On the surface this Seventies oldie is the epitome of clean-cut middle-of-the-road soft rock schmaltz. Pause for a moment, though, and the words beneath those blissful harmonies are pure filth.


The more I delve into the vaults of vintage soul, the more previously unheard gems I unearth. I guess that goes without saying. Like this classic example, a tune that’s better than many of the similar soul singles that packed the charts in the Sixties and Seventies.


Suicide – Rocket U.S.A.

25th September 2022 · 1970s, 1976, Music, Punk

I love Suicide. They were punks before punk and their debut album is the template for nearly all the electronica to emerge since its release in 1977. This is their first release – the version of Rocket U.S.A. that appeared on the Live At Max’s compilation the year before. And this is the article I wrote for The Quietus when Alan Vega died in 2016:


I stumbled upon this today and remembered how much I loved it when it came out. So much so that I bought the album.


It’s taken nearly 45 years for me to find out that Blondie’s 1978 hit single was a cover version. This is the original from two years earlier – the only record ever released by The Nerves. (more…)

I don’t know much about The Bizarros beyond the fact they had one of the standout tunes on Stiff’s compilation of bands from Akron, Ohio. (more…)

TRIGGER WARNING: If you think you’re immune to cheap sentimentality this may make you reconsider. Eleven-year-old Björk Guðmundsdóttir’s debut is so cute that even the hardest heart will melt. (more…)

By far the best song on the Max’s Kansas City live album from 1976, this was the sole contribution of Harry Toledo. It sounded strange then – it still sounds ahead of its ahead of its time today! (more…)

Punk’s only trans performer, Wayne County – later Jayne County – made his/her first appearance with Max’s Kansas City. (more…)

Debbie Harry opened the door for girls in rock bands when Blondie released their debut single, with the sexiest B-side ever. (more…)