Punk

The Clash of Civilisations

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John Rees remembers Joe Strummer of The Clash.

The Clash arrived on the battlefield of the mid-1970s in the nick of time. Unemployment was climbing, real wages were falling for the first time in postwar British history, Labour was imposing welfare cuts and the Nazis were on the rise.

In rock music, as it was then called, the radical charge of the 1960s had been dissipated. 'Progressive rock' was overblown, made dull by its concept album, rock opera pretensions.

The Jubilee: No Future in England's Dream

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Punk was the perfect antidote to the 1977 jubilee, because it stuck two fingers up to the establishment.

By now you are probably sick of the hype surrounding the queen's golden jubilee. Even before the royal beano began, newspaper columnists talked of a country united. Many have evoked the celebrations that took place during the queen's silver jubilee in 1977. But the country was never united. One 7-inch single helped piss on the queen's parade.

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