Category: Chumbawamba

Chumbawumba – Never Mind the Ballots

ARTIST: Chumbawumba                      Chumbaballots

TITLE: Never Mind the Ballots

YEAR RELEASED: 1987

CHART ACTION: #2 UK Indie

SINGLES: None

OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Hahahahah, um…no.

LINEUP: Lou Watts, Harry Hamer, Mavis Dillon, Alice Nutter, Danbert Nobacon, Boff Whalley, Dustan Bruce, Simon Lanzon, Neil Ferguson

WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: Politics and elections!

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: A musical play or anarchist agit-prop opera or whatever you want to call it – Chumbawumba’s second album is all about electoral politics featuring two candidates, the public, and how the two supposedly opposite sided candidates seem to want the same thing in the end

Funny how that’s appropriate now as well.

Musically, this is a much better and more commercial (sounding, commercial sounding, people) record. The band really can play well, and the arrangements are complementary to the lyrics and messages.

The messages, themes, and motifs are radical commentary on the UK’s issues in the late 80’s, but the political messages rather much fit to any political system. Candidates will be about one thing, mainly. That’s power. No matter what they say, that’s what they want.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: They had promo T-shirts in English and French that said “THE VOTE CHANGES NOTHING! THE STRUGGLE CONTINUES!”

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No. This isn’t streaming, but it’s available on You Tube.

 GRADE B+: You probably need to somewhat agree with their politics to really enjoy it, but it’s good.

Chumbawamba – Pictures of Starving Children Sell Records

ARTIST: Chumbawamba                   Chumbastarving

TITLE: Pictures of Starving Children Sell Records

YEAR RELEASED: 1986

CHART ACTION: None

SINGLES: None

OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: Oh, not here, no way.

LINEUP: Harry Hamer, Alice Nutter, Boff Whalley, Mavis Dillon, Lou Watts, Danbert Nobacon, Dunstan Bruce, Simon Lanzon

WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: First record from the anarchist band / collective is a broadside against celebrities and corporate greed, in a very 80’s style.

SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Listening to this album, you can somehow hear how this group of in your face anarchists got a hit single. They do have pop sensibilities and musical chops.

Listening to this now, it’s very dated. The first part slams all of the celebrity benefits and calls out Freddie Mercury (for playing at Sun City), Paul McCartney, the Rolling Stones, David Bowie and Cliff Richard.

For the second side, it takes aim at Unilever and Coca Cola for investing in South Africa and taking advantage of the poor and indigent around the world.

It’s good for a curious listen, but really, not much else unless you want to study the political messages of 80’s anarchy.

NOTES & MINUTIAE: This isn’t streaming, but you can find it on You Tube.

IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: No

GRADE: C+: Definitely of a time and place, just not this one.