Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Snuff: Not Listening (1989)

I spent most of '88 with my head back in '77. Sure there was good new shit in that time but the overwhelming tone of the times was a downer. Pop-metal and synth-pop ruled the airwaves and speed-metal and jangle-pop owned the underground. Regardless of your feelings for those underground genres (personally, distaste for the former, appreciation for the latter) they seemed like products of a punk rock divorce, wherein one party got the speed and the aggression and the other side got the hooks and the smarts.

But 1989, speed, aggression, hooks and smarts regrouped, in little pockets around the world. In that year we had a phalanx of under-produced but ass-kicking American 7" and 12"'s by Jawbreaker, Mr. T Experience, Sloppy Seconds, Operation Ivy, Screeching Weasel, Bad Religion and Green Day plus stellar album albums by Canada's The Doughboys, Australia's The Hard-Ons as well as the Britain's pop-punk trifecta: Mega City Four, Leatherface and Snuff.

While there is a modest-sized group of bands with drummers who do part-time lead vocals, like The Doughboys, Snuff's Duncan Redmonds' plays the front-man from the backseat all the time. Such a skill puts Redmonds in a rare class of full-time lead-singing drummers, including the aforementioned Hard-Ons and later-period Genesis. While Keish de Silva was eventually replaced in The Hard-Ons and Phil Collins had to bring in Bill Buford for help, Redmonds stands alone with his near-superhuman ability be able to drum so frenetically and still sing just fine.

The first Snuff e.p. from 1989, which definitely caused a stir in North America, defined the band''s sound, melodic yelling, frantic drumming, blaring guitars and lyrics that dealt in a matters of a personal nature. The band recorded no cover songs for their debut, produced by Mekons leader Jon Langsford, that crucial part of their style would have to wait till the full-length album later that year.

So was Snuff one of the best things to come out of 1989? Let us know in the COMMENTS section (which is where you'll find the link for the Not Listening e.p.)

Support the band!



Fat Wreck-Chords




  1. It's the start of a new series.

    That means you always appreciated feedback is needed.

    While we here at MRML enjoy your feedback throughout are manic-compulsive runs, we know that people like to get in their opinion on the ground floor, so to speak.

    So whether you have an opinion about the state of music in 1989 or an opinion about Snuff's origins or subsequent evolution, this is your chance to speak.

    Do remember that it is you and your feedback that helps to shape the amount of rarities we are able to post

    Thank you.

    And now it's time to go get Snuffed


  2. superb stuff.

    have been guilty of not leaving feedback, sorry

    hope it is as good as the leatherface series

  3. I was possibly the youngest punk in my town in 77, loved it then, love it now as I near my 50th

    recently discovered Snuff through the power of the Internet and blogs and have to say that they come close to making me feel like I am a kid all over again

    thanks for the post!

  4. Looking forward to revisiting Snuff. I mislaid their records years ago, which is strange cos I've never lost any others, and it's been a minor irritation as to where they went for the last 20 years.


  5. Snuff were truly excellent live - one of the best bands I saw at the Duchess of York in Leeds. Happy days...

  6. See here for a live tape from 1989:

  7. haha I hated shit like this back in '89! All I listened to back then was hardcore and thrash... today I've cut back to only about 75% hardcore and thrash, so Snuff would fit in to the other 25%... Thanks for sharing!

  8. Do remember that it is you and your feedback that helps to shape the amount of rarities we are able to post

    Thank you.

  9. kudos--It's nice to be snuffed.

  10. I will be so very happy if you can post whatever release it was of theirs that had the song "Den Den".

  11. Was it the best record of 1989? That I cannot say but does it to this day make me grin like God's-own-idiot when I hear it? Yes! For that reason I still listen to the first few Snuff records nearly everyday. The first ep through Reach nary left my stereo years ago. Absolutely great records that are still as fresh today as they were upon their release!

  12. Cheers for this. Saw them when this came out in Perth and they were fantastic.

  13. Snuff were the ones who bridged the void of the '86/87 punk implosion and made music "fun" again for me.

    Going to love this manic-compulsive run Jeffen, because it is one of the bands that really mattered to me.


    @DaveGeek try finding the K-Records 'International Hip Swing' comp on iTunes for Den Den.

    1 minute and 28 seconds of pure fun for 99¢!

    If you need a really need to hear the song about snails, here's a live version...

  14. Power, speed, tunes, they were great!!

  15. Anon
    I hope it's meeting expectations (and don;t worry it's not over).

    yeah Snuff have that energy that gives me strength.

    I know all about records that go missing...

    Amazing live band!

    Thanks for the link, I put it in the Snuff live post.

    It's funny how much more we appreciate the past once we've experienced the future.

    Thanks...I think.




    "Snuff were the ones who bridged the void of the '86/87 punk implosion and made music "fun" again for me."
    Any chance of the Yellow Car write-up? I think it'd be awesome.

    power, speed tunes - sums it up.


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