Various Artists - Rough Trade Post Punk 01

Punk music has never left us. It's just gone underground. I attended the Holidays In The Sun punk festival last year in Blackpool and saw the old favourites like Penetration, The Addicts and The Dead Kennedys plus some of the new bands like The Foamers, Spunge and Sick On The Bus. There were at least two generations ofpunks out there enjoying great bands who the world to their fans. The good people at Rough Trade Shops have compiled a plethora of post-punk perfection from an eclectic range of undisputed talent new and old. It isn't an obvious selection by any means, but to the casual observer there are a few tracks you'll no doubt recognize.

Bush Tetra's "Too Many Creeps" is an unfussy raw basic drums, vocal, bass and guitar track yet it's simplicity is its strength. It's a good old fashioned rabble rousing rocker with a monotonous dead pan vocal full of character and attitude. Pop Group's "We Are All Prostitute" has vocals like Screaming Jay Hawkins with an understated ska beat. It's funky and insanely fun. Where else are you going to hear a song with political lyrics, hand claps and out of tune saxophone solos with scratchy violins. An assault on the ears perhaps, but if you like three minutes of relentless ranting then this unforgettable song will be right up your street. Before Scritti Politti made commercial pop music they were an edgy serious guitar band as this track "Skank Bloc Bologna" demonstrates. If the the truth be told, this is a worthy but dull attempt at cutting edge music. Has it's moments, but they're very few and far between. Wire had a massive influence on bands such as Elastica and Menswear. Their song "Ex-Lion Tamer" has scratchy, volatile guitars and a very American quirky vocal with indecipherable lyrics. It's great to hear the band again as they had so much to offer in their musical world.

Other bands included on this compilation are Delta 5, The Slits and Liquid Liquid. For fans of this music, this is an essential compilation.

Nicholas Paul Godkin

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