Metal Urbain

  • Metal Urbain
  • Les Hommes Mort (Fr. Celluloid) 1980 
  • L'Age d'Or (Fr. Fan Club) 1985 
  • Metal Boys
  • Tokyo Airport (Fr. Celluloid) 1979 

Shouted vocals (in French), distorted slash’n’twang punk guitars, ticking percussion — that’s what characterizes Metal Urbain, fiery young Gauls who were France’s most extreme “progressive” punks at the time. This is harsh and forbidding music, but the group’s ultimate place in history will be assured more than anything by their having cut, in 1978, the first single in the extensive Rough Trade catalog.

The Metal Boys were an early splinter of Metal Urbain: they modify the formula to include more (fragmentary) English lyrics and electronic processing. The overall effect sounds considered and industrial — if just as intimidating — in its approach to the texturing of noise.

[Jim Green]