Siouxie And The Banshees
Susan Ballion (a.k.a. Siouxsie) and Steven Bailey (a.k.a. Severin/a.k.a. Steve Havoc), along with two other friends including Sid Vicious of the Sex Pistols, played a Punk festival at London's famous 100 Club (apparently still in existence today), including a 20 minute rendition of The Lord's Prayer. Indeed, Siouxie's presentations were always over the top including going on stage topless or in tight vinyl clothes. In 1977 they made their first garage/demo recording, later released as Track Rehearsals 77; their name chosen from a Vincent Price film titled Cry Of The Banshee.
In 1978, they landed a deal with Polydor' and their first album The Scream followed soon after with Jigsaw Feeling, a track within, making the top 10. It got them enough popularity that in 1979 they went on tour outside the country for the first time.
The following year, Join Hands followed with their version of the Lord's Prayer on it. Budgie (drums) joined them after the original other two members suddenly up and left right before a show; the guitar was then taken up by Robert Smith (of The Cure), who would work with them for a long time.
1980 saw Kaleidoscope arrive with two tracks within reaching top 10 for Happy House and Christine. The following year JuJu, the album many consider was the Siouxsie And The Banshees' breakthrough from their Punk roots, and taking of new unique styles that would be the mold until their demise. This year also Siouxsie and Budgie started the Creatures parallel project with the EP Wild Thing.
Shortly after A Kiss In The Dreamhouse (1982) was released their guitarist John McGeogh collapsed and was hospitalized in Madrid, Spain, Robert Smith took over the guitar again for an extended temporary job. Following the subsequent support tour, a break ensued that was used by Siouxsie and Budgie to release their next Creatures album The Feast. The break was also used by Severin to partner with Robert Smith for a side project of their own called The Glove.
In 1983 their rendition of The Beatles' Dear Prudence reached 3 in the UK charts. Later that year, they opened their own label Wonderland', whose first publication would be their video and live album Nocturne.
Their Gothic leanings were now taking control in early 1984. But Robert Smith left to work with his act The Cure, a band that would see it's own success as the 1980s grew on. Hyaena (1984) would follow, the last for Smith who would not be seen with them again until 1987. Indeed, the album is considered one of the band's best featuring classic tracks like Burn the House Down, Swimming Horses, Dazzle and the previously released "Dear Prudence". But the most popular sales wise was the follow-up, Tinderbox (1986), featuring the track Cities In Dust, a track that remains their only representative on the radio.
In early 1987, Through The Looking Glass was released featuring only covers of other bands and singers like Television, Kraftwerk, Bob Dylan and even a Disney and a Billy Holliday song. Peek-A-Boo (1989) followed, while the side-project Creatures released Boomerang. Kiss Them For Me was the hit on their follow-up Superstition (1991) after two-year break. 1992 to 1995 was a quiet time for the act with Siouxsie doing a duet with Morrisey in the single Interlude, and theirFace to Face track would be incorporated into the Batman Returns soundtrack.
It would be 1995 when the whole operation was finally shut down with their final album, Rapture (1995). Many consider this album to be one of their best featuring dark tracks like Rapture, Not Forgotten, and Oh Baby. Their very last effort was the Showgirl's movie soundtrack New Skin and after, with the announcement declaring that the music industry "proceeded to sign anything with a safety-pin that could spit", they got fed up and decided to throw in the towel.
The split lasted for less than a decade, however, for in 2002 they got together for some U.S. gigs; it has yet to be determined if this re-grouping is permanent or not. In the meantime, Siouxsie and Budgie continued on with The Creatures, and Severin released recently the album Visions only available over the Internet.