Get In Touch,
Publishing Inquiries

45 at 33: The Primitives’ Crash

In the good-old-bad-old-1980s, Coventry indie miscreants The Primitives received valuable publicity when Morrissey was photographed wearing one of the band‘s tour t-shirts, which back then was a help rather than the hindrance it‘d be today.

Anyway, their debut album Lovely lived up to its name in part, but especially because of its opening track and first single, replete with an intro that retools the opening chords of Love‘s lush Alone Again Or.

Crash is a pretty power-pop confection. Looking like a pound shop Debbie Harry, Tracy Tracy’s fizzy, spritely vocals glide beautifully above the chugging guitars and locomotive drums. The chorus, with its “na-na-na-na-na-na / slow down” backing vocals, is a melodic earworm of insidious virulence.

It’s almost impossible to avoid getting it stuck in your head.

This isn’t quite the little red Corvette going much too fast in the Prince 45, but The Primitives certainly dip their toes in the same metaphoric territory, although Crash could have a broader variety of meanings. Musically it’s like a car barreling down the highway, mimicking the motion suggested in the chorus, with the sudden snarl guitar at the beginning suggesting the crash itself.

Despite the sharply worded warning in the lyrics, the song is a breezy nugget of glimmery perfection. Crash is also compact at only two-and-a-half minutes, but its brevity only adds to its impact, and with the aid of a prescient 10″ autographed edition reached No. 5 in the UK singles chart of mid March 1988, and third place on the Billboard Modern Rock chart in the States.

Steve Pafford

Liked it? Take a second to support Steve Pafford on Patreon!
Become a patron at Patreon!

We use cookies to give you the best experience. Cookie Policy