Saturday, July 23, 2022

VA - Jon Savage's 1977-1979, Symbols Clashing Everywhere (2 x CD's)


1977 - 1979 ROCK

VA - Jon Savage's 1977-1979, Symbols Clashing Everywhere (2 x CD's)

A cross-genre fertilisation of Punk, Post-Punk, Electronica, Dub, Euro Disco and unique one-offs – a reflection of what Jon Savage was listening to in the late 70's.  The seventh in my series of Ace singles comps reaches the years 1977-79. Unlike the earlier 70's, when I’d been streamed into the rock world, I’d started to listen to a wider variety of music during that time – punk, obviously, but also the beginning of post-punk, early homegrown electronica, European synth disco, dub, a bit new wave, and unique one-offs such as Subway Sect’s ‘Don’t Split It’ or the Lines’ ‘White Night’ – that represents a turbulent, highly creative period that reflected a divided, increasingly harsh world outside.

It was the late 70's, with symbols clashing everywhere, and I was in the thick of it – having moved from fan and consumer to practitioner – first with Sounds from April 1977 onwards, and then with Melody Maker from October 1978 on. Moving from small live reviews and record reviews to longer interviews, I started by covering punk and then moved to historical psychedelia, reggae and dub, American and British independent records and New Musick, the November 1977 Sounds feature I co-edited with Jane Suck about the electronic future.  As you’d expect, I was sent dozens of records from within those genres. A mix of punk, reggae, dub, independent experimentation – including late 70s psychedelia – and increasing amounts of electronica was my staple during those years. Reggae and dub came from my experience of living in London: that’s what you heard all over North Kensington, Shepherd’s Bush and in shops like Acme Attractions, run by Don Letts and Jeanette Lee. Rough Trade regularly carried reggae imports, and I’d go there most weeks.

Unlike most compilations from this period, which focus on just one genre – almost always punk – “Symbols Clashing Everywhere”, as its title suggests, contains a mix of different styles and genres co-existing, informing and occasion-ally clashing: and that’s without any funk or high disco (I stand accused and corrected). In accordance with all the previous volumes, all of these 46 tracks were released on single – the perfect medium for a fast-moving, incredibly exciting and productive period. (Ace)



Track lists


01 Bo Jangles Prophesy Reveal 3:40

02 Damned Neat Neat Neat 2:42

03 Prince Far I Heavy Manners 3:13

04 Boys Soda Pressing 2:49

05 Adverts Quick Step 3:18

06 Ultravox! Young Savage 2:59

07 Space Magic Fly 4:17

08 Pere Ubu The Modern Dance 3:31

09 Generation X Day By Day 2:05

10 Giorgio Utopia - Me Giorgio 3:26

11 Iggy Pop The Passenger 4:42

12 John Cooper Clarke Suspended Sentence 2:51

13 Revolutionaries Bamba In Dub 3:44

14 Joe Gibbs & The Professionals No Bones For The Dogs 3:51

15 999 Emergency 2:42

16 Brian Eno King's Lead Hat 3:56

17 Vic Godard & The Subway Sect Don't Split It 4:35

18 B-52's 52 Girls 3:25

19 Buzzcocks Moving Away From The Pulsebeat 5:40

20 Penetration Neverr 2:15

21 Normal Warm Leatherette 3:24

22 Suicide I Remember 3:10

23 Undertones True Confessions 1:52


01 Human League Being Boiled 3:51

02 Lines White Night 3:26

03 Devo Come Back Jonee 3:24

04 Diodes Tired Of Waking Up Tired 2:54

05 Siouxsie & The Banshees Voices 5:37

06 Scritti Politti 28/8/78 2:39

07 Cabaret Voltaire The Set Up 4:48

08 Cramps Human Fly 2:14

09 Talking Heads Found A Job 5:01

10 Middle Class Situations 1:47

11 Nigel Simpkins Times Encounter 1:54

12 Members Handling The Big Jets 4:04

13 Suzannes Hippie 1:50

14 Pop Group 3.38 3:39

15 X-Ray Spex Warrior In Woolworths 3:05

16 Gary Numan & Tubeway Army Are 'friends' Electric? 5:22

17 A Certain Ratio All Night Party 3:15

18 Telex Pakmoväst 3:40

19 Monochrome Set Eine Symphonie Des Grauens 2:22

20 Wire A Question Of Degree 3:10

21 Slits I Heard It Through The Grapevine 4:00

22 Lipstick Killers Hindu Gods (Of Love) 3:21

23 Sheila B. Devotion Spacer 3:29




  1. BB, you just keep on impressing with these compilations, thank you.

    1. HI StoneRose.
      Glad you are finding these appealing.

  2. I love the inclusion of the Lipstick Killers, so many of these overseas 70's punk comps hardly ever feature any Aussie bands

  3. wow. i have wished this compilation for months. thank you, thank you

    1. Wishes come true sometimes, markoslorca.

  4. The title from "Hong Kong Garden" - Siouxsie & The Banshees

    More top notch stuff here


    1. It goes with the theme of recent times, Stephen.

  5. How about Australian "Alternative" music, particularly around this time?