Sunday, March 7, 2010
The Sidewalks - Natalie
B. Whoever Said That You Was Cool
THE SIDEWALKS (Milwaukee, WI)
Natalie b/w Whoever Said That You Was Cool
Flying Scooter (FSR-001), 1981
Giving birth to The Shivvers, The Haskels, The Wigs, and many others, Milwaukee was a hot bed of fresh, creative, musical talent in the late 70s. The Sidewalks were no exception. Formed in the summer of '79, they drew motivation from new wave standouts such as Elvis Costello, Nick Lowe, and Joe Jackson, as well as punk groups like The Ramones and The Clash. They also shared a love for British Invasion bands including The Kinks, The Who, and The Stones. Over time, they defined their sound by playing obscure pop covers alongside original songs in the same vein musically, but with socially relevant lyrics.
Though the band persevered for a three year period with several line-up changes and numerous trips to the recording studio, this single remains the only material the band released before their demise. It received local acclaim and airplay, and was even distributed by Bomp, but the band never got the break they needed and eventually gave up. Both sides of this record are pure pop perfection and it's a shame the band was not more successful.
Several years ago, Hyped2Death released an entire retrospective CD of the Sidewalks recorded material, entitled "Ryhthm Kids." A few years later, Italian label Rave Up issued it on LP in a limited run. Most recently, the band released a collection of material themselves called "Here Are The Sidewalks," which is available through CDBaby and Itunes. It's the first time their material has been available as digital downloads. I highly recommend picking it up as the rest of this band's material is exceptional and deserves to be heard.