SPIRAL SCRATCH/TIME’S UP
40th anniversary of classic release
Forty years ago Spiral Scratch was the first truly independent release and pointed the way forward for the DIY punk bands to follow. But the original beats them all; it still crackles with vitality and arrogant swagger. Devoto’s voice drips with world weariness, backed up by Shelley’s pop sensibilities and interpreted by buzz saw aggression. They could never have guessed that a hundred wannabes would be learning the riff to Boredom for years to come.
Time’s Up was a demo recording from 1976, with Devoto still on board, including early versions of classics such as Orgasm Addict. Much bootlegged, and never meant for official release, it stands testament to a moment in English musical history when disunited elements joined forces to create a revolution. Buzzcocks went on to craft perfect pop songs, whilst Devoto invented post-punk.
This review first appeared in Louder Than War magazine, issue 8.