The Fans – Cars and Explosions / Dangerous Goodbyes

The Fans -Cars and Explosions // Dangerous Goodbyes (Albion Records) 1980. A great slice of Eno-inspired New Wave, the second 7inch from The Fans represents possibly the apex of early Atlanta new-wave. Admittedly a pretty small apex, as Atlanta, like most cities in the South, didn’t exactly have a gigantic music scene back in 1979. Most of the towns had very small, insular scenes with a few key bands that played a couple of different clubs in town. Atlanta was no different and Fans-man Kevin Dunn was regionally a pretty important character. Besides writing great songs for The Fans, he also found time to produce the first B-52s single and early Pylon material. This obviously translates in LDoMoE-parlance to undisputed godhead. I did not know any of this when I first discovered The Fans on the classic ROIR cassette, The Best of America Underground with their song True and instantly became a, er…fan. True is an epic piece of arty-power pop; with its jangly guitar line, warbly harmonies and understated synths, it is classic “new south” material before the term was trademarked. True came out as a single in 1980, a year after Cars and Explosions which finds the band a tad bit more derivative of Eno and early Roxy Music in general. Still, there is so much original going on in this single and I can’t pick which side I like more. Cars and Explosions is certainly more instantly identifiable and sounds at times like it could be a lost excerpt from Here Come The Warm Jets or something. The B-Side though, is darker and even hints at psychedelia at times. It’s kind of a trip to imagine bands as original as The Fans scattered all about the States, releasing material in a pre-internet vacuum. Come to think of it, another band that The Fans remind me of is The Styrenes from Cleveland who not surprisingly were also on The Best of America Underground and were operating on a similar wavelength way up in Cleveland. I am going to have to post that ROIR cassette as it was a real headfuck for me when I picked it up at a Streetside Records 50 Cent cassette bin in the early 1990s (along with a cassette copy of Big Star’s Third?!?). Their loss = my gain.

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2 Responses to The Fans – Cars and Explosions / Dangerous Goodbyes

  1. jonder says:

    First 86, now another great early ATL band… I’m holding my breath for Mercyland!

  2. BH says:

    Oktyabrina is one of my favorite Kevin Dunn songs.

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