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The B-52's - The B-52's

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The B-52's

The B-52's

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Even in the weird, quirky world of new wave and post-punk in the late '70s, the B-52's' eponymous debut stood out as an original. Unabashed kitsch mavens at a time when their peers were either vulgar or stylish, the Athens quintet celebrated all the silliest aspects of pre-Beatles pop culture -- bad hairdos, sci-fi nightmares, dance crazes, pastels, and anything else that sprung into their minds -- to a skewed fusion of pop, surf, avant-garde, amateurish punk, and white funk. On paper, it sounds like a cerebral exercise, but it played like a party. The jerky, angular funk was irresistibly danceable, winning over listeners dubious of Kate Pierson and Cindy Wilson's high-pitched, shrill close harmonies and Fred Schneider's campy, flamboyant vocalizing, pitched halfway between singing and speaking. It's all great fun, but it wouldn't have resonated throughout the years if the group hadn't written such incredibly infectious, memorable tunes as "Planet Claire," "Dance This Mess Around," and, of course, their signature tune, "Rock Lobster." These songs illustrated that the B-52's' adoration of camp culture wasn't simply affectation -- it was a world view capable of turning out brilliant pop singles and, in turn, influencing mainstream pop culture. It's difficult to imagine the endless kitschy retro fads of the '80s and '90s without the B-52's pointing the way, but The B-52's isn't simply an historic artifact -- it's a hell of a good time.
© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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The B-52's

The B-52's

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1
Planet Claire
00:04:36

The B-52's, MainArtist - Cindy Wilson, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Kate Pierson, Bass Guitar, Organ, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Keith Strickland, Drums, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Henry Mancini, Composer - Fred Schneider, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - CHRIS BLACKWELL, Producer - Ricky Wilson, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Frederick William Schneider, ComposerLyricist - Keith Julian Strickland, ComposerLyricist - Robert Ash, Producer

℗ 1979 UMG Recordings, Inc.

2
52 Girls
00:03:35

The B-52's, MainArtist - Cindy Wilson, ComposerLyricist - CHRIS BLACKWELL, Producer - Ricky Helston Wilson, ComposerLyricist - Frederick William Schneider, ComposerLyricist - Catherine Elizabeth Pierson, ComposerLyricist - Keith Julian Strickland, ComposerLyricist - Jerry Ayres, ComposerLyricist

℗ 1979 The Island Def Jam Music Group

3
Dance This Mess Around
00:04:36

The B-52's, MainArtist - Cindy Wilson, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Kate Pierson, Bass Guitar, Organ, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Keith Strickland, Drums, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Fred Schneider, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - CHRIS BLACKWELL, Producer - Ricky Wilson, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Ricky Helston Wilson, ComposerLyricist - Frederick William Schneider, ComposerLyricist - Catherine Elizabeth Pierson, ComposerLyricist - Keith Julian Strickland, ComposerLyricist - Robert Ash, Producer

℗ 1981 The Island Def Jam Music Group

4
Rock Lobster
00:06:52

The B-52's, MainArtist - Cindy Wilson, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Kate Pierson, Bass Guitar, Organ, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Keith Strickland, Drums, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Fred Schneider, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - CHRIS BLACKWELL, Producer - Ricky Wilson, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Ricky Helston Wilson, ComposerLyricist - Frederick William Schneider, ComposerLyricist - Keith Julian Strickland, ComposerLyricist - Cynthia Wilson, ComposerLyricist - Robert Ash, Producer

℗ 1979 UMG Recordings, Inc.

5
Lava
00:04:55

The B-52's, MainArtist - Cindy Wilson, ComposerLyricist - CHRIS BLACKWELL, Producer - Ricky Helston Wilson, ComposerLyricist - Frederick William Schneider, ComposerLyricist - Catherine Elizabeth Pierson, ComposerLyricist - Keith Julian Strickland, ComposerLyricist

℗ 1979 UMG Recordings, Inc.

6
There's A Moon In The Sky (Called The Moon)
00:04:57

The B-52's, MainArtist - Cindy Wilson, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Kate Pierson, Bass Guitar, Organ, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Keith Strickland, Drums, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Fred Schneider, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - CHRIS BLACKWELL, Producer - Ricky Wilson, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Ricky Helston Wilson, ComposerLyricist - Frederick William Schneider, ComposerLyricist - Catherine Elizabeth Pierson, ComposerLyricist - Keith Julian Strickland, ComposerLyricist - Robert Ash, Producer

℗ 1979 The Island Def Jam Music Group

7
Hero Worship
00:04:08

The B-52's, MainArtist - Cindy Wilson, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Kate Pierson, Bass Guitar, Organ, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Keith Strickland, Drums, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Fred Schneider, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - CHRIS BLACKWELL, Producer - Ricky Wilson, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Ricky Helston Wilson, ComposerLyricist - Robert Meriwether Waldrop, ComposerLyricist - Robert Ash, Producer

℗ 1979 The Island Def Jam Music Group

8
6060-842 (6060 842)
00:02:52

The B-52's, MainArtist - Cindy Wilson, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Kate Pierson, Bass Guitar, Organ, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Keith Strickland, Drums, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - Fred Schneider, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - CHRIS BLACKWELL, Producer - Ricky Wilson, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Ricky Helston Wilson, ComposerLyricist - Frederick William Schneider, ComposerLyricist - Catherine Elizabeth Pierson, ComposerLyricist - Keith Julian Strickland, ComposerLyricist - Robert Ash, Producer

℗ 1979 UMG Recordings, Inc.

9
Downtown
00:02:59

The B-52's, MainArtist - Cindy Wilson, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Kate Pierson, Bass Guitar, Organ, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - Keith Strickland, Drums, Percussion, AssociatedPerformer - TONY HATCH, ComposerLyricist - Fred Schneider, Percussion, Vocals, AssociatedPerformer - CHRIS BLACKWELL, Producer - Ricky Wilson, Guitar, AssociatedPerformer - Robert Ash, Producer

℗ 1979 UMG Recordings, Inc.

Descrizione dell'album

Even in the weird, quirky world of new wave and post-punk in the late '70s, the B-52's' eponymous debut stood out as an original. Unabashed kitsch mavens at a time when their peers were either vulgar or stylish, the Athens quintet celebrated all the silliest aspects of pre-Beatles pop culture -- bad hairdos, sci-fi nightmares, dance crazes, pastels, and anything else that sprung into their minds -- to a skewed fusion of pop, surf, avant-garde, amateurish punk, and white funk. On paper, it sounds like a cerebral exercise, but it played like a party. The jerky, angular funk was irresistibly danceable, winning over listeners dubious of Kate Pierson and Cindy Wilson's high-pitched, shrill close harmonies and Fred Schneider's campy, flamboyant vocalizing, pitched halfway between singing and speaking. It's all great fun, but it wouldn't have resonated throughout the years if the group hadn't written such incredibly infectious, memorable tunes as "Planet Claire," "Dance This Mess Around," and, of course, their signature tune, "Rock Lobster." These songs illustrated that the B-52's' adoration of camp culture wasn't simply affectation -- it was a world view capable of turning out brilliant pop singles and, in turn, influencing mainstream pop culture. It's difficult to imagine the endless kitschy retro fads of the '80s and '90s without the B-52's pointing the way, but The B-52's isn't simply an historic artifact -- it's a hell of a good time.
© Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo

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