Los Angeles had the Nerves. Nuneaton, U.K. had The Incredible Kidda Band. The Incredible Kidda Band formed in ‘76 and their first single was in ‘78. Both the Nerves and Kidda were hard-working, slightly-in-the-wrong-place and/or slightly-at-the-wrong-time powerpop bands that were able to conjoin the strut and confidence of glam with the catchiness and stripped-down focus of new wave. They avoid the endless-songs-are-our-thing mistake of the Grateful Dead and weren’t Punk (capital P, in the 1977 sense of the word). The similarities between the two bands are striking. Both were surrounded by fellow bands (on tours, on labels, or management), who became famous or were already famous. Blondie covered the Nerves “Hangin’ on the Telephone” on Parallel Lines. Most people still think it’s a Blondie song. Kidda recorded with a guy who was in the Animals and was Jimi Hendrix’s manager. They supported the Troggs and The Beat. (The English one, not the one that emerged from the dissolution of The Nerves.) Both bands were poised and positioned for a hit on the charts. It never came. It took people thirty, thirty-five years to come around. (That, and their singles selling for around a thousand bucks.) Kidda’s posthumous debut album, Too Much Too Little Too Late, was released in 2000 was a collection of twenty-nine songs—studio and demo recordings, much like The Nerves’ One Way Ticket in 2008 on Alive. I have no idea where these two songs fit into their timeline. I’m just glad that they’re out and are currently available at a reasonable price.
–todd (Last Laugh, lastlaughrecords.us)