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“Time to Suck” LP + 7" (Shadoks Music 109)

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Suck (or Fuck, as they had considered naming the band) from South Africa played in-the-red priapic prog for just a few months in the early 70s, reminiscent of Australian drug-rug cromagnons Billy Thorpe and the Aztecs. Naming themselves Suck was no minor matter under the highly repressive regime; even honkies were subject to censorship in those days. Suck’s album, “Time to Suck” has been reissued before on vinyl and CD; as one expects, this release on Shadoks is of high quality and outrageous price. There is only one original on the record, but if you know as much about prog as I do, which is to say zero, you probably won’t mind. That original tune is powerful and catchy (great drummer!). The two other best tunes are King Crimson’s Deleuze et Guattari-ian “21st Century Schizoid Man” and, here on a bonus 1-sided 7", Sab’s “War Pigs,” in a tribal-boogie rendition. Although most cover bands, well, suck, Suck used covers as a kind of ventriloquism, approaching topical issues for South Africa obliquely. Sure, some of the songs are about getting laid, but others, like the two I mentioned, and Grand Funk Railroad’s “Sin’s a Good Man’s Brother,” with the line “We need a revolution,” must be appreciated in context. Heavy, man. Heavy. If you don’t feel like dropping half a bill on this LP, here’s "The Whip," the lone original for download. Now who’s going to reissue Wild Youth and Leopard, the greats of South Africa’s first wave of punk?