News Flash: Normal's Electronica Single To Hit U.S.

It's a single nearly 20 years in the offing. On Sept. 23, Mute Records will finally release The Normal's "Warm Leatherette/T.V.O.D" single in the U.S. The sparse, repetitive, robotic deadpan A-side, based on the J.G. Ballard novel, "Crash," is the work of Daniel Miller, who founded the now-legendary Mute label (Depeche Mode, Moby, Erasure, Nick Cave), one of Britain's most successful labels, in order to release his Kraftwerk-inspired synthesizer club classic. Given the current media vogue of electronic music, however, the single seems as fresh now as any number of contemporary bands inspired by the Neu/ Can school of German electronic experimentalism. The Ballard novel, about the eroticism of car crashes, was made into a controversial 1996 film of the same name directed by David Cronenberg (Naked Lunch, Dead Ringers), while Miller's song was later covered by disco freak Grace Jones. The b-side is a frantic, simplistic track that mixes punk attitude with farting dance floor beats, equating television and drugs with the refrain "I don't need a TV screen/ I just stick the aerial/ into my skin/ let the signal run through my veins." -- ATN staff report [Thurs., Sept. 4, 1997, 9 a.m. PST]