Melody Maker (4.13.96)
Split in the Dreamhouse
Siouxsie & the Banshees have disbanded after a career spanning 20 years, the same week that the Sex Pistols have announced the support acts for their london Finsbury Park show on 23rd June.
The Banshees, who stress that the split which was entirely amicable, have cited nostalgia surrounding the Pistol's reunion as a major factor in their decision.
They announced the split in a press statement last week, headed "20 Minutes into 20 Years," and ironically included a namecheck for their original drummer Sid Vicious.
The statement reads
"As the 'music industry' prepares to relive the heady days of 'punk' when confusing the opportunists with the protagonists it prodeeded to sign anything with a safety pin that could spit, Siouxsie and the Banshees would like to say thank you and goodbye.
To our loyal fans and friends for their immitigable support.
To Polydor Records for an amicable split after 18 years.
And to the musicians for their indelible spirit: Martin McCarrick, Knox Chandler, Jon Klein, John Carruthers, Robert Smith, John McGeoch, John McKay, Kenny Morris, Peter Fenton, Marco Pirroni and Sid Vicious.
1996: Siouxsie and Budgie begin new recordings as The Creatures. Steven Severin has just completed new material for the soundtrack, 'Visions of Ecstasy.'
Siouxsie and the Banshees, 1976-1996, RIP."
Siouxsie told the Maker this week, "I'm sure there's going to be lots of people with flagging careers feeling that now they can be vindicated in saying 'We're here, we've always been here!' but the band has never hung on to being part of a movement, and certainly we've been nothing to do with nostalgia."
"We felt that we were treading water in the way that people perceived us. I think they always linked us with a nostaglic era. It's a shame that that era has gone, but it has, and it's become a very corporate, big business, blood sucking thing."
"We don't feel the inclination to compete in this arena."
"I don't want to sound bitter, I'm not. It's not as if anyone has died. I just think it's the most dignified thing to do, for the idea of the band, and the spirit in which it started, getting up there without even owning a set of guitar strings, let alone an instrument. We've had a fantastic journey."
Siouxsie and drummer Budgie are working on a new album as The Creatures, in the guise they've recorded from time to time since 1981.
Siouxsie says it should be out this year "hopefully by the time the leaves fall."
Bassist Steven Severin, meanwhile, is planning to release an instrumental album based on the soundtrack for the very controversial "Visions of Ecstacy" film. The film has been banned in Britain for years, but the ban is currently being challenged in the European courts.
"I did an 18-minute soundtrack seven years ago," said Severin. "The film is about St. Theresa having this fantasy of snogging Christ. It's gone all the way to the European Court of Human Rights. We're waiting for the judgement on that, and if it gets reversed, then hopefully the film can get released in Britain. But I was asked to turn that 18 minutes into a complete album, based on the same themes. That will be released, regardless of what happens to the film."
Asked about his future plans, Severin said, "I've got a few collaborations planned that I can't really talk about yet, but there'll be no rock or pop involved. I want to get as far away from the rock circus as possible for a while."