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Even in the weird, quirky world of new wave and post-punk in the late 70s, the B-52's' eponymous debut stood out as an original. Unabashed kitsch mavens at a time when their peers were either vulgar or stylish, the Athens, Georgia quintet celebrated all the silliest aspects of pre-Beatles pop culture - bad hairdos, sci-fi nightmares, dance crazes, pastels, and anything else that sprung into their minds - to a skewed fusion of pop, surf, avant-garde, amateurish punk, and white funk. On paper, it sounds like a cerebral exercise, but it played like a party. The jerky, angular funk was irresistibly danceable, winning over listeners dubious of Kate Pierson and Cindy Wilson's high-pitched, close harmonies and Fred Schneider's campy, flamboyant vocalizing, pitched halfway between singing and speaking. It's all great fun, but it wouldn't have resonated throughout the years if the group hadn't written such incredibly infectious, memorable tunes as "Planet Claire," "Dance This Mess Around," and, of course, their signature tune, "Rock Lobster."
Martin says: Classic 1979 new wave album from the US quintet, who channeled rock & roll, surf, girl group pop and B-movie kitsch and transplanted the 50s / 60s into the post-punk era. 'Planet Claire', 'Dance This Mess Around', 'Rock Lobster'...