main, Russell Burn) Proto-Punk
B4 [02:33] 6.8.png The Fire Engines - Lubricate Your Living Room part 2 (David Henderson, Murray Slade, Graham Main, Russell Burn) Proto-Punk
B5 [00:52] 6.0.png The Fire Engines - Plastic Gift [reprise] (David Henderson, Murray Slade, Graham Main, Russell Burn) Post-Punk




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