NME, May 3rd 1986, "Workforce/Biting Tongues, Manchester Boardwalk Saturday Club"
WORKFORCE BITING TONGUES
IN THE foreground, three short-back-and-sides are doing the jerk. In the background Workforce's lead singer, lit from below like Bela Lugosi, is getting into his stride, hands clamped to the microphone, veins standing out on his forehead.
Made up of elements/ingredients from Sheffield notables like The Box, Clock OVA and the unavoidable Cabs, we find Britain's industrial heritage securely locked onto a dark but funky future. Vibrato-ed tenor vocals hang somewhere between being unwillingly soulful and self-consciously emotionless. Fast plucky bass lines charge tunes like 'This Is The One' and 'Say It Again' with repetitious, danceable choruses. The drummer seems superfluous in the face of the amount of taped rhythm on hand to kick each song into action.
It was enthusiasm, though, which greeted Biting Tongues earlier on. In their latest guise, they're booming, back-beating and almost bestial in their newly discovered dance capability. They now revel in being able to control their jagged edges with a sense of purpose.