Buzzcocks 30 Review

Live. Released 2008.  

BBC Review

An essential addition to any fan's collection.

Ian Wade 2008

The Buzzcocks story is one that encapsulates the entire circumference of punk. Originally formed by Howard Devoto, in the wake of the Sex Pistols playing Manchester, they instantly struck a chord with their debut EP, Spiral Scratch. Then, almost immediately, Devoto left to carve angular diagrams and philosophical puzzles in the marvellous Magazine. That is when the more familiar strain of 'cocks came into being, with Pete Shelley taking over vocals and creating one of the more enduring bands to have emerged from 'year zero', detailing love's pitfalls over some of the finest pop punk ever made. 30, a live album, neatly encapsulates this history.

Over three decades, Buzzcocks have been coming in and out of the atmosphere to remind us of their amazingness. They've toured with some of the legends such as Nirvana, as well as Pearl Jam and last had a semi-hit in 2005 with an all star version of their classic Ever Fallen In Love (With Someone You Shouldn't've)? that featured Elton John, David Gilmour and Robert Plant. By now, there should really be some kind of plaque outside their homes, or at least a bronze statuette in their honour.

Recorded at London's Forum, and released last year in a mail order and digital download version, Buzzcocks: 30 now gets a 'proper' push just in case some of their hardcore fanbase haven't quite mastered computers yet. Its 28 tracks encompass their entire catalogue. It's all here: What Do I Get, Orgasm Addict and Boredom alongside later more recent tunes such as Reconciliation from 2006's Flat Pack Philosophy. All rattle, spit and crack their way into a seamless whole. Probably not an essential purchase for those new to the band, but an essential addition to any fan's collection.

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