The Individuals: A Polygamist In Hell

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Tuesday's Pick

  • Song: "Dancing with My Eighty Wives"
  • Artist: The Individuals
  • CD: Fields/Aquamarine
  • Genre: New Wave
The Individuals 300

The Individuals only stuck around long enough to release a pair of albums in the early '80s, but developed a fervent following. courtesy of The Individuals hide caption

toggle caption courtesy of The Individuals

The Individuals were something like The Replacements, if The Replacements were from Hoboken, N.J., didn't drink so much, and focused on smart, groove-based cerebral rock instead of bratty, punk-influenced alternative rock. The band only stuck around long enough to release a pair of albums — the 1981 EP Aquamarine and the 1982 full-length Fields — but it developed up a fervent East Coast following, and its two works were recently released for the first time as a single CD, Fields/Aquamarine.

Much of the album deals with teenage lust and sex (or, more accurately, teenage lust and a lack of sex), but "Dancing with My Eighty Wives" is a bit more grand and surreal in its ambitions. Over a frantic bassline, sinister new-wave-era guitar licks and a chorus of "ahhhhhhs," the song seems to function as a sort of dream sequence. The narrator has as many spouses as Warren Jeffs, and next to a "green lagoon," the devil is taking turns with each of them on the dance floor. (Or perhaps all of them at once?) Like a dream, the song isn't always clear, but it's a lot more fun at parties than Dante. Or polygamists, for that matter.

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