My friend Katherine (Mod Tales) dropped a minor 80s hit on my radar this week by a Seattle band called The Allies. They recorded a track in 1982 called Emma Peel, which was a kind of yearning statement from a lonely character who finds comfort in watching re-runs of The Avengers. As Katherine said, the video is "so 80s," but it's got a charm. Here's the band bio from the All Music Guide by Michael Sutton: "The Allies were one of the first Seattle bands to have a video on MTV. The group won one of MTV's Basement Tapes contests, and the clip for "Emma Peel," a lovelorn homage to Diana Rigg's character on The Avengers TV series, gave the band fleeting national recognition. The Allies were formed in 1979 with Steve Adamek (vocals, rhythm guitar, piano), Dave Kincaid (vocals, lead guitar, bass), and Larry Mason (drums). Kincaid co-wrote "Emma Peel" with songwriter Carl Funk, who would eventually contribute lyrics to Kincaid's future group the Brandos. In 1982, the Allies released their debut LP, Allies, on their own label. The album's power pop and new wave sounds contrasted with Seattle's affection for heavy metal, but the band found an audience within the city's burgeoning underground scene with like-minded acts such as the Cowboys and the Heats. The LP received positive reviews, and when the video for "Emma Peel" appeared on MTV, the group were seen as being on the verge of a commercial breakthrough. However, despite constant gigs and rock-radio airplay for "Emma Peel," the band couldn't land a record label deal and the Allies broke up in 1985. Kincaid then moved to New York, reuniting with Mason in the Brandos. In 1999, Allies was reissued on CD by Haunted Field Music." Spy Vibers can also find the original release out there on cassette and vinyl. Enjoy!
September 18, 2020
ALLIES EMMA PEEL
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