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Wednesday, 5 April 2017

40 Years of Punk & New Wave: The Sounds of 1977 #8 Playlist

This is the eighth in the Series The Sounds of 1977 and once again we bring you another twenty tracks that were making an impact upon our young teenage lives way back in 1977.

Punk had been a "sound" that had been quite easy to determine but "New Wave", which I think was a more American term, had a truckload of bands that were questionable as to if they actually fitted the mould that the Labels, press etc were attaching to them. I have tried to show a little of this with the latest Playlist. Also the term New Wave meant that a band under that banner was deemed a little safer!

Whatever the case, it's an interesting Playlist loaded with more of the good, the bad and the ugly. There are also a few links to other songs by the artists below so click on them to have a listen to more.

On The Playlist
Ain't Been To No Music School - The Nosebleeds
Released on Rabid Records. Usually known as Ed Banger and The Nosebleeds and hailing from Manchester they were the second band to be signed to Rabid (Slaughter and the Dogs were the other band). Ed Banger would leave the band in early 1978 to begin a solo career but joined Slaughter and the Dogs. Morrissey and Billy Duffy (The Cult) featured in a 1978 line up of the band (Now that would have been an interesting line up to see!).

Save My Life - Generation X
Self-Released Demo Single that included Your Generation as the A-Side and Ready Steady Go as well on the B-Side. A Second Self-Released single that followed included the band's first John Peel Session. There were apparently only 500 copies of each one!

Turning Grey - The Boys
The second track on the B-Side of the second single First Time from The Boys released on NEMS.

Oh Bondage Up Yours! - X-Ray Spex
One and only single released on Virgin Records before they signed with EMI International. It's a stone cold Punk Classic! Version on the Playlist is from the Documentary Punk In London.

 Roadrunner (Thrice) - Jonathan Richman and The Modern Lovers
A live version of the Classic Roadrunner that was on the B-Side of their Beserkley released single The Morning Of Our Lives. This version of Roadrunner was only available on this single. Another American band that were thrown in the pot of the New Wave but probably were not really atuned to the whole Punk/New Wave ethos.

Joey's On The Street Again - The Boomtown Rats
Taken from the Self-Titled Debut Album on Ensign Records. Always one of my favourite Rats tracks.

Little Girl - Mink DeVille
Released as the second single by Mink DeVille in the UK in September 1977 after Spanish Stroll had been a hit. Whilst I really liked him I am never certain that he even fitted the "New Wave" tag that had been put on him in the States. The song is more akin to something Springsteen might have been releasing! It's worth adding to the list just to see how diverse people's perception of what was Punk and New Wave at the time.

I Think We're Alone Now - The Rubinoos
Another from the Beserkley stable. The Rubinoos were more a Power Pop type of band. The song was originally a hit by Tommy James and The Shondells in the sixties.  The same song would go on to be a hit for Lene Lovich and teenage pop star Tiffany. They also released their Debut album in 1977.

Watching The Detectives - Elvis Costello
Was the last single on Stiff Records for Costello before he moved over to Radar Records. The version on the playlist is from a Live Performance in Liverpool in August 1977 (I think the venue is Eric's maybe!). It was his first hit single reaching #15 in the UK.

Be What You Gotta Be - The Motors
I've included on the Playlist a live version that was recorded at The Marquee on 23rd December 1977 (but not actually released until 1978 on the 12" of Airport).

Venus Eccentric! - Neon Hearts
Their Debut Single from 1977 on their own Neon Heart Records came in a bit of an oversized cardboard sleeve. Steve Heart, one of the founding members of the band had previously played Sax in the Suburban Studs but it was not considered very punk rock to have a sax man in the band! The single was released as a Double A-Side with Regulations being the other song (and a top notch tune it is as well).

The Modern World - The Jam
Released in October as the forerunner to the second album released in 1977. The single reached #36 in the charts (and did get them on Top of the Pops!). The B-Sides were all recorded at the 100 Club and include two Soul Covers (Sweet Soul Music and Back In My Arms Again) as well as a part to fade of Bricks and Mortar.

Chip On My Shoulder - Cock Sparrer
B-side of their second single on Decca Records (the A-Side was a magnificent cover of the Rolling Stones' We Love You). The single was also released in various parts of Europe including Italy, Belguim, Spain and France.

Trash - The Doll
Arabs in 'Arrads - The Art Attacks
Two from the Streets album on Beggars Banquet.
The Doll wouldn't release their own Debut single until 1978 (Don't Tango On My Heart), also on Beggars Banquet (the fourth single released by the label.
The Art Attacks only ever released two singles, one in 1978 ( I Am A Dalek on Albatross Records) and the other in 1979 (First and Last on Fresh Records) but they were included in 1977 on both the Streets album and also Live At The Vortex - Volume 1.

Boss Man - Mutants
Released on Rox Records, this Birkenhead based band only ever released two singles before vanishing into the great beyond (Hard Time released on Red Vinyl in 1978 was the other one). It wasn't brilliant but it's worth including to show what else was out there in 1977. The band themselves were formed in 1976 and it's questionable exactly who in the band regarded themselves as "Punks" because they looked like (to quote Henrick Poulsen) "they're trying their hardest to be punk's answer to the Village People!"

I'm A Punk - Norman and The Hooligans
This is terrible, I am not sure if we were meant to take this seriously or whether it was just one of a number of wretched novelty records that appeared decrying punk! They only released one single (thank goodness!)

Wading Through A Ventilator - The Soft Boys
From the Debut EP Give It To The Soft Boys on Raw Records. Totally strange stuff penned by Robyn Hitchcock who is still making and releasing music today (nothing as oddball as this though!).

Soul Train - The Psycho's
This one was featured on the Raw Records Compilation in 1977 called Raw Deal! It was a rather interesting album that featured another song from The Killjoys (Kevin Rowland - Dexys) that hadn't been released before called At Night and also a cover of Louie Louie by The Bloodclots who were in fact The Valves

Don't Take No For An Answer - Tom Robinson Band
I chose the 1977 John Peel Session version of this track. A live version of it would appear on the Rising Free EP in 1978 that was recorded at Live at The Lyceum Ballroom in The Strand, London and a couple of other venues the names of have escaped me for the moment. In 1977 Tom Robinson had enjoyed a Top Ten hit (it actually reached #5!) with 2-4-6-8 Motorway.
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