The Scarlet Beehive – A Return to the 1980s?

Plus ça change plus c'est la meme chose

Another election over.  It was the result I had predicted (see previous blog post “Never a frown with Gordon Brown), although not the one I had hoped for.  Nevertheless, as the Ant and Dec of politics begin their historic coalition government we can rest assured that interesting times lie ahead.

As regular readers of this blog (both of them in fact) will know I tend to find myself stuck in a time warp from the 1980s recalling the heady days of my youth.  Back then the Conservative Party led by a certain M. Thatcher (but albeit without the help of the Lib Dems) was in power.  Thatcher’s iron-fisted rule led to a certain discontentment among a section of society resulting in a flurry of creative activity within the fields of art, literature, comedy, cinema and music.  With retro-nostalgia back in vogue one wonders if we’re in for something of an artistic renaissance.

Thanks to modern technology (Youtube take a bow) I’m able to recreate the memories of my youth.

Thanks to the said site I was able to find two songs from late 1980s which I hadn’t heard for over 20 years.

One is I walk the earth – the official anthem of the Rambler Association (not really, but it would be a good idea) by the “Anglo-American college rock/alternative band” (Wikipedia’s description, not mine) Voice of the Beehive, who had a string of hits at this time, but son faded back into obscurity.  Which is a shame as they did make some decent tunes.

The other song is a one hit wonder (and a rather good one at that), Scarlet Fantastic’s No Memory – the official anthem of the Amnesiacs Association (very bad taste I know).  No doubt complaints will flood in – that is if anyone actually reads this blog!  Big hair and cleavage were the order of the day in this video.

It’s funny how listening to a certain pierce of music can trigger off memories in the subconscious. 

 Think inner city riots, anti-apartheid demonstrations, boycotting South African fruit in the supermarkets, skeletal bearded men wrapped in blankets in filthy shit-smeared prison cells, running battles between police and striking miners, Russian tanks rolling over Afghanistan, Americans in Grenada, warfare amidst the penguins and sheep on wind-swept South Atlantic islands, loud-mouthed Dubliners ranting about famine in Ethiopia, the Chernobyl disaster, statues of communist dictators being toppled, BMX bikes, footballers in tight shorts with bubble perms and moustaches, Joan Collins in shoulder pads, Rubiks cubes, grotesque rubber puppets imitating the politicians and celebrities of the day…I could go on all day.

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2 comments

  1. The No Memory video is an odd one – blokey playing his unplugged lecky guitar, Bucks Fizz stylie skirt ripping.
    Maybe this video was the inspiration for Kevin Smith’s Clerks – their prison cell becomes his store with the grill down – meaning he could film at night without worrying about natural light and do it all cheaper.

  2. Yes, the 1980s….Some of our formative years. There is much about the 1980s that I don’t miss in the least, including hard right government in the UK, Charles Haughey, thin leather ties, shoulderpads on womens’ jackets, Bucks Fizz (the band and not the drink), and the awful political turmoil in Northern Ireland where CW and I grew up. I suppose the zeitgeist of the era was, rightly or wrongly, the goal of making money, as Gordon Gecko said in “Wall Street”, “greed is good.” Whatever one’s views on this are, we emerged from the 1980s a less tolerant, community based, and cohesive society than during the 1970s, but probably more efficient and wealthy. And, of course, as CW has mentioned, the overriding spirit of the age gave birth to some great comedy satire, including Spitting Image, New Statesman (Rick Mayall’s comedy programme), Loadsamoney, and Alexei Sayle. I don’t include Ben Elton in this group because I didn’t like him much as an alternative stand-up comedian – too much “in your face” (although his talents as a writer of Blackadder are second to none).

    However, moving beyond the UK and Ireland, one thing that I do perhaps miss is that greater sense of moral certainty which we had here in the West. Communism in Eastern Europe and Russia (although we didn’t know it at the time) was crumbling during the 1980s, but still putting up a struggle, and well I remember the part that people like Reagan, Thatcher, and heroic figues Lech Walesa, Vaclav Havel, and Pope John Paul II played in bringing freedom to those in that part of the world. This has been a change that people such as CW and I can now benefit from on our travels in Central and Eastern Europe!

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