Lunatic Fringe is a song by an 1980s rock group called Red Rider. The song seems to be a reference to militant extremists. It makes reference to the Final Solution at one point. Furthermore, it has some interesting synthesizer parts and a police siren. Oh, and the last few measures has a really awesome extra beat in there that makes the whole song.

I tend to dislike the lyrics, however, because I strongly suspect that they're referring to people like me (conservatives who don't hate anyone and don't like violence or cruelty but tend to get branded as "Nazis" for some reason anyway; but that's another node).

Lumber Cartel = L = lurker

lunatic fringe n.

[IBM] Customers who can be relied upon to accept release 1 versions of software. Compare heatseeker.

--The Jargon File version 4.3.1, ed. ESR, autonoded by rescdsk.

The brooding classic rock staple Lunatic Fringe was the first track on Red Rider's 1981 album As Far As Siam. In 1984, the song was featured on the weekly television series Miami Vice in episode 15 Smugglers Blues and the song was quickly propelled up the music charts. The song stayed number one on the Billboard Top 40 for six weeks and the album went platinum in near record time. Later in 1985, the film Vision Quest also featured this haunting song as a climatic theme and the song was re-released on the soundtrack album. Unfortunately for Red Rider, they never found much success in the United States after this song and the group became a one hit wonder band.

The performers from Red Rider included:

Rob Baker: Drums, Harmonica
Peter Boynton: Piano, Synthesizers, Organ, Vocals.
Tom Cochrane: Lead Vocals, Rhythm, Guitar.
Ken Greer: Electric, Steel, and Six String Guitars, Piano, Organ.
Jeff Jones: Bass Guitar, Background Vocals.

Additional synthesizers were provided by Peter Wolf.

Sample lyrics:

Lunatic Fringe
I know you're out there
You're in hiding
©1981 Tom Cochrane
Lunatic Fringe was a module for After Dark, the screen saver for the Macintosh, before the screen saver was built-in to MacOS. It was notable because it was actually a playable game, and a pretty good one. You played with the keyboard, but if you accidentally bumped the mouse while playing, it would end the game and drop out of screen saver mode.

The goal was to fly around in your goofy little spaceship blasting other, different spaceships. Pretty simple, but the graphics were kinda cool for its time. (around 1994) It's the sort of rendered sprite graphics you see in Ambrosia software games like Swoop and Escape Velocity. There were also asteroids around, and you had a large space to explore.

Lunatic Fringe inspired similar games like Asterax, Space Madness and the hugely popular Maelstrom. I believe Space Madness was most similar in play to Lunatic Fringe, but my memory is fuzzy...

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