Smartarse new-wave Canucks re-release sprightly electro-punk debut
Martha Johnson of the Muffins is one of the new wave’s great lost sex symbols. And this reissue of her group’s only significant UK album banners the injustice of their where-are-they-now status. “Echo Beach” and that’s it, yeah? Well, no. This is plinky-plonky pose-by-numbers art-pop of the kind that Americans thought was just so punk in 1980, but which for Brits was, and still is, the musical equivalent of Space Invaders. But, as with underrated contemporary Stateside outfit The Models, this is more appealing and less risible than America’s attempts at real punk rock. A committed little band trying to impress rather than shock, and doing it rather well.