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The late ’80s and early ’90s saw a strange trend of UK power-pop bands fronted by blond bombshells:Â Transvision Vamp, the Primitives, and one of the more criminally ignored, the Darling Buds.Â Fronted by drop-dead knockout Andrea Lewis, the Darling Buds drew upon influences from Blondie to the Smiths and packed them all into manic, three-minutes-or-under, hook-filled gems.Â It was dangerous to drive to their debut Pop Said – you were sure to get ticketed for speeding.
MTV and Modern Rock radio made a minor sensation of their debut single, “Let’s Go Round There,” (download) with its vague similarity to the Manchester sound recently made popular by the Stone Roses and Happy Mondays.Â The Buds were much more accessible, however, and if they had held out a few more years, they would have definitely been swept up by the alternative nation movement ushered in by Nirvana.
The freewheeling fun continued with the second single, “Burst,” (download) which barrels through the speakers like an ice cream truck with the brakes cut.Â Unfortunately, MTV and radio didn’t shine much to this single, and I’d never seen the video until the magic of YouTube:
The Darling Buds toned down the velocity a bit for their second album, Crawdaddy, as their sound matured.Â The Buds were really out of luck when they released their third album in 1992, just a few weeks before the latest from Madonna.Â Why did that matter?Â Both albums were named Erotica.Â Frustrated by lack of success, the band called it a day soon after that, but I definitely plan to feature both of their ’90s albums on future installments of Lost in the ’90s.
“Let’s Go Round There” peaked at #27 on the Billboard Modern Rock Chart in 1989.
Get Darling Buds music at amazon or on