Donald's Encyclopedia of Popular Music
Punk band formed in South London '76. Compelling frontwoman Poly Styrene (b Marianne Joan Elliot-Said in Bromley, Kent of a Somali father and a British mother; d 25 April 2011 in East Sussex of cancer, aged 53) wrote ultimate punk anthem 'Oh Bondage Up Yours!' '77 on Virgin, and broke moulds by wearing dental braces and bin-liners on Top Of The Pops. Other band members guitarist Jak 'Airport' Stafford, bassist Paul Dean and drummer Paul 'B.P.' Hurding were somewhat less legendary. Steve Thompson (aka Rudi, Steve Rudi) replaced schoolgirl Lora Logic (b Susan Whitby) on saxophone to tour the USA and on three UK top 30 hits 'The Day The World Turned Day-glo', 'Identity' and 'Germ Free Adolescence', all '78 on EMI; they disbanded after album Germ Free Adolescence when Poly had a religious vision on tour, joined the Hare Krishna movement and was later diagnosed as bipolar.
As Mari Elliot she had studied opera singing and made a pop-reggae single '76, but was then inspired by the Sex Pistols. There was a reunion X-Ray Spex concert in 1991, a second album Conscious Consumer appeared in 2005, and there was another reunion in 2008. Said made a solo album, Generation Indigo, released in March 2011.