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- Close Up by The Outsiders
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Before The Sound, Adrian Borland played with punky power-popsters The Outsiders, who brought out two albums, '77's 'Calling On Youth' and '78's 'Close Up', before splitting/morphing into Borland's better-known outfit. That second album has been reissued this week by the excellent Captured Tracks, allowing their jagged street-smart pop gnarl to be appreciated by a whole new generation.
Obviously a lot of the tones and musical influences here are very much based around the first wave of punk, but their simmering, controlled anger is tempered by often rough-around-the-edges pop songs with a touch of The Replacements about them (although obviously this pre-dates the Minneapolis icons by three years or so) and awkwardly skeletal and slightly experimental numbers like the scathing ode to colonial guilt 'White Debt' with its tinnily ringing guitars, surreal phasing drums and distorted, decaying amp-abuse crunches alongside a David Byrne-ish vocal line. A fascinating bit of proto-post-punk (my mathematical brain tells me that'd be "punk", then) with a secret cache of killer pop tunes.
LIYL Buzzcocks, Exploding Hearts, Ramones
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