Shortly before having got rid of the bloody 2016, another tragic death of a musician has gone almost unnoticed, overwhelmed by our hectic holiday days.
Nick Medlin, aged 57, the bass-player with 1979-82 punk-pop band Manufactured Romance, was fatally murdered during the late hours of Christmas Eve in a seaside resort of the Isle of Wight (according to bbc.com), where he lived with his family.
In late 1978 a bunch of mates who used to hang around in London’s King Roads formed a four-piece band provocatively called 4th Reich, played their first gig supporting the U.K. Subs at The Marquee (as Lost Property) on January 22nd 1979 and gained an appearance in the Julian Temple’s Punk movie “Punk Can Take It”.
In 1980 they become a five piece with Bob Moore on lead guitar, changed their name to Manufactured Romance, signed to Fresh Records (Family Fodder, UK Decay, The Wall, The Dark, Play Dead), released the quite impressive one and only ‘Time Of My Life/Room To Breathe’ 7” single, which breaks into the indie charts, and had a strong punk following in the 1981/82 period.
With a sound that can be compared to X-Ray Spex and Penetration, the band never released their sophomore single, nor an album though, just two unreleased tracks, ‘You’ and ‘Long Distance Love’, for the excellent 1980 UK punk compilation ‘Back-Stage Pass’ along with Angelic Upstarts, Stiff Little Fingers, Cockney Rejects, Slaughter And The Dogs, Anti-Pasti, U.K. Subs etc.
Nick Medlin, ‘a nice and funny bloke’, is a bright example of the many real pioneers and unsung heroes that contributed to build and define the true punk spirit, that not only has changed the face of music and youth culture, but also the way of living and thinking for many people.
An old punk is dead; terribly too soon; we owe him our endless memory and respect.