Phil ‘n’ the Blanks

When one of my blog readers left some real cool comments on my From Carbondale to Daejeon posting the other day, it got me thinking about SIU and the early 80s again as well as music—more specifically, some bands that I liked back then, but whose songs I do not have on any CD or any audio files. 

And then, this got me thinking about either those songs in my head (at least the ones that I remember well) of some of the bands I liked back then and the memories that have remained over the years or the songs that I don’t remember but still remember the band. 

Phil ‘n’ the Blanks – “Auto-sex” b/w “PRL-853” 

I never had the chance to see Phil n’ the Blanks in concert, but I first heard of the Chicago band in late 1980 and bought their single on Pink records at Wax Trax in Chicago (I think one of my friends down at SIU told me about the band). 

What I remember most about that single and especially “Auto-sex” was how much it rocked. They kind of reminded me a little of The B-52’s (a comparison I am sure wouldn’t sit too well with the band) but the band had some catchy lyrics—a lyrical sensibility—fused with a driving sound that pretty much epitomized what the New Wave sound was all about.  

It’s too bad that I never had the chance to see bands like Phil ‘n’ the Blanks when Chris and I were hanging out in 1981 and going to Chicago when we had the chance. I would have really liked to have seen this band and other bands when they were playing in Chicago at venues like Tuts or the Smart Bar back in the early 80s.  

I am not even sure if I still have their 45 either. I am afraid it also went up in smoke with the rest of the record collection LJ had been holding on for me.