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History : 1981


Bid, John, Lester, Andy, Tony (strongman)
"...nngh...has he...oof...gone?..."
>

Conducting a chaotic interview at a friend's Manhattan apartment, the members of The Monochrome Set give the impression of being totally mismatched. Drummer John Haney looks academic and says next to nothing. Bassist Andy Warren could be a real live punk; he confines his remarks to wisecracks. Lanky Lester Square plays affable host, often taking refuge in a hapless pose when talk gets heavy. Singer Bid, clean-cut and low-key, often resorts to put-ons and evasions to avoid revealing himself. When asked by what he means by a certain remark, he says, "Nothing". His ace in the hole is to lower his voice to an inaudible mumble.
Apparently nothing about The Monochrome Set is sacred, including the name, which is a term for a black and white television.
"People sit there watching it, don't clap, that sort of thing," Square says.
"I think it's a terrible name, to be honest," Warren comments.
"I think Andy Warren's a stupid name," Bid retorts.
Lester Square's guitar technique has improved considerably since the band was called The Ectomorphs.
"I always sounded out of tune...I changed guitars several times before I realised you were supposed to change the strings," he recalls.

Neither do Bid's lyrics still rely on the explicitly violent imagery that so often clashed with the jaunty melodies on the early singles.
"Your lyrics tend to turn topics like death, abortion, nuclear annihilation, things like that, into a mambo. Do you think the world would be a better place if it swung like a Cuban brothel?"
Bid: "My God. You disgust me. Never having been to a Cuban brothel, I'd say yes."
"You weren't present at many of the interviews?"
Bid: "I got tired of being asked what we're about. It reminded me of when I was called into the headmaster's study to explain why I'd just hung a lad in the school toilet. I didn't know, you see?"


Tony (pineapple), Bid, Andy, John, Lester

Late 1981:
Bid (guitar, vocals)
Lester Square (guitar, vocals)
Andy Warren (bass, vocals)
Lex Crane (drums)
[Paul Wainman replaced Lester Square for one concert, at the Venue, London, on 24/11/81]