Flexibition #35: Plastics x2


A double whammy of flexi’s from Japanese band Plastics this week courtesy of Steve Cook who gifted me these from his excellent collection before heading for the sunny climbs of LA in a few weeks time. It’s not often you see a full colour ‘picture disc’ flexi but that’s one right there (pressed more than a little off-centre it must be said). Given away free only with UK copies of their 1981 album, Welcome Back, they cover The Monkees with a bizarre bontempi version of ‘Last Train To Clarksville’. As with the first track on the disc, ‘Paté’, the band come on like an electropop ‘Rock Lobster’-era B-52s with a bouncy, slightly hysterical style that relies on a minimal drum machine to propel them along. Here’s a live version with the top lyric, “Chinese ping pong big pink tits”.

Flex35_PlasticsLP cover

Flex35_PlasticsGolddiscThe gold ‘Diamond Head / Peace’ flexi was given away free to customers at record shops like Our Price in 1981 to help promote their Welcome Back album, in the same manner as the Joy Division and Durutti Column flexi’s I featured last week. In the early 80’s music papers, journalists like Tony Mitchell in Sounds were pushing Japanese techno pop as a new fad and record labels were clamouring to sign and promote these acts for a moment off the success of bands like Yellow Magic Orchestra. Plastics fitted the bill although were far from serious or sombre, ‘Diamond Head’ sounding not far off Piero Umiliani‘s ‘Mahna Mahna’, made famous by the Muppets meeting Devo.


Another Japanese band, Spoozy’s, covered ‘Diamond Head’ on a Plastics tribute album in the late 90s and made it into a fantastic surf rock tune.

One thought on “Flexibition #35: Plastics x2

  1. Hi
    I had the diamond head gold Flexi-disc given to me by an older school friend who used to make me mix tapes of blondie, crass, anti past and the like. So I too was a punk…
    Can you tell me the lyrics to diamond head. Listened to it over and over when I was a kid and never knew what it was about. The but I loved the sound and the energy. None of the usual lyric sites can help. I long ago lost my Flexi-disc and the you tube clip is no more enlightening. May be in Japanese for all I can tell. Sound like a fight.
    Any insights into this track?

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