Now, almost there listening to the full next-gen SP performing their first definite landmark, it is time to take a look at the former band members and what they contributed to the band.
When SP demoed their first tape Nothing Ever Changes in early 1988 they consisted of Billy, James and Ron Roesing left from The Marked.
Unfortunately Ron never finished the drums on the demo which ended up in having a drumming-machine done by Billy.
So there is no real recording with Ron left, as far as I know.
Moving on they were soon followed by D’Arcy on the bass and if there's one thing that sticked with SP until the end it was D’Arcy’s unconventional style in playing:
Pausing whenever she feels like it, staying on the same note, playing sth else - and it worked!
I wonder if D’Arcy ever had some ideas for contributions.
After some back and forth with some other local bands they finally got Jimmy and SP should be complete.
With Jimmy on their side they reached another level.
Yes, Jimmy wasn't as used to his style as he is these days but there was something fresh and different to this jazz drummer compared to all the random rock drummers other gen-x bands had.
Jimmy definitely defined the essential SP sound and Billy knew since he wouldn't let anyone replace him on Adore.
Over the years, there were some songs that were co- or even fully written by James.
Most of these couldn't reach the level of Billy's but there are some Iha tunes (Blew Away) that remain to me as true SP classics on par with songs like 1979.
Another important point was James' guitar playing style which was totally different to Billy's; much more bluesy and sludgy (best showcased on MCIS (the solo on Love), Pisces and the Vieuphoria).
I think it was a good contrast that also helped to shape SP and it's a shame that there are hardly any lines of James on SD and the later albums.
When D’Arcy was replaced by Melissa she was on a technically higher level and maybe Billy should have got her back instead of Ginger.
Yes, here we are now in the reunion years.
That's the SP line-up I have seen live: BC/JC with Ginger and Jeff.
As pale and replaceable as Ginger was, Jeff was the best replacement for James they could have found; what a brilliant live guitarist.
He should have played on Zeitgeist.
One can see that I liked the Zeit-era line-up with strong musicians like Jimmy and Jeff.
When Jimmy left I felt like SP finally reached the bottom of the barrel.
Along came that boy Mike and I thought Billy was spoofing the band.
On TBK nothing of Mike's playing had any effect to me but I like his performances live.
Entering Nichole was also a good thing and when I heared her singing on Lightning Strikes it finally convinced me.
Uff, that was long slipslop.
Forming current SP was a long road and right now I'm curious how well next-gen SP really work on the new album.
When the miracle of the internet hit my home on the 2000s I finally could get the rest of the SP discography step by step.
The first new purchase was Gish which was as pleasant as Pisces.
I instantly loved it and my love for SP grew and grew.
The first letdown was MACHINA to me when I got back to my good old record store and finally bought it.
I couldn't get into it and I felt tunes like Sacred&Profane and Try, Try, Try were some of the worst Billy ever did - time would proof me wrong.
Back then it all felt so pretentious and overdone to me and I was rather used to simplicity of a Gish.
It would take me some years and the download of MACHINA II to finally find out how rich the whole story really was.
SD, on the other hand, is another story.
I used to get the Vieuphoria before it, so that was the first incarnation of most SD songs for me except Disarm, Soma and Geek USA which also were on the "Gold 2000" bootleg.
I loved the performances with all the edges and anger and when I would buy myself SD as the last of the original SP albums except Judas O (I had even gotten Aeroplane before) it was the sleeping pill of the century.
IF SD WOULD HAVE BEEN MY FIRST SP ALBUM I MAYBE WOULD NEVER HAVE LOVED THEM THAT MUCH!
The recordings lacked everything the performances had and the worst of all was the soapy Nevermind pop rock production.
Billy's singing seemed fake and technically reworked and I couldn't figure out James and D’Arcy.
I was happy to finally receive Rotten Apples/Judas O from my school's music teacher who knew that I was into SP.
Judas O was another compilation that I liked, especially all the Adore era outtakes.
But apart from some odd moments SP became my life and set me on an arrogant course ignoring EVERYTHING else as b-rate music for years.
Billy was my god and I was his priest.
And then the letdowns started with Billy forming another band in 2002 and I almost lost it...
...to be continued tomorrow night...