Crass: Semi Detached

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.