If you think the title sounds like the name of a Chinese restaurant, you're right. Said Siouxsie: "I'll never forget, there was a Chinese restaurant in Chislehurst called 'The Hong Kong Garden.' Me and my friend were really upset that we used to go there and like, occasionally when the skinheads would turn up it would really turn really ugly. These gits were just go in on mass and just terrorize these Chinese people who were working there. We'd try and say 'Leave them alone,' you know. It was a kind of tribute." (from Punk Top Ten Interview, August 6, 2001.
Siouxsie and the Banshees were a UK punk group formed in London in 1976. Siouxsie Sioux (real name: Susan Dallion) was the lead singer. She and the Banshees' initial lineup emerged from the Bromley Contingent, a notorious group of punks inspired by the Sex Pistols. In addition to bassist Steve Severin and guitarist Marco Pirroni, the band included drummer John Simon Ritchie, who assumed the name Sid Vicious. They disbanded after one gig, Vicious joining the Sex Pistols and Pirroni later joining Adam And The Ants. Sioux and Severin re-formed their band the next year with guitarist Peter Fenton and drummer Kenny Morris. By 1979 Fenton and Morris had left to be replaced by drummer Budgie (real name Peter Clark) and for a short period Robert Smith of The Cure. After a succession of other guitarists came and left the band finally split in 1996. Sioux and Budgie, who later married, also recorded as the Creatures.
This was the first of 17 Top 40 singles that Siouxsie and the Banshees achieved in the British charts. Five years later they recorded their biggest ever UK hit with their cover of The Beatles' "Dear Prudence
." In 1991, "Kiss Them for Me
" became their only US Top 40 hit, peaking at #23. It did better over the Atlantic than in the UK where it only reached #32.
This was featured on the soundtrack of Sofia Coppola's 2006 film Marie Antoinette with the addition of a 20 second orchestral string intro.
This song had its genesis in a song guitarist John McKay was working on entitled "People Phobia." Steve Severin recalled to Mojo magazine May 2014: "'Hong Kong Garden' had happened in the same way as all our early songs: McKay would present the beginning of a chord sequence and would work around it, shape it, arrange it. Adding an Oriental feel with xylophone and the gong at the end seemed dead obvious."