Consistently underrated, The Boys remain one of the best bands of their generation. I have to thank my mate Charley here, as I’d never heard of them until he played me ‘Alternative Chartbusters’ in about 1988. Always a man of impeccable taste. This compilation album sees previously unreleased songs, original mixes and live/acoustic versions, so let’s dive in.
‘See You Later’ is a pleasantly hectic original mix from ’79, and ‘Terminal Love’ is an original mix, their first with a producer. Certainly tighter, but never knowingly slick. Radio-friendly in the best way. ‘You Can Give It’, written by Matt Dangerfield’s brother Albert, recorded in ’78, was previously on the ‘Odds And Sods’ compilation, but certainly deserves wider recognition.
‘I Love Me’, with Kid on lead vocals, is the original recording from the ‘Junk’ sessions, and ‘Rue Morgue’ is another original mix, sounding punchy and energetic. ‘Walk My Dog’ was recorded in ’80 at the Marquee studios for the session that saw ‘You Better Move On’ chosen as the single.
Their recent ‘Punk Rock Menopause’ album gets included with ‘Punk Rock Girl’, not really sounding out of place on here. ‘Waiting For The Lady’ is the original ’79 mix, rather than the one chosen for ‘To Hell With The Boys’. To my ears it sounds great, so who knows what the difference was. The mighty ‘Brickfield Nights’ is represented here in acoustic form from ’96, to fine effect.
‘Jimmy Brown’ is from the Marquee ’80 session, complete with Marquee receptionist on backing vocals, ‘Flies’ is from the ’78 Rockfield session, while a brisk ‘T.C.P’ was recorded live in China from 2015. If you don’t have any of The Boys’ albums yet, this is a good place to start. Though, be warned, it can be addictive, and you may be asking the vinyl fairy for some extra funds.
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Author: Martin Chamarette