SNUFF: Six of One, Half a Dozen of the Other 1986-2002: 2 X CD

For some reason, and I’m not quite sure, but I often forget how great Snuff can be. They’re cheeky Brits with a weird sense of humor (just look at the fuckin’ names of their albums: Demmamussabebonk? Flibbiddydibiddydob?), a longtime love of Vespas and Lambrettas, and the uncanny knack to be utterly silly yet still pull out some seriously great punk rock at the same time. It’s sometimes hard to get the pulse if they’re just that cursory and talented (let’s fuck around and play ping pong for days in the studio and cut six tracks without overdubs at the last minute, or so the story goes), or if there’s a pattern to their functional dysfunction. Snuff comes from the hairy, incestuous school of British punk that commingled and merged with Leatherface (powerful, soulful, gritty) and Wat Tyler (who have songs about Smurf sex). Well, I know this for sure, if you’ve ever liked Snuff or if you’d like an intro to a prolific band, this collection’s like a deep-sea dragnet. Washing machines get pulled up with the fish. You get many gems, some dogs; tastes will vary. The first CD is all previously released stuff that’s reasonably easy to get, but spread out over sixteen years and numerous albums. The second CD’s all more obscure: b-sides, comp tracks, tour-only releases, unreleased tracks, and ends with a trippy dub track that underscores the fact that Duncan (drummer, lead singer: same setup as The Carpenters) smokes a lot of weed. When all’s said and done, Snuff is melodic punk done right. My favorite stuff’s still the songs with the horns and organs from Potatoes and Melons at Wholesale Prices Straight from the Lockup.

 –todd (Fat)