In 1986, Pop Will Eat Itself burst onto the UK independent scene with a flurry of energetic, punk infused singles, this set charts this first year of the band’s career, including seven previously unheard demos and live cuts from the band’s own archives and a number of later b-sides. Including a previously unreleased song (Summer Girl), early incarnations of tracks re-recorded and released in later years and demos of the impossible to find debut EP by Wild and Wandering (the name the band operated under before becoming PWEI).
With full co-operation and support from the band members, and including both an essay and sleeve-notes from keyboardist/guitarist Adam Mole, this is a great way to hear what PWEI sounded like on their way to the hip-hop influenced band that they turned into. You can hear the punk rock mixed into their sound, giving a sound close to Jesus And The Mary Chain in spots, and then the slow move towards more of the sound that made then bigger names in the press in a few years. The sound changes into a more electronic, but still indie sound that is exciting to hear even now. The band was always one that I had listened to back in the ’80s, but never got really big into until This Is the Day…This Is the Hour…This Is This! came out and I saw the video for “Wise Up Sucker.” A few months later I saw the video for “Love Missile F1-11” on Much Music and loved them even more, and a fan to this day was born. I have played their songs a lot of times while DJing and always look forward to hearing anything that I haven’t heard before, so this double CD collection is perfect. It gathers up songs that I didn’t have before and tons that I’ve never heard and put a smile on my face. Yes the songs aren’t all from the original tapes because a lot was lost, but the sound has been cleaned up and sounds great, plus it shows them at an earlier time with the demos and a live song, stuff you may never have had a chance to hear before.
This is a true treasure trove for fans and shows just how much fun music was back then, not all goofy pop songs, some people actually played their hearts out…these guys for example. I’m glad that Cherry Red has put out PWEI’s music with such care and I hope that people go out and get these excellent collections.