Poly Styrene (real name Marianne Elliott), the distinctive and irrepressible lead singer of legendary British punk band X-Ray Spex, passed away Monday at 53 after a brief battle with breast cancer. Ironically, her first solo album - after a decades-long voluntary absence from music - comes out in the U.S. today.
I have waxed rhapsodic about the glories of Merry Clayton's voice break in "Gimme Shelter." But my second favorite female voice break in pop music history comes at the end of this phrase: "Some people think little girls should be seen and not heard. But I think Oh Bondage Up Yours! One, two, three, FOUR!"
Oh NOOOOO!!! Say it aint so. Not another British Alternative rock icon. First the Slits, than Broadcast now one of the all time greats. And unlike the dime a dozen thick accented British neo soulgirl commercial crap of today these girls really did break new ground for other talented female fronted acts from punk to twee to shoegaze/dreampop and triphop. Can't believe it. What a loss :-(