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Punk rock is about attitude more than music. It’s not about how well you can play, it’s about how well you can communicate. Its roots go back to the beginning of rock’n’roll in the 1950s. The rebellious spirit of MC5 and The Stooges in the 1960s helped to define the punk attitude, while Velvet Underground singer Lou Reed and ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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The Sex Pistols were playing intermittent gigs in London, getting a reputation for the random acts of violence that surrounded their shows. They were also inspiring others to form punk bands – notably London SS, who never released a record or even played a note in public but were directly responsible for the formation of The Clash and Generation ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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1977, sacked their songwriting bass player for liking The Beatles and struggled to find venues that would let them play, they became a side-show in the thriving British punk scene now led by The Clash. In London, new punk clubs sprang up and found no shortage of bands to book: Generation X, X-Ray Spex, The Adverts ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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Punk was pronounced dead on many occasions, as early as 1977 when The Clash signed to CBS and when The Sex Pistols split up the following year. By 1979 there was a consensus that, although the original impetus had died down, a thriving post-punk environment had arisen. Liverpool spawned the new psychedelia of Echo & The Bunnymen and ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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February MC5 Kick Out The Jams Often credited as the first intentionally punk band, MC5’s live debut album detonated in 1969. Forming at their Michigan High School, singer Rob Tyner, guitarists Wayne Kramer and Fred ‘Sonic’ Smith, bassist Michael Davis and drummer Dennis Thompson were mentored by political activist John Sinclair of The White Panthers. They were ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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bassist Tony James. They never actually played a gig or released a record but, over a period of nine months, what would become a Who’s Who of the punk scene auditioned for the line-up, including Brian James and Chris Miller (a.k.a. Rat Scabies), who would shortly form The Damned, Chrissie Hynde (The Pretenders) and Matt ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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other clauses in the contract that would later cost them dear. Fanzines Keep The Faith Needless to say, The Clash were accused of selling out by many in the punk scene. The editor of UK fanzine Sniffin’ Glue, Mark P, declared that ‘Punk died the day The Clash signed to CBS’. Bank clerk Mark P had started Sniffin’ ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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January Ian Dury’s Rhythm Stick Hits No.1 An unlikely punk, Ian Dury was 35 when his first solo single, the anthemic ‘Sex And Drugs And Rock And Roll’, was released. A childhood polio victim, Dury had previously led pub rockers Kilburn & The High Roads. The album New Boots And Panties made him an equally unlikely star ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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Up In New York Throwing a fistful of glitter into the mix, along with some debilitating drug problems, The New York Dolls tottered unsteadily along the line between punk and glam rock in the early 1970s. Fronted by the pouting Jagger-esque David Johansen, the band lost drummer Billy Murcia to a drug overdose before their self-titled first album ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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Pistols What could have been The Sex Pistols’ first proper American show at San Francisco’s Winterland Ballroom on 14 January in front of 5,000 people, including a sizeable punk contingent, was instead an incoherent, dispirited shambles. Sid Vicious was barely conscious, Johnny Rotten was alert but deliberately uninvolved, while Steve Jones and Paul Cook just ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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The Pistols On Film Polish-American director Lech Kowalski based his punk documentary, D.O.A: A Rite of Passage, around The Sex Pistols’ American 1978 tour, which ended in the band’s dissolution. Footage from the tour was intercut with live performances by other British punk bands, Generation X, The Dead Boys, Rich Kids, X-Ray ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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, a run-down bar when Television first played there in the spring of 1974. Within a year CBGBs was the acknowledged home of New York punk. June Patti Smith Makes Punk From Poetry First of the New York crowd to get a record out was Patti Smith, a poet and writer who teamed up with guitarist and writer Lenny Kaye ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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the band’s fourth album Remain In Light, which saw them continue to develop beyond the confines of new wave rock. July The Oi Scene A peculiarly British offshoot of punk, Oi was meant to return the music to the working classes with a style that combined energy with terrace chant choruses. Its leading exponents were The 4-Skins, Angelic ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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March The Dictators Go Girl Crazy The anarchic Dictators spiced up the New York scene with their Go Girl Crazy! album in 1975, a coarse blend of punk and heavy metal with sharp witty lyrics mocking the junk culture they saw all around them, which naturally included punk and heavy metal. Unfortunately the chaos that surrounded the band ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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The No Wave Scene Whilst hardcore emerged from the visceral side of punk, no wave owed its origins to its artier aspects. As a musical style, no wave was hard to define as it drew on various genres, but a driving rhythm and a certain atonal quality were key. The scene began in New York, the traditional ...

Source: Punk: The Brutal Truth, by Hugh Fielder and Mike Gent
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