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Here We Stand

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Album Review

Thirty years on and Cock Sparrer is still exactly what you'd want them to be. Exploding out of the speakers with all the energy and anger of bands one-third their age, but with the experience to know that you need more than that to survive, Here We Stand is defiantly first-wave punk, but shot through with the kind of balls that actually make you glad it's 2008. The opening "Too Late," all chiming Buzzcocks guitar and factory-fodder lyrics, gets things off to an astounding start — imagine the Small Faces if Steve Marriott teamed up with the Clash; and then imagine they made an entire album together, because that's where Here We Stand is heading. "Gotta Get Out," "True to Yourself," "Better Than This" — most albums kick off with a frenzied one-two punch, but Cock Sparrer not only keeps it up for song after song, they up the ante as well; "Did You Have a Nice Life Without Me" isn't simply an exhilarating noise, it also packs a sentimental punch that will leave you wondering where the rest of your own life went. Fourteen songs and not a sour note in sight. Back when Cock Sparrer was a fledgling band, you could say that about a lot of records. These days, well, thank God somebody still remembers how to do it.


Formed: 1975 in London, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

One of the first Oi! bands, Cock Sparrer was playing loud, raw, Cockney working-class anthems as early as the first wave of British punk, although record company difficulties prevented them from issuing much material until the early '80s, when the Oi!movement was well underway. The group formed in London's East End in 1975, originally as a hard-edged pub rock combo in the vein of Dr. Feelgood. Four of the members -- vocalist Colin McFaull, guitarist Mick Beaufoy, bassist Steve Burgess, and drummer...
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Here We Stand, Cock Sparrer
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