Waking Up

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"Whatever happened to all the heroes..." Yeah, one could sing the words to that old song right on top of "Waking Up." By now we all know that Elastica grabbed the unique riff of the Stranglers' 1977 classic second album title track and single "No More Heroes," changed the words a smidgen, and fashioned themselves a U.K. Top 40 hit. But three observations: as the Stranglers are receiving a substantial share of the proceeds, that's fine; having done this, Elastica has focused a lot of positive attention on a great band that has been slagged constantly in the U.K. press for some time, for which Stranglers drummer Jet Black even thanked Elastica in Melody Maker; and it's a great song reconstituted this way...in fact, it sounds like Wire covering the Stranglers, with a sharp female singer. All this said, the A-side is on the underground hit LP Elastica, so this import single is more important for the three non-LP cuts, two OK, one great. The June 1994 John Peel session track "Gloria" is not the famous Them/Van Morrison song, it's a spindly original with jagged post-punk guitar. "Car Wash" is the latest minimal four-track demo Elastica specializes in for B-sides; this short one sounds a little like Devo. The pick is "Brighton Rock," which would have fit in perfectly on the LP, it's so in that style, sort of like "Car" without the sexually suggestive lyrics.

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