As the introduction of their website goes, this is "machine music for modern lovers". This month's addition to our Vintage Tracks Hall of Fame is "Dirty", the 1984 debut single from Hard Corps, a band that, unsurprising, very few people know about, given that they only released a handful of singles before they disappear in record company hell sometime in 1988.
Hard Corps were formed in 1983 in Brixton, London, when Hugh Ashton, Rob Doran and Clive Pierce met French vocalist Regine Fetet. The first fruit of their collaboration was the astonishing "Dirty", simply put, one of the finest electro tracks ever committed to wax. The punishing, Kraftwerk-influenced, machine beats violently slash through the fractured electropop melody, cutting it to pieces and reassembling it into an electropunk monster that obeys only to the sound of Regine's dominatrix voice. The feral intensity and sexual innuendo of "Dirty" was never recaptured in subsequent singles but the blueprint for the latter day electroclash sound was perfectly formed there and then, and, frankly, I'd be very surprised if, say, Crystal Castles have never heard of this track.
My white label 12" copy of "Dirty" is another one of my prized vinyl possessions that give the inspiration for this series of posts. Although I would imagine that it could prove quite difficult to obtain this single today, luckily there is another way to find Hard Corps music. As I found out at the band's MySpace page, the 1990 compilation "Metal & Flesh" recently became available for download and it consists of the majority of their recorded output, including "Dirty" and its more mellow, less dirty but equally sexy B-side "Respirer".
Here's the video for "Dirty" with footage from a live performance at the Fridge Brixton:
Hard Corps - Dirty