In January 1977, the EP Spiral Scratch introduced what would become one of the world’s most iconic punk bands the Buzzcocks – as well effectively creating the template for indie music releasing.
To celebrate this 40th anniversary landmark, Domino Recordings is reissuing Spiral Scatch on 7’’ vinyl on January 27 and will follow that in March with the Buzzcocks mk.1 box set, which will include Time’s Up, a collection of early demos previously only available as a bootleg.
The original line-up of the Buzzcocks featured Howard Devoto (vocals), Pete Shelley (guitar), Steve Diggle (bass) and John Maher (drums), with their formation following the Sex Pistols’ now legendary show at the Lesser Free Trade Hall in Manchester, which had been organised by Shelley and Devoto.
The Time’s Up demos – which include early takes on the likes of Orgasm Addict and Love Battery –were recorded live in October 1976, with the 4-track Spiral Scratch recorded by Martin Zero – aka Martin Hannett – in December. The Buzzcocks decided to release the record themselves, pressing up 1,000 vinyl copies which quickly sold out, making it one of punk’s most collectable records and inspiring a new wave of indie labels.
Devoto left the band soon after the release of Spiral Scratch to form Magazine but the Buzzcocks went on to become one of Britain’s most successful and beloved bunk outfits and are still together.