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Today's ear X-tacy: X-Ray Spex "Germ Free Adolescence"

Today's ear X-tacy features a classic track or deep-cut from the Alternative era every weekday at 10:10

British punk band X-Ray Spex released their highly acclaimed debut album Germ Free Adolescence in 1978. It contained the UK hit singles "The Day the World Turned Dayglo," "Identity," and the title track "Germ Free Adolescents." The songs are more like punk anthems addressing topics of identity, feminism, environmentalism, consumer society, and punk itself.

The group was fronted by charismatic lead vocalist and songwriter Poly Styrene. Born Marianne Joan Elliott-Said, she commented: “I chose the name Poly Styrene because it’s a lightweight, disposable product. It sounded alright. It was a send-up of being a pop star—plastic, disposable, that’s what pop stars are meant to mean, so therefore I thought I might as well send it up.”

Released months before breaking up, Germ Free Adolescents was the band’s sole album. The title track is today’s earX-tacy.

album artwork

John is the mid-morning host on WFPK. Email John at jtimmons@lpm.org