This was from the second wave of punk in 1978. I could immediately identify with their songs. They weren't as overtly aggressive as The Clash and Pistols - I remember hearing the Pistol's "Pretty Big" and thinking it was quite loutish and right then I was getting into poetry and films. The Buzzcocks had such a brilliant sense of melody. I'd play "Ever Fallen in Love" over and over, and "ESP", which had this fantastic repetitive riff. There was a great buzz-saw sound on the guitar and everything was quite fast. The drum sounded like somebody falling downstairs and the unusual nasal vocals added to the spiky sound. I can certainly hear them in later bands like Nirvana and Green Day.
Empty Bottle Broken Hearts The Murder City Devils
I've been buying a lot from Sub Pop, which is label in Seattle that began during grunge. This is dark and blues-based, punky rock and roll. It's taken a new slant on everything I've heard before. And they share my interests: one song, "Left Hand Right Hand", is about a favourite film of mine, Night of the Hunter. Sometimes they remind me of Nick Cave because it's nasty and raw. It's alcohol-laced, doing exactly what it says on the pack - empty bottles broken hearts. It would be like a Tom Waits song, playing last thing at night, but its energy is really quite full-on. I play it first thing in the morning as having just become a father I need something to give me adrenalin.
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