24 Comments
Jun 5Liked by Kevin Alexander

Wow, haven't thought about Wire in a very long time! I have this album somewhere in my collection. I'll have to pull it and give it a spin and revisit.

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I'll be curious to hear what you think once you've had a chance to dust it off.

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Appreciated as always Kevin. I am listening back to the album for first time in a while as I type. Dan Epstein and I are about to record a podcast on Sandanista! which has a similar hit-or-miss reputation. But you can only be grateful that groups exist(ed) willing to take such risks.

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Thank you, Tony!

Sandanista! is a great comparison reputation-wise. I'm looking forward to hearing the two of you talk in-depth about the record.

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Jun 5·edited Jun 5Liked by Kevin Alexander

I've never checked this record out, so thanks for the heads up! I'm overdue in revisiting Wire. Like a lot of folks my age, I learned about them in college via REM's cover of "Strange." Pink Flag might be a perfect record.

Also, I was once a 95-pound point guard whose main skills were a wicked handle and courage (aka the willingness to try shit). Love that!

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I love it! I hope your coahces appreciated that skillset.

Pink Flag is an all-timer, and (for me) this is right up there. Fair warning, though; the two are light years apart stylistically.

P.S. I love R.E.M.s cover of Strange more than the original. It's one of my faves on 'Document.'

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I'm a big fan of Pink Flag/Chairs Missing/154 but I don't think I have never listened to this record?!! Gonna do it. Thanks for putting it on my radar.

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Right on! I hope you like it. As noted upthread, just be ready for it to be wildly different than those 3.

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Jun 5Liked by Kevin Alexander

I was working for US Mute at that time. You not believe how people reacted. "Mixed Bag" is a kind way to put it. I loved it so much I decided that I was going to find a way to quit my job and make a go at a music career. I am so glad I did.

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Oh to be a fly on the wall during those discussion! I can imagine a bit of how it went. And how cool that it inspired you to make a career pivot!

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Jun 5Liked by Kevin Alexander

No finer compliment I can provide than to say that your piece has inspired me to listen to the album today, with fresh and more informed... ears.

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This made my morning! I'm interested on hearing if your opinion of the record has /hasn't changed.

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Jun 5Liked by Kevin Alexander

PS. Had to mention Colin Newman's oft under appreciated album 'A-Z', which is basically Wire's forth album. No really, I think it's that good.

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Yes! Great catch.

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Great read, Kevin! "IBTABA" is completely unknown for me. I've got a weekend road trip coming up and I'm eager to check this out!

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Right on! I hope you like it. Where're you off to?

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Oh just driving from the Seattle area over to eastern Washington to visit my wife’s family. Basically a trip to healing pile of dirt

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Haha. I've made that drive. You're not wrong.

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Jun 6Liked by Kevin Alexander

Great to see this fantastic album by Wire highlighted. Thanks for doing so.

Wire are one of the best who don't get the recognition they should receive. Not quite well known enough to be mentioned with others from the punk, post-punk era and seen as fair game for others to mine riffs from their back catalogue - see 'Elastica'

They have continued to release albums over the last decade and I would suggest another excellent 3 album run of theirs is 'Wire' (2015), 'Nocturnal Koreans' (2016) and 'Silver/Lead' (2017). They may not compare to that initial 3 album run but they exhibit a band still at the top of their game.

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Thank you! I'm glad you enjoyed it. And you're right; Silver/Lead is fantastic. I still need to give the other two a close listen.

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Jun 7Liked by Kevin Alexander

I want a t-shirt that says “Don’t be afraid to try shit” ♥️

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Lol. I should open a little merch & make some!

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Yes please!

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Jun 8Liked by Kevin Alexander

So Wire’s one of those bands I’ve heard of but never really listened to. I sampled IBTABA and enjoyed some of what I heard so I’m going back to the beginning. Just fired up Pink Flag and plan to get through the first three albums over the weekend. Thanks for providing the motivation to dig into their catalog!

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