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A Beginner’s Guide to the Virgin Prunes – Masterbag #11 (1982)

This issue of Masterbag – the news magazine of the independent wholesalers – features a 3-page article written by Claude Bessy with pictures by Colm Henry and additional quotes taken from interviews from NMX, Vox and Melody Maker.

Bessy writes: ” … The Virgin Prunes have refined the live part of their activities into a unique combination of theatrical sketches, primitive ceremonies that include temporary dives into wild lunacy, hard-driving rock sections heavy on the beat and the distorted bass, long wails of undiagnosed anguish, undecipherable actions and comical routines – everything fluctuating between the grotesque and the beautiful, all choreographed but unleashed amidst a reconstruction of someone’s beloved but horrendous living room: plants, crucifix, gas heater, television, tea cosy; lace drapes optional.”

“[…] the band still appeared on the Irish TV show ‘Non Stop Pop’ where they almost stuck to the rules by recreating the almost conventional ‘Pagan Lovesong’. […] And the boys from Ballymun looked good, really good – the call of the wild and all that, and they moved well and it was great. And then… And then somewhere after the instrumental break Guggi made the jump to the demented side, rolling his eyes like a real raver in the funny farm. And of course the cameraman happened to be right underneath, and with the blue light on the shaved sides of the goggling skull, the tongue dangling out amid the make-up of a junked-out child prostitute, the rules definitely got broken. Something wild and disturbing had been transmiteed into safe, warm Irish homes. And what can you do when this gang of cultural vandals gleefully hail from both sides of the religious crack?”

Read the full article (PDF)