Posted in 1980's Albums

The Age Of Plastic – The Buggles (1980)

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Island Records ILPS 9585

The Buggles were a British New Wave duo consisting of Trevor Horn (vocals, bass guitar, guitar) and Geoff Downes (keyboards, synthesizers, electric piano, piano, drums, percussion, backing vocals). Best remembered for their 1979 debut single “Video Killed the Radio Star”, a #1 hit on the singles charts of sixteen countries, this songs music video was the first shown on MTV in the U.S.A.

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Island Records ILPS 9585

The album starts with the title track “The Plastic Age,” opening with snippets of telephones, with lyrics about a fast paced life, leading to possible health issues and the desire to stay young at all costs.

“Video Killed the Radio Star,” The second track, refers to technological change and attitudes.

The fast-paced third song, “Kid Dynamo,” is about a futuristic kid exposed to all media and the affects on him.

“I Love You (Miss Robot)” is the album’s fourth track, talks about being on the road and being in the company of a stranger just to satisfy needs and wanting to phone someone they care for, who’s a long way off.

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Side 1

Side 2 opens with “Clean, Clean”, and follows the story of Pogo Johnny who seems to be a fighter,

Next is “Elstree” which is one of favourite tracks. It follows “a failed actor” looking back with regret as he takes up his more regular position behind the scenes. The BBC even get a mention.

Pentax Digital Camera
Side 2

“The slow-tempo ballad “Astroboy (and the Poles of Parade)” is worth a listen, a much lighter vibe, although the keyboards do occasionally border darker realms.

And the album closer “Johnny on the Monorail” has a “pop” atmosphere.

Most of the songs for the album were written during promotion of the Single “Video Killed The Radio Star”.

Three subsequent singles, “The Plastic Age”, “Clean, Clean” and “Elstree”, were all released in 1980, following “Video”, and charted in the UK, reaching #16, #38 and #55 respectively. The album charted in the UK and reached #27 it also made the album charts in Norway, France, Sweden and Canada, and was met with positive critical response. The cover has Trevor Horn on one side and Geoff Downes on the other.

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