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One year after the death of Suicide’s Alan Vega, and amid a crop of new recordings, bandmate Martin Rev recalls their 1978 Brussels gig that turned into a riot in 23 minutes
‘I’ll never retire, it’s not in my blood. I’ll die dancing. I’ll die right on stage,” Alan Vega, who passed away in his sleep a year ago this week, defiantly told me in 2015. Vega, one half, with Martin Rev, of pioneering electronic proto-punk duo Suicide, may not have died on stage, but came close over the years. The levels of animosity, rage and violence that he faced while performing would have finished off lesser artists decades earlier.
He was right about not retiring, making music right up to his death; IT, a posthumous album, has just been released. The recent single DTM shows that even in his final moments, Vega’s commitment to creating uncompromising throbs of industrially charged electronic noise remained potent, and recalls, too, the often brutal intensity of some of Suicide’s earlier work and live shows.