The imminent release of a Mute compilation of the band's finest moments is a great reason for us to look back at the early days of Suicide. Frontman Alan Vega is unfortunately no longer with us, but we have a highly entertaining interview with multi-instrumentalist Martin Rev, who still winces as he recalls them attracting volleys of missiles from the audience at every gig they played. When they toured the UK with The Clash, Vega narrowly avoided being hit in the head by a flying axe in Glasgow. The extreme reaction Suicide provoked was because they used old keyboards and drum machines rather than guitars, but in doing so they invented a whole new genre of electronic music.
In addition to the cover feature, our other interviews this issue include Thomas Leer, Pepe Deluxé, Tim Hecker and Anna Domino. David Bowie producer Tony Visconti tells us about his association with the Kingston University Stylophone Orchestra, designer Ben Kelly revisits his work on The Haçienda, and Crammed Discs bigwig Marc Hollander discusses his label’s wonderfully eclectic ‘Made To Measure’ series. We’ve also got about a million album reviews, but then you’d expect nothing less from us, wouldn't you?
There's never been another electronic duo quite like Alan Vega and Martin Rev, so we are delighted to be releasing an exclusive Suicide seven-inch to accompany this issue. It's pressed on gorgeous red vinyl too. The A-side is the nagging and dubby 'Ghost Rider', the opening salvo of the NYC group's debut album, which has been heralded as one of the 100 best tracks of the 1970s by both NME and Rolling Stone. Turn the disc over for an edit of an early mix of the chilling 'Frankie Teardrop', with completely different lyrics to the album version. Frankie is now a Vietnam War veteran rather than a factory worker and the result is more intense than ever.