5/15/17

Subway Sect - Ambition / Different Story 7" (1978)



Weird I'd never re-up this one since the first post in 2009 (almost 8 years, it's crazy). It's one of the best single of the punk era and have never been altered by time. So here it is again. Thanks to Paul for requesting it. I should post more Vic Godard in the near future. 

In 1978, Vic Godard was considered by many, and in particular the musical press, as one of the punks who would become a star, or at least, would do a long and fruitfull career. We were all wrong and it is a great waste. I don't really know what happened in Vic's brain in 1979 and 1980, but he decided to dramatically changed his mind about his musical direction, and if his first album was quite an achievement (but not as much as a Subway Sect album building a sound on this single would have been), his later lounge style did please me at the time but retrospectively, seems a commercial suicide. But maybe it could have worked, I don't know. When it was released, I remember thinking he was trying to become commercial and not that he was trying to kill himself artistically. However, he failed. But back in 1978. With "Ambition", he signed one of the greatest songs of the punk wave. Somewhere between Buzzcocks and the Only Ones, with echoes of Television and Marc Bolan, it is all punk needed to become. Using strange little organ sounds and not the usual punk drumming, avoiding any "new wave" tendency such as XTC or Wire were driving what was first a brutal and simplistic music, Vic Godard and his Subway Sect was really doing something important for the future of the movement. Spectacularily, this song did not lose any of its emotional potential and has travelled through the years quite well. If you are one of those thinking that punk was a bad flash in a loosy pan, give it a try. "Different Story", the B-side (with the text on the cover) is also excellent.


Here's the lyrics of "Ambition"

You can take it or leave it as far as we're concerned. Because we're not concerned with you. What you want is buried in the present tense. Blind alleyways allay the jewels". I am a dried-up seed can't be restored. I hope no-one notices the sleep on me. I've been walking along down this shallow slope. Looking for nothing particularly. Am I guided or is this life for free. Because nothing ever seems to happen to me. And I won't be tempted by vile evils. Because vile evils are vile evils...



3 comments:

Paul C said...

Fantastic blog you have.Any chance of a reup please?

Hamster said...

Thanks for posting this & bringing back some hazy memories from 40 years ago. Punk never made it to my prim and proper neighbourhood so all we had was the music.

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