When Ivan Meets GI Joe

OK! So I am all moody electronica’d out! I needed some punk pop, and there is only one solution: The Clash!

I know it is not exactly seen as their shining moment but I love Sandinista!, a speed-driven funky pop punk fest with a certain unapologetic charm.some

Only Strummer could rock these lyrics and have you pogoing like your life depended on it, sliding into a cold warscape with a killer riff and some hyper beats. It is a comment on world domination and dumb wars and even dumber patriotic rabble rousing. Strummer was the consummate punk politician, as suave and debonair and public pleasing as punk ever got. He sings about Ruskie Bears trying tricks and being the eternal losers whilst America pursues world domination, and Strummer sings about this like it was some sex beat fun fest shite down the Palais on a Friday night in 1980. It is the perfect antidote to niceness.

There is a perfectly respectable Junko Partner, some heavy cool ragga beats right out of London circa the late 70s early 80s, and Strummer’s trademark social commentary. He is stronger when he talks about what he knows – urban disaffection and deprivation.

If you have only ever heard their more famous offerings, it is worth exploring beyond London Calling. There is also a more poppy, less punky Sandinista! covers album called The Sandinista. Fabulously off the wall version of Ivan and GI Joe, which takes the song for a slow country hoe down in a barn, by Jason Ringenberg and Kristi Rose. It is worth giving it a listen just for the amusement factor. Yee Haw, pardners!

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