I designed the logo to look vaguely Suicide-meets-East Blok. It was drawn by hand at home, no Photoshop back then. It was classic branding.

I didn’t know it at the time, there being no Google back on a Sinclair computer, that a couple of other organizations had a similar name and logo. "Are you worried” asks a Belgium journalist when I'm staying there some years later “that a left wing terrorist gang has recently bombed a supermarket ...that they might think ill of you, especially as Sputnik seems so... capitalist!” The terrorist gang’s logo was the same except for “CCC” through the star. I remember thinking “oh shit”, but it’s all part of the magic isn't it? Where you mix up cultures, beliefs and Rock and Roll? Showbiz and terror makes for a great story but yes, for the record we were scared for a moment, and there were a few moments like that. There was also a motorcycle gang in the Phillipines called Sigue Sigue Sputnik who would cut slashes on their arms for each victim they killed. I wondered if they were fans or did they pick up on the same article?

Mick Jones then adds a new, very important part in the story. For my birthday he arrives with an early PRO1 synth. You can link it simply to the 808 drum machine to have a rudimentary sequencer. It could not have come at a better time. I had been getting increasingly frustrated because although we had lots of lyrical ideas, even the title Love Missile FIII, as yet there was no original sound.

"We've got no music and this is hopeless, YOU’VE gotta come up with some ideas for a change ...or its over". This was the ultimatum I threw at a stunned X and Degville

before I flew off to America for a week to see The Clash on tour with the Who, leaving them the Mews keys and a set of lyric ideas and sketches.

The ultimatum worked because when I returned home amazingly, they had recorded three songs ...and they sounded brilliant.

My doubts about the creative abilities of both Neal and Martin were swept away in that moment. The two of them had really come up with it and I felt a massive surge of relief.

It was what I had been praying for, a completely new sound. It was a kind of manic rocking Donna Summer in dub. By chance they had found that you could just plug the 808 drum machine into the Pro 1 and out came the D D DD D D DD sound.

For speed they’d just set the speed control at the 3 ‘o Clock position as it seemed about right. The simple sequencer only remembered 2 patterns of 16 notes so there could only be riffs and choruses.

The songs LOVE MISSILE F1-11, SHE’S MY MAN and TEENAGE THUNDER they recorded that week are the very same versions available on the Jungle album FIRST GENERATION, exactly as X and Deg mixed them that day on the 4 track Portastudio while I was in the USA with Mick. It’s funny because they couldn't get the words F1-11 to rhyme into “Shoot it up” but we called the song that anyway as it was a better title.


The 808 portastudio in Pindock Sitting Room