Kris Needs Presents…Dirty Water: The Birth Of Punk Attitude (Year Zero Records)

Compiled by punk-era ZigZag scribe Kris Needs, Dirty Water spends two discs attempting to trace the roots of punk as both a musical art-form and an attitude. As such, it covers a wide spectrum of antagonizers and adrenaline junkies, from high-energy Detroit rockers (The Stooges, MC5, The Up and Death), garage bands (The Seeds, The Standells, The Monks), UK glam (The Hollywood Brat, T.Rex, Mott The Hoople, The Jook) and a host of others who defy categorization (The Silver Apples, David Peel and The Last Poets). As with any compilation attempting to cover an entire scene there are some glaring omissions (The Modern Lovers, The 101’ers, Hawkwind, and Alice Cooper) and some questionable inclusions (Sun Ra, Gene Vincent, The Silhouettes, and David Peel). Needs’ desire to avoid using the same old songs means there’s no Ramones, Pistols, or Clash, but it also means that some familiar bands are represented by unfamiliar songs. So, while The Stooges and Suicide are both included, the twelve minutes of Iggy and company vamping through “Do You Want My Love” in concert and a lo-fi demo of Vega and Rev’s “Do It Nice” offer more in terms of historical significance than listening pleasure. Even though there are quibbles, (again, no Modern Lovers???) these discs make you think about what punk really is, and I’ll always recommend any album that includes “(I’m) Stranded” by the Saints, “Subway Train” by The New York Dolls, and “Do It” by The Pink Fairies.


      cd 1

  1. Dirty Water (The Standells)
  2. Evil Hoodoo (The Seeds)
  3. Garbage (The Deviants)
  4. Do It (Pink Fairies)
  5. Blue Jean Bop (Gene Vincent)
  6. Teenage Head (Flamin’ Groovies)
  7. Elemental Child – LIVE (T. Rex)
  8. I Hate You (The Monks)
  9. Oo Oo Rudi (The Jook)
  10. Moon Upstairs (Mott The Hoople)
  11. Space Age Love (Zolar X)
  12. Rocket Number Nine (Sun Ra)
  13. Rocket Reducer No. 62 (Rama Lama Fa Fa Fa) – LIVE (MC5)
  14. Sisters Sisters – LIVE (The UP)
  15. Politicians In My Eyes (Death)
  16. Do You Want My Love? – LIVE (The Stooges)

      cd 2

  1. Up Against The Wall (David Peel & The Lower East Side)
  2. Confusion (Silver Apples)
  3. Get A Job (The Silhouettes)
  4. Do It Nice (Suicide)
  5. Subway Train (The New York Dolls)
  6. On The Subway (The Last Poets)
  7. The Hot City Symphony Part 1 (Vambo) (The Sensational Alex Harvey Band)
  8. A Little Bit Of Urban Rock (Third World War)
  9. Roxette (Dr. Feelgood)
  10. Nadir’s Big Chance (Peter Hammill)
  11. Outside My Door (Can)
  12. Hurricane Fighter Plane (Red Krayola)
  13. I’m Never Gonna Kill Myself Again (Rocket From The Tombs)
  14. Teengenerate (The Dictators)
  15. I Need You (The Hollywood Brats)
  16. I’m Stranded (The Saints)
  17. Two Sevens Clash (Culture)

Kris Needs Presents…Dirty Water 2: More Birth Of Punk Attitude

A compilation of the music that influenced punk’s sound and/or attitude is always going to be worth a listen at the very least. When the person picking the tracks is renowned British punk writer Kris Needs, and he’s getting input from Alan Vega and Bobby Gillespie, it’s going to be great – and Volume 2 of this hopefully ongoing series definitely is. Two more discs, with thirty-nine songs from some of the best rule-breakers from garage rock, reggae, jazz, glam, krautrock, early rock’n’roll and folk, among other genres. The set also comes with a 76-page book, which unfortunately wasn’t sent to writers, that probably gives some context around the inclusion of seemingly non-punk (yet still enjoyable) entries from Parliament, Big Star, Blue Cheer, Dizzy Gillespie, and The Silhouettes, to name a few. Perhaps they also explain how a series of proto-punk music can run seventy-two songs deep without a single Modern Lovers song. A criminal omission! Those quibbles aside, the music Needs and co. “did” select is great, from the creepy early Suicide demo of “Creature Feature,” to Junior Murvin’s timeless reggae classic “Police and Thieves,” to Patti Smith’s harrowing tale of blue collar angst, “Piss Factory,” there isn’t a single song you’ll want to skip.


CD1 :

  2. THE HUMAN EXPRESSION – Love At Psychedelic Velocity
  3. DEATH – Freakin’ Out
  5. THE SILHOUETTES – Headin’ For The Poorhouse
  6. SUICIDE – Creature Feature
  7. THE VELVET UNDERGROUND – I’m Waiting For The Man
  8. PATTI SMITH – Piss Factory
  9. JAYNE COUNTY – Man Enough To Be A Woman
  10. DAVID BOWIE – Suffragette City
  11. MOTT THE HOOPLE – Crash Street Kids
  12. KILBURN & THE HIGH ROADS – Rough Kids
  13. BO DIDDLEY – Hey! Bo Diddley , STACKWADDY – Roadrunner
  15. DOCTORS OF MADNESS – Waiting
  16. BIG STAR – In The Street
  17. FLAMIN’ GROOVIES – Shake Some Action
  18. PARLIAMENT – Oh Lord Why Lord
  19. ALBERT AYLER – Wizard.

CD2 :

  1. FAUST – It’s A Rainy Day [Sunshine Girl]
  2. EDDIE COCHRAN – C’mon Everybody
  3. BLUE CHEER – Summertime Blues
  4. THE MISUNDERSTOOD – Children Of The Sun
  5. THE UNRELATED SEGMENTS – The Story Of My Life
  6. THE TIDAL WAVES – Action! Speaks Louder Than Words
  7. MC5 – Black To Comm
  8. EDGAR BROUGHTON BAND – Out Demons Out
  9. WOODY GUTHRIE – Goin’ Down The Road Feelin’ Bad
  10. JOHN OTWAY – Beware Of The Flowers
  11. THE ZAKARY THAKS – Bad Girl
  14. THE GODZ – Turn On
  15. THE HOLY MODAL ROUNDERS – Indian War Whoop
  17. JUNIOR MURVIN – Police And Thieves
  18. RUDEMENTS – Imagination
  19. THE VICE CREEMS – Danger Love