Review Revue: That Petrol Emotion – V2


It seems the thing people at KCMU most wanted to talk about regarding this 12″ single by the Northern Irish band (with an American singer) That Petrol Emotion was the graphic statement on the back of the record regarding the strip searching of female prisoners at Armagh Prison in Northern Ireland. I think there are cases to be made on both sides of whether this is a worthwhile thing to do with the back of one’s record, but it is quite clear that making that statement will tend to get people paying more attention to what’s printed on your record (and how pretentious it might or might not be) than the musical contents thereof. Which, if you feel strongly enough about something, is probably just fine with you. I guess I would assume, if you’re a band from Northern Ireland in the ’80s, you’re gonna have some stuff to get off your chest, and that’s okay by me.

Oh, and I’m probably the last person in Seattle to put this together, but it turns out the below-mentioned Steve Mack, singer of That Petrol Emotion, is currently holding down vocal duties with Seattle rockers Stag. Small world!

“[illegible] Steve Mack (vocals) joins the Undertones and this is what happens. Cool.”

“Let me say a few things. (1) I think it’s fucking pretentious of them to market political views as they do. Some bands never get out of ‘political puberty.’ I bet they think they’re pretty deep. (2) Pretty good stuff considering the times. You can’t go wrong playing this but I remain untouched.”

“I like this. Gosh, it’s swell. But the stuff on the back I feel is not appropriate or something. Hell I dunno.”

“cf ‘Armagh‘ on Playing with a Different Sex by the Au Pairs. I know it’s a red dot, but then, life is that way at times, you know. (But don’t tell anyone else…)”

“What do you fuckers know what’s appropriate? Ever been strip searched? Bet you’ve [illegible]”

“The statement on the back of this record will not make any difference whatsoever on whether anyone’s ever been searched. OK. Action instead of empty statements.”

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