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i ♥ the eighties : 1987.

on a spring break trip to angle-land.So every time I put Sir Squirmy in his rear-facing, under-22-lbs. car seat, the same song pops into my head, particularly if we are headed for the Pacific Coast Highway, which is two blocks from our house. (I sing it to him, but even more deadpan than Kim does.) My mind being my mind, this has set me off into a weeks-long nostalgia fest, which I will now share with you. Buckle up 'cause this is ancient history.

Of course the first thing I did was pull out the Sonic Youth album, which I only vaguely remembered re-buying on CD and which I hadn't listened to for years. But oh, I loved it so much when it came out ... eighteen years ago! Sister is still my favorite record of theirs, and that period including E.V.O.L. and their Lydia Lunch & Richard Kern collaborations is unequaled in my opinion. It still sounds great.

+ sonic youth – sister – "schizophrenia" +

+ sonic youth – sister – "(i got a) catholic block" +

on a field trip to d.c.playing photobooth dress-up with randy toy.This got me to thinking about 1987 in general. It was a really diverse year for music, at least from my perspective. I frequented underage hardcore shows and bad-fake-ID-accepting gay discos. I heard Gregorian chant on a Latin club field trip to a monastery in Maryland. I probably went to every GWAR show that year, but I was most excited about Gene Loves Jezebel. I saw my first, thrilling, live Swans performance in a tiny club in Richmond, as well as a very disappointing Bowie concert in a huge, soulless arena. I was pretty much up for anything. Including hair colors—yes that's me as a blond to the right there. Fun fact: the other fellow's true, honest-to-God name is Randy Tοy.

spooky, spooky!And I guess I actually kept up with new music at the time. Thinking about what came out in 1987 that I was into when it was new ... there just seems to be such a dearth of decent music these days. Oh, I know this is just me Being Old, but there were some great releases. In addition to SY's Sister, the Swans album that year—Children of God—grabbed me and shook me up something fierce. That was right about the time I was getting into the World Serpent bands (Death In June, Current 93, et al.) as well, but I think my love for Swans has been more enduring. And as long as I'm lumping bands together, Skinny Puppy and Tear Garden had amazing LSD soundtrack albums in 1987 as well. But back to Swans.

+ swans - children of god - "children of god" +

+ swans - children of god - "new mind" +

awkwardly growing-out blond. always the worst. why did i wait so long to dye it?!I could sit here and write for hours about what new music mattered to me in 1987, or I could just post some more. Here are some selections from five other albums I listened to incessantly that year. (I was disappointed, in doing some research just now, to see that New Order's Brotherhood in fact came out in 1986, disqualifying it from this list. Same with Gene Loves Jezebel's Discover and the Bolshoi's Friends. Suffice it to say that those were also frequently played well past their release dates. Anyway. Onward...)

+ concrete blonde – concrete blonde – "still in hollywood" +

+ concrete blonde – concrete blonde – "dance along the edge" +

+ cindy lee berryhill – who's gonna save the world? – "she had everything" +

+ cindy lee berryhill – who's gonna save the world? – "steve on h" +

+ the smiths – the world won't listen – "shoplifters of the world" +

+ depeche mode – music for the masses – "never let me down again" +

+ siouxsie & the banshees – through the looking glass – "hall of mirrors" +

Oh, and the club hits! I remember during the summer of 1987 I went out nearly every night of the week. (Monday: Poseurs in D.C., Tuesday: Rockitz, Wednesday: the Bus Stop, Thursday: Tracks in D.C. [$3 pitchers with a "college ID"], Friday: Pyramid, Saturday: stay in until the amateurs peter out, then to Fielden's.) I'm not going to bother ripping/finding mp3's for these, but just off the top of my head...

i briefly went out with the girl on the right, and elaine, in the middle, lived with s____ a few years after this. a *lot* went on in between ;)Depeche Mode – "Strangelove" / Sisters Of Mercy – "This Corrosion" / The Cure – "Why Can't I Be You?" / Nitzer Ebb – "Join In The Chant" / KTP – "Certain Things Are Likely" / Echo & the Bunnymen – "Lips Like Sugar" / The Cure – "Just Like Heaven" / New Order – "True Faith" / Dead Milkmen – "Instant Club Hit" / Dead Or Alive – "Brand New Lover" / INXS – "New Sensation" / Sinead O'Connor – "I Want Your Hands On Me" / Erasure – "Victim of Love" ...

† † † † †

Oh. My. God. Stop presses. I just found the ultimate 1987 artifact in my filing cabinet. Behold, the December Rockitz Dance Night Top 50! Wow. Maybe in retrospect it wasn't the center of the universe, but right now nothing can beat this for pure, unadulterated nostalgia, so I'm just going to stop there.


( 26 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 16th, 2005 03:16 am (UTC)
this is just great!!!
Mar. 16th, 2005 06:37 am (UTC)
Thanks! Memories...
Mar. 16th, 2005 03:18 am (UTC)
you'll dance to anything by depeche commode
This is excellent, all of it! Thank you.
Mar. 16th, 2005 06:40 am (UTC)
oh baby look at you, don't you look like siouxsie sioux...
My pleasure. I would like a time tunnel to jump through right now.
Mar. 16th, 2005 03:37 am (UTC)
This is such a great post!
I am looking forward to getting home from work and downloading :)
Mar. 16th, 2005 06:41 am (UTC)
I hope you like them!
Mar. 16th, 2005 03:38 am (UTC)
Wow. Thanks for posting this!

