Sunday, September 16, 2007
Logo #46: Icons of Filth
Led by founder Andrew "Stiggy Smeg" Sewell (August 22, 1962 - October 23, 2004), Icons of Filth were a deeply, righteously angry "anarcho-punk" group of political activists that began life in 1979 as Mock Death. Real death came for Sewell in the form of a heart attack during the early hours of Saturday October 23 after an Icons of Filth action in Hackney, London. It effectively ended the band, but not before two benefit concerts for Sewell's family in London and Los Angeles (where was I!). At least he didn't go out like Alan "Nidge" Miller (January 23, 1958 - February 10, 2007), the lead singer of Blitz - run over by a car as he crossed a road in Texas, MySpace page forever frozen in time. Icons of Filth's logo hints at a biting disdain for the symbols that fueled punk rock in those days when everyone was trying to get a handle on how to exploit the form. The star, the anarchy symbol, and peace sign - all of which offered no substantive, concrete solutions but were merely fetishized as commodities (the belt buckle, the T-shirt, the badge) and remain so today. And the recursive perfidy of leftism is that, were this logo changed to contain the "filthy icons" of Judaism or Islam or Christianity, the band would be pilloried for "intolerance" instead of their apparent desire to escape the symbol as an unthinking magog ruling over countless lives ignorant of their myriad meanings. Designed by the shadowy Squeal in 1983, the logo originally had a... longer arm of the law with... the truncheon... oppressing... what the State perceives as... filthy icons. Okay, never mind - it's a comment on the Good Guys vs. The Man. Peace signs and anarchy symbols for everyone!