RUBELLA BALLET: Never Mind the Day-Glo: CD

Nov 30, 2010

Rubella Ballet were/are one of the longest surviving of the initial cluster of U.K. anarcho-punk groups that spawned Crass, Flux Of Pink Indians, Poison Girls, and all the others who are now T-shirt and patch staples, starting off at roughly the same time as that lot and managing to stick it out in various forms to the present day. While they definitely shared many of the same concerns and lyrical subject matter as their contemporaries, Rubella Ballet set themselves apart by donning day-glo clothing instead of the de rigueur black and opting to tinge their musical racket with pop and what would now be considered “goth” sensibilities. This, the second of a two-part reissue of their recorded output collects the IF and At the End of the Rainbow LPs, 42f and Arctic Flowers EPs, and serves as a one-stop source for what apparently was the band’s most prolific and commercially successful period. The production may be a bit cleaner than on their earlier works, and become more so as the disc goes on, but the songs are no less catchy and edgy, alternating for oddly dark yet danceable tracks with bubbling bass lines to the obligatory punk ravers. Myopic simps looking only for stuff that mirrors the cacophonous caterwauling of later Crass and Flux will be sorely disappointed, but for those with more nuanced tastes, this’ll more than handily deliver the goods.

 –jimmy (

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