Friday 6 January 2017

Times Up/Spiral Scratch - 40 year Anniversary

Recorded on the 28th of December 1976, it wasn't until the 29th of January 1977 that Buzzcocks "Spiral Scratch" E.P. finally saw its debut release, arguably the third biggest impacting Punk 7" of the time, just behind the Sex Pistols "Anarchy in the UK" and the Damned's debut and the UK's first Punk single, "New Rose."

I remember the date clearly as I rushed into Derek Guest record store in Bolton, Lancashire to grab my copy of this fantastic E.P. and for me it is certainly the best example of any DIY punk record that you'll ever see or hear and it was only a couple of months prior to me getting to see the band at their opening gig at BIT, aged 14 it changed my life forever.

Now maybe the Damned did release the first UK punk 7" with "New Rose" and as much as I love them it certainly wasn't a patch on this blistering E.P. that comprises as we all know and love, the following tracks;

"Breakdown" - 1:58
"Times Up" - 3:07
"Boredom" - 2:51
"Friends of Mine" - 2:15

The lyrics on these tracks were genius to an impressionable 14 year old, not to mention sharp and extremely fast.

Talking of fast the tracks that we know today from the "Times Up" album was a precursor to the E.P. and for me really does highlight just how good the band sounded in those early days.  Many younger punks that I talk to today think it was all manic but that was far from the truth, the songs live were much slower but had a menace about them, delivered with a "have you taken notice yet" approach in their delivery.  At least that's what it said to me and still does today.

As were approaching that 40th anniversary I was really pleased to be contacted by Howard's and Magazine Manager Nigel recently who has kindly sent me the following PR releases to publish on this blog and which will appear in the next edition of Mojo and Uncut magazines. 

Even Mark Bolan got in on the act 


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