The Damned – Damned Damned Damned.

The first U.K. Punk band to release a single and album were possibly the best U.K.Punk outfit too.

Everything about Damned Damned Damned captures the cartoon punk the band personified.

The front and back sleeve just looks like how the band sound somehow. The Stiff label also looks just great.

The Damned are one of my all-time favourite bands. Gigs by The Damned, especially when Captain Sensible is present see banter the like of which other bands could never emulate.

Damned Damned Damned is the bands best record. It is, in many ways, a perfect LP. Taking elements of The Stooges and racking up the speed and tomfoolery the songs are what makes the album tick.

Neat Neat Neat (James) is just that. A perfect single that kicks off the album. Urgent. Sing-a-long. Pogo inducing.

Fan Club (James) slows the album down straight away. A seedier sound is pulled off well and the group echo The Stooges and manage to sound like that bands punkier younger siblings yet no worse with it.

I Fall (James) is urgent. It shows the band as a unit. 4 equal players. Vanian sounds confident with his clear sneers. Rat Scabies rattles the drum kit with brutal clarity. When the guitar streaks Brian James showcases what a great punk guitarist he is too.

Born To Kill (James) sounds like it must be a cover version, but it is not. A laid back track that is still charged with a Stooges like charm.

Stab Yor Back (Scabies) is a drum / vocal driven short epic. Cartooney yet slightly sinister too.

Feel The Pain (James) returns to a sleazy sound. Somehow echoing The Velvet Underground yet pulling that sound into a late 70’s Punk Classic.

New Roses (James) is a structured Punk classic. So good that it somehow conjures up 60’s garage whilst clearly being the first ever Punk record too. A Gem.

Fish (James) is a favourite of mine. Fast. The track builds to a guitar run that will still make you want to jump around in ways House Of Pain could only dream about.

See Her Tonite (James) is sharp and speedy. A love song with hooks that feel like they are punching you, squarely in the face. The track rises in urgency and peaks with a frantic climax. Freaking brilliant.

1 Of The 2 (James) and the album is going out in a blaze of real glory. Now you are engaged with the album The Damned pull out all of the stops. Fury in those damned drums. A short track that fits so much in its timespan – it really is an overlooked classic song.

So Messed Up (James) keeps the frantic pace going strong. As it phases out it checks itself and comes back even stronger. Another classic.

I Feel Alright (The Stooges) and the band finally reveal their clear inspiration. A cover of 1970 damn near betters a song you could never better. A homage, yet The Damned stake their claim. It closes the album in tribute mayhem.

For me, Damned Damned Damned is better than any album by The Clash or the Sex Pistols. It’s tongue-in-cheek yet sparks a scene that would be the best genre of music probably of my lifetime. Whilst the first Ramones album is more important / better, did any band encompass fun and mayhem like The Damned?

 

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