SHAPES, THE: Songs for Sensible People: CD

The Shapes are another criminally obscure band hailing from England who apparently left a lasting enough impression that someone cared about, as well as remembered, them so that this compendium of their recorded output could see the light of day, and the punk world is a much better place as a result. One of the architects of what later became “punk pathetique” (think Toy Dolls, Splodgenessabounds and the like), they married to some very silly subject matter (how silly? How do “Jennifer the Conifer,” which is a love song to a tree, or “{I Saw} Batman {in the Laundrette}” strike you?) to the punk template and came up with catchy songs that weren’t afraid to be just as flat-out funny as sound pissed off. Their “Wot’s For Lunch, Mum (Not Beans Again!)” is a bonafide classic and its inclusion here is more than enough reason to pick this up and provide it with a properly reverential spot in the ol’ collection. One more thing: the liner notes are a fuckin’ riot: “The pressure of drink, women, and rock‘n’roll debauchery totally failing to manifest in their lives began to affect the band badly….Dave began wearing a curly wig and false mustache, claiming that he was really Carlos Santana and that, therefore, he should get double helpings of ‘eggs, beans and chips’ when the band stopped off for a nosh…. Brian demanded that his knees be removed so that he could have the front of his legs paved. It was all getting too much….”

 –jimmy (Overground)