‘Pink Flag’ by Wire has to be one of the most influential albums of all time. Released in 1977 it came in on the forefront of the new wave of music that followed the punk explosion of ‘76. Along with the likes of Gang of Four, and The Pop Group they took punk to a new level. Attacking the scene with a more underground, visionary approach, they easily stood out from the crowd and soon became seen as a band to emulate, as opposed to just another three chord flash in the pan.
“I had this idea that I wanted to avoid things that had a particular kind of tradition,” explains singer and guitarist Colin Newman. “I thought the three-chord trick was too simplistic and that the one-chord trick would be better. Or the two chord trick where the second chord is definitely not the right chord.”
The band have been offered bags of money in the past to become part of the ‘Heritage Rock’ industry, get the original line up back together and stick to just playing their 70’s back catalogue. But rather than fall into the trap of becoming a clichéd gang of look back bores, the band have held true to their original ethos, refused to conform and continuously sought to question the norm. It’s a trait that has ensured they have remained relevant and challenging to this day.
Wire have just released ‘Joust And Jostle’ from their forthcoming album, simply titled Wire.
Due for release via pinkflag on April13th, the album is Wire’s13th studio album and is the first time that latest addition to the group, guitarist Matt Simms, has been involved in the whole creative process from the onset. The success of Wire in the early days could be put down to the collaborative efforts of four distinctly individual personas, with the introduction of Matt another distinct individual is now adding yet another dimension; “With Matt there was a really new dynamic that had appeared in the group’s sound and that was something we wanted to capture, utilise and be creative with,” says original bassist Graham Lewis.
To coincide with the release of the album the band will also be taking their music on the road, kicking off with a double header headliner in Brighton followed by a five night top billing at Drill Festival at London’s Lexington.
Wire blew me away the first time I heard Pink Flag, they’ve continued to impress ever since and I’m more than a tad excited about this release and the opportunity to catch them live. As Colin Newman puts it “Wire do this thing so well…”
See Wire live:
April 12-13 – UK – BRIGHTON – Prince Albert
April 14-15-16-17-18 – UK – LONDON – DRILL : LEXINGTON (http://drillfestival.com)
April 20 – UK – SOUTHAMPTON – Engine Rooms
April 21 – UK – RAMSGATE – Music Hall
April 22 – UK – NOTTINGHAM – Rescue Rooms
April 23 – UK – LIVERPOOL – Kazimer
April 24 – UK – HEBDEN BRIDGE – Trades Club
April 26 – UK – ABERDEEN – Lemon Tree
April 27- UK – GLASGOW – King Tuts
April 28 – UK – LEEDS – Brudenell Social Club
April 29 – UK – MANCHESTER – Club Academy
April 30 – UK – BRISTOL – Fleece
May 27 – USA – SEATTLE, WA – Nuemos
May 29 – USA – SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Slim’s
May 30 – USA – LOS ANGELES, CA – The Echoplex
June 02 – USA – CAMBRIDGE, MA – The Sinclair
June 03 – USA – BROOKLYN, NY – Music Hall of Williamsburg
June 04 – USA – NEW YORK, NY – Bowery Ballroom
June 05 – USA – PHILADELPHIA, PA – Union Transfer
June 06 – USA – WASHINGTON, DC – Black Cat
June 08 – USA – CLEVELAND, OH – Beachland Ballroom
June 09 – USA – DETROIT, MI – Majestic Theatre
June 10 – USA – LOUISVILLE, KY – Headliners