Customer Review

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great page-turner from one who was there., 14 April 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: No Sleep Till Canvey Island: The Great Pub Rock Revolution (Pocket Annual) (Paperback)
If you see 1976 and the advent of punk as year zero, then this book will make you think again. Will Birch's work is a ripping yarn that shows how a small bunch of musicians and music business hustlers laid the groundwork for the taste switch from the "progressive" excesses of Yelpesis to the brief safety-pinned glory of the Sex Pistols and their snotty ilk. Rock music would never be the same again.
The research for this book has been exhaustive, and the result of the labour is a delight for those who were there and the only account to date of a scene that was so new, vibrant and "real" for a few brief years in the mid 70's. Opening with the ill-fated Famepushers trip to New York's Fillmore East for the debut of Brinsley Schwartz, Will (songwriter and drummer for the Kursaal Flyers) strips away the bullshit and myth that the hustlers wove around the events of the time to reveal the pure, unalloyed hype that lay beneath. The reaction to this was the creation of the pub rock phenomenon, and then the birth of Stiff Records, both of which are detailed here with care and affection.
The best music books make your toes tap and beg for the records themselves to be played. I've dusted off more old 7 inch singles while reading "No sleep..." than I have since I devoured Peter Guralnick's works on Elvis (Presley): Last Train to Memphis and Careless Love. Now where have I put that Charlie and the Wide Boys E.P.?
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