London. New York. Paris. Paisley?
Paisley, a well-aimed gob’s distance from Glasgow, was teeming with creativity, agitprop and rage in the late 70’s and early 80’s. Everything you ever loved about punk, in expression in its purest form, in DIY fuck off I’ll do what I want attitude, was slammed down onto four 7”s on the Groucho Marxist label between 1979 and 1981. Unheralded, unknown, uncaring and unbelievable.
This LP compiles the four 7”s released by the label which was small but perfectly formed. The label, run by printer Tommy Kayes a member of a Clydeside Anarchist group, openly nailed its politics to each release with ties to Rock Against Racism and a strong anti police sentiment.
Musically the Groucho Marxists were all over the place, trying to figure out what punk was about. XS DISCHARGE give us six tracks across the compilation which range from the PUBLIC IMAGE LIMITED esque ‘Frustration’ to the uptempo 1977 foot to the floor punk rock classics ‘Hassles’ and ‘Lifted’. DEFIANT POSE are the other mainstays with three tracks including the CLASH inspired “After the Bang’ which sounds urgent and uplifting whilst ‘Fight’ is a glorious raw UNDERTONES style nugget. Also included are the abstract art noise of the pre-COIL/STRAWBERRY SWITCHBLADE group THE POEMS and the URBAN ENEMIES who cut ‘Who do you Hate’ would have made a perfect Good Vibrations 7”. Please don’t forget the other tracks from MOD CONS, SNEEX, THE MENTOL ERRORS and THE FEGS – all deserve your attention and are perfect examples of amateur DIY punk.
That such a fertile, colourful scene of freaks and geeks could be bubbling away out of the glare of popularity is a lesson to us all: Life’s too short, do what you want. Or as XS DISCHARGE would have it: Life’s A Wank.
The LP comes accompanied by a massive 40 page 11×11 inch booklet of archival material. No stone was left unturned in the quest to document this incredible micro scene,. Nearly 45 years after the fact we can shed some light onto a truly cult local scene.