Highlighting five influential LPs…

Having reformed in 2010, influential post-punk outfit The Pop Group are not just in it again for the money. The band is working on a new LP, while a collection of remastered early tracks, ‘We Are Time’ – first released in 1980 – is freshly on shelves via Freaks R Us.

From the new compilation comes a previously unreleased version of breakthrough single ‘She Is Beyond Good An Evil’ – previously a Clash Track of the Day. You can hear it below – right ahead of frontman Mark Stewart and guitarist Gareth Sager reflecting on five important LPs that continue to shape the way they make music. Some old, some so new they’re not even out. Impressive.

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Iggy & The Stooges – ‘Raw Power’ (1973)

“For me this  is the greatest combination of thug and academic. Art, this is what the Stones, Bowie, Zep were meant to sound like to me at age 13. Every track had something mysterious going on, but the music just kept pulsating. I never worked out a word he sings!” Gareth Sager

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Sun Ra Quartet – ‘Other Voices, Other Blues’ (1978)

“‘Space Is The Place’ was the first thing I heard of Sun Ra with a 40-piece Arkestra, but this is just four players and they groove like a mother*cker, their feet in the mud their heads in space. The variety in the playing from just four guys is astonishing – like John Gilmore, who was a big influence on Coltrane.” Gareth Sager

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Sleaford Mods – ‘Divide And Exit’ (2014)

“On zero-hours contracts, Sleaford Mods are austerity attack dogs in needle parks. [Jason] Williamson is spitting diamonds, demolishing the zombification of sink estate, pramface, Jeremy Kyle Britain. The underclass shall have their revenge.  A broken society’s worst nightmare, we are, we are, we are the Mods.” Mark Stewart

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Cockney Rebel – ‘The Human Menagerie’ (1973)

“Back in the day life was a drag (queen). The nuclear winter was brightened by skinheads in satin, with blood red boots. Steve Harley served up a decadent existential feast and helped me taste the void. He was no glam toy, Pilot were his only peers. He Came Up And Saw Me And Made Me Smile (‘Judy Teen’) was the queen of the scene. Classic Sykomodo.  In this holy city zoo we are the droogs.” Mark Stewart

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Dean Blunt – ‘Black Metal’ (2014)

“This is out next month. New guy on the scene, who seems to be breaking all the rules and taking an unpredictable take on things and coming up with the goods. Blunt just takes sound things and twists them to his bent.” Gareth Sager

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Order The Pop Group’s ‘We Are Time’ here, and stream it above. Find the band online here, and see them live as follows:

21st – Bodega Social, Sheffield
22nd – Gorilla, Manchester
23rd – Anson Rooms, Bristol
24th – Brudenell Social Club, Leeds
25th – Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar, Brighton
26th – Islington Assembly Hall, London

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