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The Outcasts: The Punk Singles Collection

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Album Review

Belfast's Outcasts are most frequently invoked as one of the bands that flourished around the slipstream of Good Vibrations labelmates the Undertones. In fact, single for single, song for song, the Outcasts far outrank their better-known peers, as this 25-track collection swiftly proves. Opening with the three tracks that made up the Outcasts' "Frustration" debut single (on their own It label) in March 1978, the collection then races on through that peerless run of three Good Vibrations 45s — "Just Another Teenage Rebel," "The Cops Are Comin'," and "Self Conscious Over You" (the title track, of course, to the band's peerless debut album, in December 1979). From there, the collection slips into the dog days of the band, label-hopping between GBH ("Magnum Force") and another vanity project, Outcasts Only ("Programme Love" and "Angel Face"), Abstract ("Nowhere Left to Run"), and, finally, New Rose. Two last 45s ("Seven Deadly Sins" and "1969") marked just how far the band had traveled over the past seven years, but they still pack all the hallmarks of the classic Outcasts sound, to remind listeners once again of the Outcasts' greatest claim to fame. They really were better than the 'Tones.


Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '60s

One of several American garage bands to use the Outcasts name in the '60s, this Long Island, NY outfit was a very typical act of the era, performing the usual garage raunch, White soul, Monkees-like pop, and Donovanish flower power. They only issued two singles, but an entire album of material was fabricated for release in the 1980s by embellishing the officially released cuts with live performances and previously...
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