Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The Majestic Amateurism of The Four Plugs

Hey it's a 45 not from the 90s.

When I was first learning use the software which I use to make my podcast and convert vinyl into MP3, this 45 was my first test subject. I had forgotten that I still had the MP3s until recently so I decided to post here them for your enjoyment.

I first heard of the Four Plugs via a Johan Kugelberg list of his top 100 punk singles in Ugly Things Magazine. He repeated it again in his list of the top 100 D.I.Y. singles:

12. The Four Plugs -Biking Girl (Disposable Records UK 1979) The subtle charm of marginal culture: Truly marginal culture where 1000 singles were pressed more than 22 years ago. How many got lost? How many are never being played? How many are stored in a box in the attic? How many are being played repeatedly on turntables that cost ten times as much as the recording and pressing of this given 45? "She used to be my biking partner/she used to be my biking girl. We used to go for rides in the country side". A true punk rock/diy statement issued by the Damaged Goods people, who knew their Chesterton and Thomas Browne.

I suppose the hearing someone who is completely atonal sing a tender ballad is always "charming." "Biking Girl" stands right at the precipice of there slippery-slope of punk/D.I.Y. ethos and actual outsider art. The A-side is ever so slightly more conventional but it's no slouch either.

Play or Download The Four Plugs "Wrong Treatment"

Play or Download The Four Plugs "Biking Girl"


Jim C said...

Lovely to hear the original of Biking Girl! It was recently covered by The Paraffins on Filthy Little Angels' Valentine comp:

Anonymous said...

I bought this single in Manchester in 1979! I've never met anyone else who knew about it. I'ver just played it on my turntable and it's great!

Unknown said...

This single was partially recorded via telephone, the man behind the Four Plugs was John Irvine and later reincarnated as Idol Death. I'm pretty sure I own the only hand drawn cassette copy of Idol Death's full album.