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Siouxsie and the Banshees, Goth Punk Pioneers

By

Siouxsie and the Banshees, Goth Punk Pioneers

The Scream

Formed:

London, England, September 1976

Original Lineup:

Siouxsie Sioux (Susan Janet Ballion) - vocals
Steven Severin (Steven John Bailey) - bass
Marco Pirroni - guitar
Sid Vicious (John Simon Ritchie) - drums

The First Gig:

Siouxsie and the Banshees had a very chaotic start. The original lineup was thrown together to play a festival in London, where their set was a noisy train wreck.

This first appearance was apparently enough to convince the members that they wanted to be punk musicians, although not necessarily together. Sid Vicious went on to join the Sex Pistols, while Pirroni went on to join Adam and the Ants. Siouxsie and Severin recruited Kenny Morris on guitar and Pete Fenton on drums.

Becoming a Real Band:

Siouxsie and the Banshees began touring heavily, which lead to a record contract with Polydor Records. It was during this time they would record their most punk releases: 1978's The Scream and 1979's Join Hands.

While touring to support Join Hands, Morris and Fenton left the band and were hastily replaced. The next Banshees guitarist was Robert Smith, also of the Cure. Their next drummer was punk veteran Budgie (Peter Clarke), former drummer of the UK punk band The Slits.

Saying Good-Bye to Punk:

The Banshees would continue to cycle through guitarists, but Budgie would become a permanent member of the band, and he and Siouxsie Sioux would end up married in 1991.

Siouxsie and the Banshees would continue to record and play until 1995, but the punk edge was noticeably gone from their sound. The roughness was gone, and the later albums are more new wave and gothic rock than punk.

Essential Recording:

The Scream
While Siouxsie and the Banshees would gain their highest commercial success with club classics off later albums like Peepshow and Superstition, their debut album is definitely the band's one defining punk rock moment. With such punk classics as "Carcass," "Metal Postcard," and one of the greatest Beatles covers ever, their version of "Helter Skelter," Siouxsie and the Banshees proved to the world that punk was in their blood, before they went on to prove their musical talents.

Discography:

The Scream (1978)
Join Hands (1979)
Kaleidoscope (1980)
Juju (1981)
Once Upon A Time: The Singles (1981)
A Kiss In The Dreamhouse (1982)
Nocturne (1983)
Hyaena (1984)
Tinderbox (1986)
Through The Looking Glass (1987)
Peepshow (1988)
The Peel Sessions (1991)
Superstition (1991)
Twice Upon A Time: The Singles (1992)
The Rapture (1995)

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