Sunday, June 19, 2011

Blast from the Past: God Fodder

Artist:  Ned’s Atomic Dustbin (Official, Facebook, MySpace, Last.fm, AllMusic, Wikipedia)

Ned’s Atomic Dustbin did what few other bands have been about to do in the past 30 years – they created something unique.  Within their sound you hear hints and textures of everything from The Charlatans UK to The Ramones but I have yet to hear any band before or since that you can directly compare to Ned’s Atomic Dustbin.  The band mixed dance-friendly beats with effects-laden guitar and dual bass to create a high energy sound that fans of the Manchester scene and punk could all readily enjoy. 

The band’s 1991 debut album, God Fodder, was nothing short of brilliant.  Opening with the anthem “Kill Your Television,” Ned’s Atomic Dustbin perfectly set the stage for the rest of the album mixing the fast and fun with irreverent lyrics.  Three singles were released from the record, the aforementioned “Kill Your Television,” “Happy,” and “Grey Cell Green” – all three of which are brilliantly catchy, fun, and were mainstays on 120 Minutes in 1991.  The rest of the album is equally as strong; there really isn’t a slow or bad moment on the thing. 

God Fodder spent a lot of time in my tape deck during my sophomore and junior years of high school.  This album and band blew me away with their catchy songs and irreverent yet hopeful lyrics.  In a lot of ways Ned’s Atomic Dustbin perfectly captured the feeling of the early 1990s (angry yet hopeful) and it’s this energy and vibe that has kept me coming back to God Fodder for 20 years.  To this day this record still holds all of the exuberant energy, anger, and hopefulness that it did in 1991.  This of course could be my own nostalgia talking and those who didn’t experience Ned’s Atomic Dustbin the first time around may hear a dated record, but I like to think otherwise.       

And something that I just learned, Ned’s was apparently part of the Grebo scene in the UK along with bands like Pop Will Eat Itself and Carter the Unstoppable Sex Machine.  I’m not sure how I missed hearing about this little subgenre but I think that it is a pretty good fit for Ned’s Atomic Dustbin.  That having been said, I still stand behind my statement that I have yet to hear any band that you can directly compare to Ned’s Atomic Dustbin. 

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