New book collects every issue of the Crass zine ‘International Anthem’

The ‘domestic violence issue’ of International Anthem, 1979
This deserves more press than it’s received: a new book collects every issue of International Anthem: A Nihilist Newspaper for the Living, including two never before published. The volume is an official product of “the publishing wing of Crass and beyond,” the venerable Exitstencil Press.

International Anthem was Gee Vaucher’s newspaper, but denying its connection to the band would be a challenge. Its 1978-‘83 run coincided, roughly, with Crass’s (as opposed to, say, Exit‘s), and the Crass logo sometimes appeared on the paper’s cover (see above). Eve Libertine, $ri Hari Nana B.A., Penny Rimbaud, G. Sus (aka Gee Vaucher) and Dave King contributed to its pages.

Gee Vaucher collage from International Anthem #2 (via ArtRabbit)
The book contains scans of the originals (“bad printing, creases, mistakes and all”), reproduced at full size. If it is good to buy quality art books, it is better to buy them directly from the artist. Buddhists call it “accumulating merit,” and they say you want to do a lot of it in this life, so you don’t have to come back as Eric Trump. Below, consume two hours of Crass programming broadcast on Australia’s JJJ Radio in 1987, featuring some Crass texts read in Australian accents and contemporary interviews with Gee and Penny at Dial House.

Help Gee Vaucher collect 20 million hand-drawn stick figures for her World War I project.

Posted by Oliver Hall
08:47 am
‘Semi Detached’ Anarchy: Watch Gee Vaucher’s Crass videos, 1977-1984
11:15 am

Gee Vaucher was a founding member of the anarcho-punk collective that produced Crass. She was responsible for most of the arresting cover art for their albums, although she wasn’t the one who came up with the band’s ingenious logo; Penny Rimbaud’s friend Dave King came up with that one.

Crass was one of the first bands to use bewildering back-projected films and video collages to enhance their stage performances. Vaucher was the woman responsible for those, and watching them today, it’s startling how little they’ve dated since their creation. The anger and the need to fuck with people, that seems very late 1970s, but the fast-cutting use of grainy archival footage seems perfectly contemporary today and indeed would seem vital and relevant at really any point between then and now.

Vaucher’s Crass-related imagery is collected in the volume Crass Art and Other Pre Post-Modernist Monsters.

Semi Detached collects all of Vaucher’s Crass-related videos for the the first seven years of Crass’ output. The full title is Semi Detached: CRASS performance videos 1977-1984.

The first third or so of the hour-long video features “Reality Whitewash,” “Shaved Women: 1979,” “Mother Earth,” “Mother Love” (the opening credits have it as “Smother Love”), and “Bomb Plus Tape (Well Forked—But Not Dead).” Then the rest is dedicated to videos for the entirety of Crass’ 1983 album Yes Sir, I Will.

As we head into the last days of campaigning before the Iowa caucus, enjoy this very different political message…

Previously on Dangerous Minds:
‘Our Wedding’: Crass’s magnificent romance-mag prank
Pranksters make a Crass logo crop circle, oblivious ‘astronomologer’ attempts to interpret it

Posted by Martin Schneider
11:15 am
Merry Crassmas: Anarcho-punk goes Muzak (+ bonus Penny Rimbaud interview)

The charming cover of Merry Crassmas

Click play to hear all of Merry Crassmas!
The end of 1981 likely saw highly influential British anarcho-punk band Crass both energized and exhausted after dropping their third album, the remarkably complex feminist manifesto Penis Envy.

One speculates that the idea for their final release of the year came to the band as a “eureka!” moment. Why not release a 7” novelty record made up of a department-store-style, organ-and-drum-machine medley of their anthemic and obnoxious tunes, including “Big A Little A,” “Punk is Dead,” “Big Hands,” “Contaminational Power” and others? Slap on an innocuous Santa Claus intro and obnoxious outro at the end, pop it into a sleeve with a strange and horrific collage of an Xmas-day family holiday scene by Gee Vaucher, and you’ve got an instant inside-joke punk classic on your hands.

As a horror-day bonus for you Crass-heads, here’s a wide-ranging, as-yet-spotlighted 2007 interview from with your man, drummer Penny Rimbaud…

Part 2  |  Part 3  |  Part 4  |  Part 5  |  Part 6  |  Part 7  |  Part 8 
Previously on Dangerous Minds:
Crass remasters and epic interview
Crass: There is No Authority But Yourself
Music for Crass: Mick Duffield’s Christ the Movie
The unexpected Crass-Beatles Nexus Point

Posted by Ron Nachmann
11:05 am
Crass: There Is No Authority But Yourself

For your weekend viewing pleasure…here’s an exciting find that has yet to materialize on YouTube: Crass: There Is No Authority But Yourself.  Director Alexander Oey‘s hour-long look at the relentlessly uncompromising anarchist punk band came out in ‘06, and features some great, talking head footage of Crass members Steve Ignorant, Penny Rimbaud and Gee Vaucher.

While The Feeding of the 5000 came out way back in ‘78, Rimbaud and Vaucher still remain true to the “Crass ideal.”  They continue to practice a sustainable, anti-corporate lifestyle at Dial House, a “safe haven for those individuals of principle who still live by the old punk slogan ‘Do it yourself.’

I remember a time when the procuring of a new Crass single was a matter of great urgency.  Watch below to find out why.


Previously on Dangerous Minds: The Unexpected Crass-Beatles Nexus Point

Posted by Bradley Novicoff
04:00 pm