I think it was the summer of 1988 when you visited me in Westwood and we ate at Johnny Rockets. You were in full-on Goth drag. Ah, nostalgia. Looking back, I was obviously a Goth before I ever hit puberty; I can't imagine why it took me until twenty-eight to go Goth clubbing.

Actually, I can: social deficit.
Mar. 16th, 2005 03:48 am (UTC)
Oh, I remember that day! That was fun. Except I took the bus there from Tanith's and some Valley girls asked me if I was "a peace punk." A what? Also I bought the Lydia Lunch/Exene Cervenka book of collaborative poetry Adulterers Anonymous that day, which everyone back home was trés jealous of.

Jesus, what happened to Westwood between the late '80s and the late '90s, anyway? Ugh.
Mar. 16th, 2005 03:57 am (UTC)
aww you're so cute in ye gothen days. those are fantastic pictures.
Mar. 16th, 2005 06:45 am (UTC)
I wish I had better pictures of my 1987 attempts at being David Sylvian.

Mar. 16th, 2005 04:19 am (UTC)
my god this is right on time. i've been listening to evol and death valley 69 a lot lately. maybe it's sir wee squirm but it's been parelllel lines between us lately. either way he's been the only good news lately.
Mar. 16th, 2005 06:26 am (UTC)
I spent, oh, like half a day slsk-ing the DV69 video film a couple months ago. So, so great. It was even a partial inspiration for a birthday party a few years back. If you don't have it, let me know where I can email 60mb mpeg...

p.s. no deleting!
(Deleted comment)
Mar. 16th, 2005 06:36 am (UTC)
cindy lee berryhill still rules! get 'living room 16'.
Haha. You know, amazingly, that photobooth picture was taken literally about an hour after I met Randy & we ended up staying pretty close friends for the seven years between that moment and when I left Richmond. He's one of my favorite people of all time.
Mar. 16th, 2005 04:35 am (UTC)
Fun post.

Pyramid...I remember seeing ads for that club back in the day, I think it closed in the mid 90's. I know Fieldens is still there, I have yet to go there since I've never been clubbing up in Richmond.
Mar. 16th, 2005 06:31 am (UTC)
Never?! Oh wait. Of course not. Why would you?

Actually, Richmond was fun for about half an hour, over a decade ago. Scarlett's in the old train station, Funkytown doing impromptu '70s runway shows, Empire in the old Scandals space (with new & improved scandals). Or maybe I'm humoring myself in my dotage.
Mar. 16th, 2005 09:57 am (UTC)
this post made me incredibly nostalgic for my old club days too !!!

i am in love with all of the pictures.

oh, how i wish someone would invent a time machine.

i think we should all dress up and go dancing.

Mar. 16th, 2005 06:13 pm (UTC)
I don't really know you, but I know you love cupcakes. And I don't know a damn thing about Johnny Cupcakes, but it's still a nice site that I thought you'd appreciate:

Mar. 16th, 2005 11:07 pm (UTC)
thank you thank you thank you thank you !!!!

that marilyn monroe cupcake shirt NEEDS to be mine !!!
Mar. 16th, 2005 11:11 pm (UTC)
You're welcome, thought you'd dig that.

I want the ribcage with the cupcake heart one, but it doesn't appear to be for sale.
Mar. 17th, 2005 03:12 am (UTC)
i want pretty much ALL of those shirt !!!

the wu-tang one is kinda rad too !
Mar. 16th, 2005 08:03 pm (UTC)
M.A.R.R.S. ... needs ... women.
I need to go dancing soon! I'd actually settle for a night that replicated that Rockitz top 50 list, I think...
Mar. 16th, 2005 11:09 pm (UTC)
Re: M.A.R.R.S. ... needs ... women.
i would pretty much take anything at this point too.

it's amazing how different things were 8 years ago. i was out every single night dancing and drinking and STILL went to work. now, i never do anything and i never drink and all i do is work.

the horror of it all.

Mar. 16th, 2005 03:28 pm (UTC)
you are so great...
Mar. 16th, 2005 03:43 pm (UTC)
Okay, today you're scaring me. The odds are, oh, about 90% that we were on the dance floor together at Poseurs on a Monday night circa 1987. (Although my preferred fake ID-accepting gay bar of choice was always the Lost & Found, around the corner from Tracks, and by '87 I was "grandfathered" in DC anyway.) Granted, only if I was visiting on a break from colleage but still... Weird. And believe-you-me, once I got to Bloomington, IN, I missed Tracks and Poseurs and the 9:30 like mad.
Mar. 16th, 2005 06:53 pm (UTC)
Small world. You, and me, and the guy that obviously spent the majority of his free time working on the subtleties of his Daniel Ash impersonation. Plus several dozen Siouxsie clones. Good times!! I just loved Poseurs. How they maintained such an incredibly high hipster to frat boy ratio IN GEORGETOWN is a mystery that has puzzed me ever since. Tracks was fun when I was wide-eyed & innocent, but I can remember too many post-1987 "incidents" that either started or ended there for me to be terribly nostalgic about it.
Mar. 16th, 2005 04:17 pm (UTC)
Thank you Scythie for a most awesome post to come home to!
( 26 comments — Leave a comment )