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Being ‘punk before punk’ is quite a claim for a band, especially one in the “I’m sorry, who?” category. But have a listen to this, look at the years said band were operational and consider this: Iggy only beat them to it by a year or two, and the Ramones were nowhere in sight, let alone the Clash et al. In 1971, Detroit proto-punk trio Death stomped forth with their no frills, raucous, musical insolence – clattering tin can drums, neck-bending guitar and gives-a-fuck vocals, paving the way for the likes of The Damned, The Buzzcocks, and later the hardcore scene. This record is packed with crunchy, snot-nosed punk, with the odd bluesy bass line and psychedelic riff – Death drawing on their influences and carving sharp, new, lasting impressions. This is definitely one of the best bands you’ve never heard of.

By Polly Rappaport

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