Early Australian goth band, fronted by Nick Cave. Originally known as The Boys Next Door, but changed their name after their 1980 album The Birthday Party. Nick and some of this band went on to form Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds. Nick has worked with many artists, including Lydia Lunch, Iggy Pop, and others.

The Birthday Party is also an intensely pyschologically claustrophobic play by Harold Pinter. It tells the story of 2 men, Goldberg - 50, Jewish and in control of McCann- 30 and Irish, who arrive at a deserted boarding house and mentally break down a third visitor- Stanley, who's been there for a long, but undisclosed period of time. The boarding house is run by Meg, who feels motherly towards Stan , and Petey , who puts up with her incessant jabbering. Eventually they break Stanley and take him away in a van.

Pinter's style is such that you are left to fill in for yourself much of what is referred to, and it's something that you can draw what you like from really, (although I have my own ideas, of course). The dialogue feels awkward and uncomfortable very quickly, and gets quite disturbing in parts, and the contrast between the two sinister men and the babbling Meg really grates. Much of the play seems to be about repercussions of the men's pasts, but these we are never filled in on.

The Birthday Party existed from 1977-1983, and as aforementioned they originally began as The Boys Next Door. The name change came when they released the album entitled The Birthday Party and relocated to London from Melbourne.

They were these really arty post-punks who made this really sick and disturbing music. Once described to me as "Music for the strip club in Hell." And I think that's pretty accurate. Guitars sound wiry and screech all over the place. Drums pound more than they keep a beat. The basslines all sound vaguely... sleazy. And the vocals, care of the wonderful Nick Cave are howled, screamed, shouted, and moaned like only a heroin addict can do.

The members, incidentally, were: Rowland S. Howard (guitar), Tracy Pew (bass), Nick Cave (vocals), Mick Harvey (piano and guitar, primarily, but plays all sorts of funky stuff all over the crazy place), and Phill Calvert (drums).

They released three legitimate albums:

Also available are a few live albums, including a John Peel sessions disc, and a couple of compilations. The ironically titled Hits contains some of the group's best known songs. Hee-Haw is a compilation of that EP, The Birthday Party (album), and some assorted B-sides. Mutiny/The Bad Seed is a compilation of the last two Birthday Party EPs.

An interesting thing about Tracy Pew is that he always dressed up like a cowboy and is rumored to have died of an heroin overdose. The official reason for death, though, is cited as an epileptic fit he suffered in his hotel room.

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