Wreckers of Civilisation

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Wreckers of Civilisation
The Story of COUM Transmissions & Throbbing Gristle

23 x 17 cm | 6.5 x 9 in
110 ills | 256 pages
Paperback

Editor Simon Ford

Buy now, book available July 2017

''These people are the wreckers of civilisation'', exclaimed the Conservative Member of Parliament Nicholas Fairbairn in 1976. His outburst was meant to describe four artists and musicians: Genesis P-Orridge, Cosey Fanni Tutti, Peter Christopherson and Chris Carter—members of the seminal band Throbbing Gristle.

Throbbing Gristle are widely lauded as the band that invented industrial music, and their influence can be observed across today's musical landscape: from house and techno to industrial death metal. Wherever experimental electronic music is being made, Throbbing Gristle's influence can be felt. 

From the foreword by Jon Savage: ''Wreckers of Civilisation recalls a time which, despite volumes of print, remains occluded, obdurate, even intimidating: that moment before the conservative reconstruction. To be awake in London in the late 1970s was to be plunged into turmoil: externally manifest in riot, internally within various forms of damage and depression and, if one felt brave or driven, extreme aesthetics. Throbbing Gristle's work marks the furthest reaches of that impulse: even more so than punk, they plunged into a technological and personal examination of the dark side—the forbidden, the taboo, the dystopian future on the doorstep. Today this might seem like science fiction or deliberate shock tactics, but then it seemed like reportage, front line dispatches from a convulsed country.''

The book coincides with Hull—the city in northern England from which Throbbing Gristle hail—being named UK City of Culture. For perhaps the first time, the eyes of the world will be trained not just on Hull, but on its most controversial cultural provocateurs.