Rock Biz Pix
Studio performance/Special effects/Animation
Chelsea Girl (4:33)
A late seventies classic with all the thrills.
We had the sheer white and black backgrounds which were guaranteed to send early VCRs into sheer
colour bleed frenzy before causing the TV to emit smoke. We had the latest split frame technology (presumably borrowed
from a guy who worked at Top Of The Pops) which was pushed to the max. And we even had an animated
Chelsea Girl. We were spoilt.
A nervous Simple Minds, lead by a basin bowled
Jim, clinically strode through the track either playing their instuments
or stood in formation belting out the choruses. Split screen was used to underpin the fact that different
instruments were played at different times, which was obviously quite important. Some shots even featured six
frames of activity, causing information overload in the pre-computer-game generation.
The split frames and sullen shots of the band looking suitably moody were separated
with an animated Chelsea Girl, happily dancing and eating herself to exhaustion. (More Hanna Barbera than
the sixties chic of the sleeve design). It's obvious that Arista
spent a fortune on it.
According to a note in the Universal Archive, the video was recorded on the 11th July 1979. This is probably
incorrect as the single was released the previous month.
Unfortunately this video is still only available as copies through collectors' circles as Virgin apparently 'forgot' to
include it on the Seen The Lights DVD compilaion. This was of complete annoyance to the
fans and probably quiet relief to all those who starred in it.