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Thursday, 13 April 2017

Punk/New Wave and Post-Punk: The Sound of 1978 #1


We have been looking and listening to some of the Punk and New Wave tunes in The Sound of 1977 the past few months and I thought it would be good to have another series on the go spotlighting The Sound of 1978.

1978 saw the demise of The Damned and then the Sex Pistols but others born around the same time would continue making some great music. Members of The Damned dashed off to other bands King (Captain Sensible), The White Cats (Rat Scabies), Tanz Der Youth (Brian James) and Doctors of Madness (Dave Vanian). The Damned of course would resurface later in the year as The School Bullies and The Doomed before reverting back to The Damned in time to sign a new deal with Chiswick Records and begin making brilliant music once again.

Once again it will consist of a twenty track Playlist highlighting some of the great A-Sides, B-Sides, Sessions and Album Tracks from the time and added to the mix will be some Post-Punk tunes (yes, I know, yet another genre to add to the many!).

Hope you enjoy this one as there's so much to look forward to in it.


The Playlist

What's On The Playlist?
The Prisoner - The Clash
We kick off with one of the great B-Sides from The Clash on what is I think their best single ever (White Man) In Hammersmith Palais. The Prisoner was good enough I believe to be an A-Side. This fifth single by the band was released in June 1978 and reached #32 on the UK Singles Chart.

G.L.C. - Menace
Second single from Menace released in March 1978 on Small Wonder Records (the fifth single to be released on the label). Obviously one that didn't get much airplay due to their "kind" words regarding the Greater London Council! 😉

No Time To Be 21 - The Adverts
Fourth single from The Adverts. Released in January 1978 on Bright Records. It reached #34 in the UK Charts and was actually their last single to do so.

Eddie & Sheena - The Electric Chairs
First single for the band on Safari Records released in February 1978 (they had previously released singles on Illegal Records and Sweet FA both in 1977). It was the classic tale of Teddy Boy meets Punk Rock Girl and they have a baby "and they named the little brat Elvis Rotten!" 😁

Rich Kids - Rich Kids
After Glen Matlock had been sent packing from the Sex Pistols he set up a new band that featured former Slik and PVC2 frontman Midge Ure and got a deal with EMI. The debut single was the self-titled Rich Kids. It was released on Red Vinyl and peaked in the charts at #24.

Shot By Both Sides - Magazine
Debut single from former Buzzcock Howard Devoto and his new band released on Virgin Records released in January 1978. The single just missed out on breaking into the Top 40 (stalling at #41) but they did get on Top of the Pops!


Another Girl, Another Planet - The Only Ones
Debut single for major label CBS and actually their second single overall. Although not a chart hit on its first release Another Girl, Another Planet would go on to become a classic that has been covered by the likes of Blink 182, The Replacements, Misty Miller, The Libertines, The Lightning Seeds and The Mighty Lemon Drops to name but a few.


Never Been In A Riot - The Mekons
First single on Fast Product and debut from the band formed at Leeds University in 1977.


Damaged Goods - Gang Of Four
Another from the Fast Product stable and yet another band hailing from Leeds. I got to see them at The Lyceum supporting the Buzzcocks on one of their first trips to London.


Nicotine Stain - Siouxsie and The Banshees
The long awaited Debut Single from Siouxsie and the Banshees had been issued in August and gave the band a huge hit (#7 in the UK) with Hong Kong Garden. The Debut Album would follow in November and peak in the charts at #12. What was noticable about the album was that they were already moving beyond Punk to greener pastures.


Denis - Blondie
Their first Top Ten hit in the UK, stalled at #2. It was a cover version of an old Randy and the Rainbows song (but they changed the title from Denise to Denis). On the Playlist I've included a live performance from The Beat Club. The single would appear on Second Album Plastic Letters that was released in February 1978.


Plastic Surgery - Adam and The Ants
The Ants made their Vinyl Debut on the Soundtrack of Derek Jarman's Jubilee movie on Polydor Records released in April 1978. They also had Deutscher Girls on it. The Soundtrack also included music from Chelsea, Wayne County & The Electric Chairs, Maneaters and Brian Eno. The Ants Debut Single would not arrive until October on Decca Records (Young Parisians/Lady). Both songs from the Soundtrack would eventually be released as a single (on EG/Polydor) in 1982 with Deutscher Girls as the A-Side reaching #13 in the charts, no doubt a move to capitalise on the back of the band's success whilst signed to CBS.


Gimmie Your Heart - Subs
I love this single. A one off on Stiff Records from Scottish band Subs. They only released the one single before they broke up. Bassist Derek Forbes resurfaced in Simple Minds. The single was produced by Larry Wallis.


Solitary Confinement - The Members
Another 1Off on Stiff Records was the Debut Single from The Members, again produced by Larry Wallis. The Members first Vinyl appearance had been on the Streets LP in 1977 with Fear On The Streets. They would later sign with Virgin Records have some minimal success.


Autonomy - Buzzcocks
The flip side of I Don't Mind (their third single for United Artists). The single, released 14th April 1978 only reached #55 in the charts which is incredible because it is one of their finest singles ever. Both songs appeared on their excellent Debut Album Another Music In A Different Kitchen.


Ready Steady Go - Generation X
Third single from the band on Chrysalis Records and missed out on Top 40 as it stalled at #47.

 Nobody's Scared - Subway Sect
Debut Single from the band who had played at the 100 Club Punk Festival in 1976 and supported The Clash on the White Riot Tour in 1977. The Ambition single released in November 1978 always gets a lot of attention (and I'm not knocking it because it's a great 7") but this one for me is the best one.


Who Are The Mystery Girls? - Slaughter and The Dogs
From their Debut Album Do It Dog Style on Decca Records, The Dogs cover the New York Dolls. I always thought Slaughter and The Dogs sounded much better live than on record as they sometimes came over as tame little puppies!


5 Minutes - The Stranglers
The fifth single from The Stranglers and not taken from the No More Heroes album or on what would be the up and coming third album Black and White. It was a stand alone single dealing with a very delicate subject (rape) and the frustrations at tracking down those guilty of the crime. It was released in January 1978 and reached #11 on the charts.


The Day The World Turned Dayglo - X-Ray Spex
Second single from Poly Styrene & the band. It was their first for EMI International. It was released on Orange Vinyl. It gave the band their first Chart success peaking at #23 in the UK Singles Chart.


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