1978 Now

1978 Now

This is the new recording of the songs from Subway Sect’s debut album. It was originally recorded at the tail end of 1977 in a Gerrard Street basement, in London, called Gooseberry Studios. It was to be called Subway Sect and would have been on Bernie Rhodes’ (our manager) label Braik Records. It had Bobby Ward on drums, Paul Myers on bass and Rob Symmons on guitar, with added backing vocals and percussion from the Black Arabs. It also featured Dan Kelleher of the 101ers on keyboards on a couple of songs - don't ask which ones though!

The Slits were already there recording their debut LP, with Dennis Bovell producing. We had Mickey Foote (who had produced the first Clash album) and Bernard Rhodes. The Slits had nights and we had days. The results of our efforts were never mixed we were told it was because we weren't good enough on our instruments and shortly after this the group were sacked by manager B. Rhodes, who offered me a job as his house songwriter. He said he wanted to recreate a Motown type set-up with several different bands, first of which was the Black Arabs.

We always assumed the studio was owed money and that was why the tapes were never handed over for the mixing. At the same time I was sent back out on tour with a new look Subway Sect to support the Buzzcocks. Bobby Ward was still on drums but Colin Scott took over on bass and Johnny Britten was the new guitarist.

All possibilities of locating the original tapes were dashed following a flood at Gooseberry Studios. Monitor mixes of some of the sessions have appeared on various releases, however these were very rough versions so I decided it was time to record these songs as they sounded in the 70s - simply because they deserve to be properly recorded and released.

So, in spring 2007 we went into K2 Studios in Kingston, Surrey to record again.

The group was comprised of Mark Laff on drums, who left the Sect at the end of the White Riot Tour to join Generation X; Trigger on bass and Leigh Curtis on rhythm guitar. The original bassist Paul Myers guests on three tracks.

All the original songs have been included except Ambition. In its place we have included the original version of Rock and Roll Even, which has never been released.
Vic Godard



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