A 1985 press release for The Babysitters began with the line “There’s only one thing you can expect from the Babysitters, and that’s the unexpected.” This certainly holds true: to see what looks like a glam rock band playing DIY punk rock, with their double B side single and socio-political statements sitting comfortably alongside songs about bearded women and rock ‘n’ roll chickens, is quite the revelation.
The Babysitters formed in London in August 1983, though the lineup of the original band included the rhythm section that would go on to join The Marionettes (who, coincidentally, released their debut as a package deal with The Babysitters debut through Heavy Metal Records.) The line up of The Babysitters that would go on to record the album consisted of Buttz (vocals), Stik (drums), Boo (bass) and Jimbo (guitar).
The Babysitters released their double B side single, “Everybody Loves You When Your Dead” and “I Wanna Be On TV” through FM-Revolver Records before then releasing their eponymous debut album, featuring these songs along with ten others, through Heavy Metal Records, describing it in the press release as “self-titled, self-congratulatory, self-satisfying,” and also “Coffee table listening for white collar wimps or hardcore hedonism for punky purists.” Admittedly, their humour was one of the main attractions with the band, but even with this removed the music has an integrity that simply can’t be denied. But then, when the band state that “You shouldn’t be surprised to find Jimbo with a pair of ladies’ knickers on his head,” you can’t help but be glad that they did have the sense of humour they did have: the 80s punk scene was certainly somewhat better for it.
The same press release referred to earlier ended with the line “Don’t be a dummy – suck it and see.” Well, you heard.