FOLK DEVILS: Beautiful Monsters (Singles and Demo Recordings 1984-1986): LP/CD

Despite seeing Folk Devils numerous times in the ‘80s, most notably as support for the first U.K. show by Suicidal Tendencies, I never owned any of the band’s records. This release, featuring eighteen remastered tracks, reminds me why I enjoyed seeing the band back then and has finally provided me with a recording to listen to. This blues-based punk rock frequently reminds me of The Three Johns, another band that lived through the Thatcher era, a time which provided many a target for bands to aim at. Both outfits had a rhythm section which could haphazardly weave its way through songs whilst a guitar sliced and chopped its way through proceedings. The majority of songs still sound contemporary, musically and lyrically, and given the current political landscape in the U.K. it’s quite sad to reflect that little has changed in thirty years. –Rich Cocksedge (Optic Nerve, [email protected], opticnerverecordings.com)