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SPERMA- Züri Punx, c/w Sinnlos 7″ (Another Swiss Label, Switzerland, 1980)

sperma_front.jpgsperma_back.jpgTime for some Mongo Rock!
SPERMA were one of the best known Punk bands from Zürich, the biggest city of Switzerland. As the majority of its contemporaries, SPERMA articulated a big deal of discontent with living here. In fact, looking back, it’s quite drastic how the whole socio-political climate has changed over the past 30 years. I remember how much shit you’d get from cops and “bürgis” (regular citizens) occasionally. A very rich city like Zürich, internationally known for banks and luxury of all sorts, always reacted tough when minorities and subcultures acted too loud. I tried to give a short sketch of the situation when I had posted TNT, so go there to read a little more about how it used to be.
Nowadays things are completely different. Like in all western countries, former “subcultures” have turned into one gigantic pool of wealth. In the early 90s, when “Techno” got big and bigger, it was almost immediately integrated into city life where the annual “Streetparade” (a monstrous and distasteful show of tits, ass and bad bad music) plays an important economic and socio-integrative role since over 15 years now.
I used to laugh my ass off about SPERMA, I remember oh too well. “Das sind die härte Züri Punx” (“These are the tough Zurich Punx”) they sing, and “E Wuche lang händs jezz gschafft, für andri Lüüt dä Dräck gmacht, doch jezz händ sie gnueg, im Ranze händs a grausami Wuet” (“They laboured during the week, doing dirty work for others, but now it’s enough, they’re fucking angry”). So what do they now, the tough punkers, you ask? “Hüt zabig isch es Konzert, für eimal isch die Langwiil wäg” (“There’s a concert tonight and boredom’s gone for a moment”). I found that so damn funny – working a shit job during the week and then going to a gig on the weekends to let off some steam. To me, that was Punk at this time: Just a bunch of fucking escapist losers gathering and acting cool. And so was the music: A harmless Geschrummel, untalented and wimpy. And in what language are they singing, you might ask: It’s in swiss german, a spoken-only language which actually consists of many different dialects.

So many years laters and not being under pressure of creating something new anymore, I see things differently. The lyrics and the music reflect a certain point in time and are maybe much much more honest in their cuddly naivety than if the tough Züri Punx had sung about a bloody revolution. It was all a game, basically. The protagonists are well saturated today, you can hang out everywhere in the city today, if you want to, and “youth” (as a social and cultural code) is basically omnipresent. I’m still unsure what exactly it was, that changed western societies so much (and whether the change really is so drastic), but I’m quite sure, Punk (and Metal, for that) played its role in these processes. The price, however, is, that subcultures have vanished totally. Now is that a bad thing? Would you, say you were no older than 30, regret the change?
This 7″ originally was released in late 1979, with a different sleeve and b-side song (“Bombs”, a song with english lyrics). This version here is a lot better though, cause “Sinnlos” not only has more lyrical glory (hillarious lyrics!) but is also musically superior. The band also had a very rare 12″ which is actually just as great as this is and a pretty weak third 7″.

Züri Punx.mp3