There was nothing like Suicide , they were the most fucked up musical duo ever , I used to listen to John Peel when I was a kid on an old radio , I would fall asleep with the radio on , one night I drifted off , Alan Vega’s aaarrrrghhhhhh woke me , I thought the radio was possessed by an evil spirit , that was the first time I heard Frankie Teardrop.
Sonic loved Suicide and indelibly stamped the early embryonic Spacemen with a Suicide influence , at this point in time Suicide were long gone from the landscape of the music scene , the only band around at the time that had a love of Suicide were Sigue Sigue Sputnik who lasted as long as a cheap Chinese firework.
In our lives this strange minimalistic dark metronomic music made sense , it was beguiling and psychedelic , in a lysergic world the regimented pulse and hiss and the woozy dreamlike sounds were a perfect twisted soundtrack for a trip .
‘Me an Marty , we took 50 tabs of acid man , we were tripping for a month .’
I think we were all amazed to be supporting Suicide let alone sitting in the dressing room in the presence of these guy’s who had bent our minds as far as they could go .
Alan took a huge bottle of water and hurled it at the wall , he looked mad , I could see it in his eyes , the bottle exploded and left a large dent in wall.
‘Me an Marty , we took a hundred tabs of acid man , we were tripping for a year.’ Marty never really said much , Alan did most of the talking , or rather barking in that thick punk NYC accent.
Two support slots , the first in Leeds in a tram shed , an area that covered four football pitches , it was a scary environment , like a grey version of the white room in THX 118 , it was a weird gig , the promoter was a skitzoid bully boy who did not book us rather than intimidated us on to his bills , ‘Get down here , you’re on at 7.30 .’ kind of thing , I think we were too scared to ask for money but he gave us the Suicide slots which was for us was making dreams come true .
Suicide were a lot different live than on record , the percussion was a lot harder and the keyboard lines less fluid , Alan was tubby and cantankerous flicking his cigarette butt into the crowd but it still a had that strange aura of intrigue and danger .
That was it as far as Suicide meets Spacemen 3 , last time I spoke to Alan was backstage at a Suicide , Panasonic gig , the show was perhaps a decade later than the Spacemen gigs , about 97 I guess and Alan was skulking about looking like he wanted to go home ‘ Hey Alan , Silver Apples are touring the UK .’
‘Those crazy West coast hippies .’ he replied .
I am kind of glad I never saw the last Suicide gig , I am not surprised it made people shed tears , each time I saw Vega perform he did it with anger and aggression , it was just the way it worked , the first time I saw them was at The Camden Palace , it was such a weird spectacle the two of them and a huge audience.
Perhaps that is how he wanted to be remembered completely fucked but still defiant till the end , who knows but what is for sure Suicide committed suicide at the Barbican UK .