The time has come for the duo of Bob Stanley and Pete Wiggs (of Saint Etienne) to hit the early 80s with their series of expertly curated compilations that began six years ago. With Winter of Discontent they focus, not on the current cost of living crisis, but the one back when Margaret Thatcher was prime minister (starting 1979). This was an era of DIY music – post-punk of course but also lots of weird cassette music and general experimentation.
The double-LP, out in a couple of weeks through Ace, includes well-known groups like Blue Orchids, The Fall, The Raincoats and The Mekons. But also their lesser known contemporaries like Manchester Mekon, Androids of Mu, Television Personalities, and Honey Bane‘s first band Fatal Microbes.
Among the tracks I hadn’t heard before is the amazing “Low Flying Aircraft” from Anne Bean & Paul Burrell (Pulp, 1979). The Thin Yoghurts’ “Drink Problem” (Lowther Street Runner, 1980) is also essential listening.