Tuesday, 4 December 2007

Chatham, 1979

In his review of the recent Storm Bugs's vinyl compilation Supplementary Benefit in the new Sound Projector magazine, Ed Pinsent writes:

they have rendered unique visions of the psychic underside of England, visions as palpable as the monochromatic photograph (by Ball) on the back cover which celebrates the horrors of suburbia with an enquiring eye."

While I think that "horrors" might be overstating it ("quotidian monochromatic melancholia" might be closer), I think that Pinsent has identified a zeitgeist that resonates in the Storm Bugs tracks and the black and white slides I took as a young art student living in a rented bedroom on a grim housing estate on the edge of Chatham. Here is that photograph and others from the same roll, more or less as they came off the slide scanner, with their speckled patina of decay and age.