Twenty tracks compilation including their three classic singles, 13 unreleased tracks and one demo version from one of Britain's most under-rated punk bands.
Satan’s Rats formed in Evesham, Worcestershire in January 1977, with an average age of just seventeen. Songs like the anthemic ‘Year Of The Rats’ about the demise of the old fart groups, their appearance at the Birmingham Punk Festival and support to the Sex Pistols at the Roxy soon saw the band build a large following and inevitably drew them to the attention of record labels. Their first demo (included on this CD) earned them a deal with DJM Records. Hardly a punk label, it was home to Elton John and Johnny Guitar Watson and also the enigmatic Rikki Sylvan (from Rikki & The Last Days Of Earth) who would produce their first two singles. The first single ‘In My Love For You’ was released in 1977. Bob Geldof reviewed in the NME and slagged it off. The second single ‘Year Of The Rats’ released early in 1978 fared no better, sinking without a trace despite being regarded as something of a classic these days. For their third single ‘You Make Me Sick’ they had Vic Maile (Dr Feelgood/Fruit Eating Bears) as producer. He managed to capture the anger of the band perfectly and this single, released in 1978 was undoubtedly their finest moment. Julie Burchill reviewed it in the NME, she hated it. Later that year Paul Rencher quit, the band recruited vocalist Wendy Wu, changed their name to The Photos, signed to Epic and had a hit album. All three Satan’s Rats singles are highly prized collectors’ items and have been heavily bootlegged on punk compilations, one series even naming itself ‘Year Of The Rats’.
Great punk band formed on July 4th 1977, with a lineup of Johnny Stingray (guitar), his girlfriend (drums), his girlfriend's little brother Kid Spike (vocals), and bass player D.O.A. Dan ("an acne-scarred lunatic with more than a few loose screws"). They rehearsed under the Pussycat Theater on Hollywood Blvd, which was run by Brendan Mullen, an entrepreneurial Scotsman who transformed the rehearsal spot into The Masque.
By the time they recorded the Neutron Bomb 7" in late '77 Charlie Trash was behind the drum kit, but by the time the single was released in 1978 "a lame power grab on part of the rhythm section" reduced the band to just Stingray and Spike, who soldiered on nonetheless.
Paul Roessler (The Screamers) and Bruce Barf (pre-Wall of Voodoo) were enlisted to help out with shows, before Stingray and Spikesettled on being a power trio, with a girl called Maddog on drums. This lineup recorded the Slow Boy 7" in 1978 and three songs for the Tooth And Nail compilation in 1979.
The band folded in Spring '79, with Spike joining The Gears, Maddog drifting into even greater obscurity and Stingray forming KAOS.
1977 Studio Demo
01. Neutron Bomb
02. Killer Queers
03. Hot Stumps
February 1982 Masque Reunion, Cathay De Grande, Hollywood, CA
Though the Controllers were a second-division L.A. punk band ('77-'79) like the Zeros, Plugz, Eyes, Skulls, and Rhino 39, they were still totally great, and totally better than 99 percent of what's come since in the genre. Theirs was a low-down, dirty, trash rock type of post-Thunders punk that sometimes coalesced into era classics. Since this LP smartly collects all eight tracks they barely managed to release (five on their two 7" singles, three on the seminal Tooth and Nail comp), you get their three remarkable tracks: the cool, super groove 4/4 of "Killer Queers," the sardonic, anti-televangelist heavy riff slammer "Electric Church" and, most of all, their totally awesome cover of that old crooner saw "Jezebel." And the rest are the sort of good fun you'd get at a drunken pillow fight where no one cares about all the beer that's getting spilled and the stains and rips on everyone's clothes. Bacchus tacks on one track from the trio's brief 96-'97 reunion (oh, to have seen it! they sound marvelous here!), two from the 1992 Skull Control incarnation (Spike and Maddog, but no Stingray), and one from Stingray's short-lived, excellent post-Controllers band, Kaos. These six extra selections all emanate from the old days, so this is a succinct and appropriate way for us to piece together what we missed decades ago. The banging, lost killers "Hot Stumps" and "Beat on the Brat" nod "White Trash Christ" in particular show that there was much more here than the tiny trickle they managed to get out in their glory days.
01. (The Original) Neutron Bomb
02. Killer Queers
03. Slow Boy
04. Do The Uganda
05. Another Day
06. Electric Church
08. Suburban Suicide
09. Barnacle Bill The Sailor
10. Top Secret
11. Your World
12. Hot Stumps
13. White Trash Christ
14. Tail-Lights To Texas
Tracks 1&2 from What Records 04, released 1977
Tracks 3, 4, & 8 from Siamese Records SM 003, released 1978
The above tracks mastered from vinyl
Tracks 5, 6 & 7 from The TOOTH AND NAIL compilation
Track 10 by KAOS, from Product Of A Sick Mind promo 7" and
12" EP, released 1980
Tracks 11-12 by SKULL CONTROL, from 'Radio Danger'
released CD only on Iloki Records, '93. Recorded at Westworld, '92.
Everything except the vinyl tracks come from 1/4"
master tapes, with the exception of tracks 9 and 14, which come off a cassette
whichJohnny was lucky enough to find.
ate way for us to piece together what we missed decades
The banging, lost killers "Hot Stumps" and "Beat on the
Brat" nod "White Trash Christ" in particular show that there was
much more here than the tiny trickle they managed to get out in their glory
Some great early UK punk here. This compiles two Unwanted singles on Raw Records plus five demos they did all circa 1977, 1978. 1984 has long been a favorite since I heard it on MMR radio in 1985 (oh no a year to late!) and that song drew me in to buy this a few years later. The End is Nigh is also a highlight, where they are already commenting on the tendency of punk conformity in 1977. Secret Police see's them trying on some dub reggae, which was a common thread for many of the UK bands of the day. Bleak Outlook, I'm Not Me, and Withdrawal are cool punk blasts. Whilst Fraulin appears as their nervy take on a love song. Also you get a punky cover of These Boots Are Made for Walking.