“Night Shift” by Siouxsie and the Banshees
This song (“Night Shift”) is about one Peter Sutcliffe, who was more infamously known as the Yorkshire Ripper. As such monikers tend to imply, he was a serial killer and more specifically one whose crimes were concentrated in the English city of West Yorkshire. And of course we have come across songs like this before, where the vocalist takes on the role of a murderer or other type of violent criminal and goes about poetically detailing their crimes and mentality. In such cases, there also seems to be a question of why would they go about doing so. But apparently, “Night Shift” itself didn’t generate any type of controversy.
As for the lyrics go, yes, they are quite disturbing, albeit nothing contained therein directly pointing to the fact that they are being relayed from the perspective of an actual serial killer. Instead the vocalist comes off for most part as being sort of a pervert or more to the point a stalker. And in the second verse, it is also implied that he may be a necrophiliac.
Furthermore, it should also be very much noted that in this case, the vocalist is in fact a female. So all things considered, such as Siouxsie warning listeners that “he’ll come to you”, “always dressed in black” and all, this can be taken as a reminder to other women that people with ambitions like those of Sutcliffe actually exist.
Siouxsie and the Banshees
Siouxsie and the Banshees was a band of late 20th century rockers from London. Throughout its two decades of existence, this group went through a plethora of personnel changes. However, there were two constants, namely the lead singer Siouxsie Sioux and bassist Steven Severin.
And when this track was dropped, Sioux and Severin were officially joined by Budgie on the drums and John McGeoch (1955-2004) on guitar.
When was “Night Shift” released?
The band released “Night Shift” as part of their “Juju” album on 6 June 1981.
This track, which was not released as a single, is a product of Polydor Records.
Who wrote “Night Shift”?
It is the aforementioned four individuals – Siouxsie, Steven Severin, Budgie and the late McGeoch – who wrote “Night Shift”. In addition to that, they collectively produced it with Nigel Gray (1947-2016).
Siouxsie and the Banshees’ “Juju” Album
British rock band Siouxsie and the Banshees, released the post-punk album, “Juju” on June 6 of 1981. This album is their fourth studio album.
Recording took place at Surrey Sound studio, a recording studio in Leatherhead, South East England. The said recording studio belonged to British record producer Nigel Gray, a co-producer of the album. Nigel teamed up with Siouxsie and the Banshees to get the album produced.
“Juju” was officially released through a German-British record label, Polydor Records, a subsidiary of Universal Music Group.
The album put up an astonishing commercial performance in the band’s home country, the UK. It peaked at No. 7 on the UK’s OCC and has been certified silver by the BPI there.
Cathi Unsworth of Melody Maker, a weekly British music magazine, was full of praise for the album, describing it as one of Britain’s most influential albums of all time.