Category: british punk

The Lurkers “Fulham Fallout” 1978. Beggars Ban…

The Lurkers “Fulham Fallout” 1978. Beggars Banquet Records. Fulham Fallout is classic 70′s punk, the debut album from English rockers The Lurkers (who have been dubbed, mostly accurately, “The British Ramones”) and it hit #57 on the UK album charts. It’s such great British punk! Snotty, upbeat, punchy, catchy, full of 3-chord hooks, and, like The Ramones, simple, straightforward rock-n-roll: no pretension, no politics. Also like The Ramones, the songs do start to kind of sound alike after awhile, though The Lurkers mix things up occasionally with the inclusion of the harmonica and glockenspiel (not instruments known for their prevalence in the punk canon) and a cover of Phil Spector’s and The Crystals’ 1963 “Then He Kissed Me,” though The Lurkers cheekily rename it “Then I Kicked Her” and speed it up, a lot. My favorite tracks on Fulham Fallout are “I Don’t Need to Tell Her,” “Shadow” (that single released in 1977 was Beggars Banquet first ever release and influential John Peel named it his #11 song of ‘77) the hyper-beat and aptly titled “Go, Go, Go,” “Self Destruct” (“self-destruct! gonna get fucked!”) and the album closer “Be My Prisoner” that’s intro’d with a great drum solo. They only slow down a little, once, on “Gerald” (this one has the aforementioned harmonica) and it’s probably the most complex songs on the album but also my least favorite.

The Jam “In the City” 1977. Today, May 25th, i…

The Jam “In the City” 1977. Today, May 25th, is Paul “The Modfather” (and two-time winner of Best British Male award) Weller’s 60th birthday (b. 1958). Now that the cat has finally vacated his perch on top of the turntable, I’m able to spin In the City, The Jam’s debut album. 

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The Jam released one single from their debut album, the title track “In the City” which hit #40 on the UK charts. The song (and the entire record) celebrates a resurgence of 60′s-inspired mod and youth culture (the song was influenced by The Who, even borrowing the title from their “In the City”) while blending in 70′s punchy punk attitude and politics (“In the city there’s a thousand men in uniform and I hear they now have the right to kill a man”). The early Who/mod sound appears on most of the album like “Art School” and “Sounds From the Street” There are also two cover songs on In the City that are less mod: “Slow Down,” a rockin’ rhythm-and-blues track originally by Larry Wiliams from 1958 (also covered by the Beatles) (that early rock-n-roll sound reappears on the b-side to the “In the City” single: “Takin’ My Love”) and a punked up “Batman Theme,” which is hilarious.