The Exile’s entire recording career – three EPs – was over by the end of 1977, making them trailblazers in the punkosphere – and earning them a reputation as the ‘Godfathers of Scottish Punk.’
We all know how punk responded to the Queen’s jubilee in 1977 don’t we. Well, while the Pistols were topping the chart, up in Scotland there was a punk group called The Exile making its own tribute to Her Majesty.
Jubilee 77 was one of the tracks on their debut EP Don’t Tax Me – one of the earliest punk releases, in August 1977, on the perfectly named indie label Boring Records.
In true punk fashion, the entire EP was recorded and mixed in three hours flat and released in a sleeve made of tissue paper, featuring a photo of the Glasgow quartet doing their best to look like punks.
It wasn’t very convincing – despite the blazer and school ties, and a lame attempt to sneer, they haven’t got around to cutting their hair or (criminally) shaving off the ‘tache – but it was for a good cause, the profits (such as they were) funding their own club called Gigi’s.
Now that I’m reading up on them, I realise I have heard them after all, when their song Disaster Movie featured on the first album ever released by Beggars Banquet – a punk compilation album Streets.
The best track for me is the third one here – the first one on Side 2 of the Don’t Tax Me EP – called Fascist DJ (which you can find at 7.54), a song written for and about a popular Scottish radio DJ called Tom Ferrie, who (like so many at the time) loudly and repeatedly dismissed punk as worthless.
For me there is a rudimentary charm and authenticity to all of them.