BUZZCOCKS, THE: Spiral Scratch/Time’s Up Box Set: LP/CD

Super lavish reissue of the band’s debut single, along with a set of demos that were heavily bootlegged at the time. The Scratch single has been widely heralded as the first DIY punk single. Maybe The Saints beat them by a hair, but that’s debatable. Produced by Martin Hannett (pre-Joy Division), most of the songs recorded were first takes. It sold out its initial pressing of 1,000 and would go on to sell over 16,000. Time’s Up was recorded quickly as well, featuring mostly originals except for a Captain Beefheart and Troggs cover. But this lineup was doomed. Howard Devoto left the band after eleven gigs, much to the relief of Steve Diggle, who had no desire to play bass guitar. This box set collects all this information and more in a beautiful package. You can get these two releases separately if you desire. But this is a box set done right. Grab it if you can. –Sean Koepenick (Domino, dominorecordco.com)