Released on CD in 1991, just a year after the first CD release of the classic 'Singles Going Steady' compilation, 'Operators Manual' has a similar tracklist to the aforementioned but includes a couple of missing singles, and throws in a few high-qualilty album tracks for good measure. Covering the period 1977 to 1980, it's Buzzocks of the finest vintage.
And the sound quality? Excellent. With some tracks I'd even argue it's slightly superior to the same on 'Singles Going Steady'.
So now the big question. Which is the better option, 'Operators Manual' or 'Singles Going Steady'? The answer lies simply in your preferred choice of tracks because either way this is a top-notch Buzzcocks compilation, one with which you cannot go wrong.....be you at entry-level or a hardcore fan.
I'm giving it 4 stars rather than 5 purely because the compilation sags a little in the middle with the title track. 'Nostaligia' and 'Walking Distance', none of which match the standard of anything else on the album. 'Walking Distance' sounds like something penned on a bad day by Bruce Foxton and destined to end up as the B-side of a Jam single in 1981....but that's exactly why someone invented the button which allows us to skip tracks....
Orgasm Addict What Do I get? I Don't Mind Autonomy Fast Cars Get On Our Own Sixteen Fiction Romance Love You More Noise Annoys Ever Fallen in Love? Operators Manual Nostalgia Walking Distance Nothing Left ESP Promises Lipstick Everybody's Happy Nowadays Harmony In My Head You Say You Don't Love Me I Don't Know What To Do With My Life I Believe Are Everything Radio Nine
I was on the virge of replacing my vinyl version of 'Another Music.....' when I noticed this CD. If you like thrashy guitars and mostly short punk/power pop type songs you can do not better than buy this CD, and as compilations go it avoids the usual insertion of space fillers. The sleeve notes are pretty good as well. The other nice thing about the Buzzcocks is they mainly steer clear of the usual bile associated with the punk era. If only 'Boredom' was here as well? Still going to keep my vinyl though as it came with the free limited edition shopping bag and not forgetting my all time favourite Buzzcocks song - Moving Away From The Pulsebeat! This CD is excellent value so buy it.
I first heard The Buzzcocks when I was on holiday in Cornwall in about 1980. The lad I was hanging around with was into Orgasm Addict - didn't understand it so it shows how young I was. Anyway, fast-forward fifteen years and I was watching an American film which had Why Cant I touch It on the soundtrack and I rushed out and bought the compilation. I may not be an origian lfan of the band but am still a fairly ardent fan.
If there was ever a band that deserve more recognition as pioneers for some of the best guitar bands over the last twenty years it has to be the Buzzcocks.Not punk in the same way as the sex pistols or Sham 69,the Buzzcocks were the masters of the perfect three minute guitar song.Melodies mixed with vocals of love,angst and heartbreak filled each song courtesy of messers Pete Shelley and Steve Diggle.Most of you will be familiar with ever fallen in love, but listen out for masterpieces such as ESP,I believe, What do I get,Harmony in my head and my personal favourite Are Everything recorded just before the band originally split in 1981 a song full of great guitar lines mixed with a beatlesque string arrangement.Not a filler in this fine collection of songs and after reforming in 1989 are still going strong today.I would seriously recommend Trade Test Transmission (1993) and their most recent release Modern (1999)as albums well worth listening to which prove that the Buzzcocks are indeed one of the most important bands of the last 25 years.
The Buzzcocks encapsulated one aspect of punk, the return to short, snappy pop songs. And this album is chock full of them, including some of the very best examples; be it the opening Orgasm Addict or the perfect pop of Ever Fallen in Love (forget Fine Young Cannibals awful take.. here is the real thing). This is an album for playing when you want to have a good time. It doesn't have the politics or anger that set the Clash apart, or the Sex Pistols spiteful rage, instead it has loads of great three minute, straight forward pop masterpieces. The only track which doesn't quite work is I Beleive, which is far too long and outstays its welcome, it was the sound of the band losing the plot and forgetting what they were good at. The reformed Buzzcocks are still going strong last time I heard but this is where all those memories lie. Of other bands around at the time, only early Undertones come close to matching these gems for sheer adolescent energy... The sound is distinctive, it still sounds like it was mixed to be played on transistor radios and all the better for it. This sort of music doesn't wear the niceties of hifi production well. It sounds best with this bouyant almost tinny sound. It won't give your hifi a work out, but then that wasn't what it was recorded for. If you want booming bass or intricate muscianship, look elsewhere. If you want joyous, three minute rock/pop anthems, then this collection is your man. If you're a forty something harking back to the punk/post punk era for a reminder of those times, then this collection should do just nicely.
Great collection of almost all of the Buzzcocks best songs. Buy this to discover (or, like I did, re-discover) the genius of the Buzzcocks, including such sublime masterpieces as Everybody's Happy Nowadays, Noise Annoys, Orgasm Addict, ... well almost every track is a masterpiece actually. (Buy the classic EP Spiral Scratch, with Howard Devoto, too)
A stunning collection of songs,i would only fault it on the basis that some of my personal favourites are not included.Every home should have one..and everything else they did in the late 70s/early 80s.One of the greatest bands ever.