SONG OF THE DAY Zounds – Can’t Cheat Karma


Post-punk/punk band, Zounds, originally formed in 1977 (broke in 1982 and reformed n 2007!!). Hailing from Reading, Berkshire they were part of the cassette culture of the late 70’s (this being the amateur production/distribution of recorded music on cassettes that emerged in the late 1970s).

Influenced by the likes of the Velvet Underground and the Sex Pistols, the group evolved from a number of jamming sessions with other musicians and friends in Oxford! Wasting no time, they were out gigging the same year they came together! As they evolved the band exchanged guitarists and their sound slowly became more orientated around politics, with songs about the cold war and police clashes beginning to emerge.

The band released their first album The Curse of Zounds on Rough Trade Records in 1981, recording and mixing the LP within five days! Prior to this (in 1980) came their debut release in the form of the Can’t Cheat Karma EP.  This was issued on the Crass label (founded by Essex band, Crass in 1979) who, after a chance meeting struck up a friendship with the Zounds. Both bands shared many common political views and this cemented a strong bond!

Other than this EP I don’t know too much about the Zounds, but this three-track offering is worth checking out.  Alongside War and Subvert is today’s track, Can’t Cheat Karma, and I think it’s pretty fair to say that even forty years down the road the content is still quite prevalent!? It’s quite alarming really! Yes, you can hear the Sex Pistols influence heavily exerted through vocals, but I like its punchy dynamic and fiery post-punk fevor! Check it out above.

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