999 - Separates (Cover Artwork)


999: SeparatesSeparates (1978)
United Artists

Reviewer Rating: 4
User Rating:

Contributed by: feeeding5000feeeding5000
(others by this writer | submit your own)

What? No 999? Well, guess it's up to me to write a review, then. Separates is the long-running punk band's second album, and is arguably their best, and certainly their most famous. The album opens with the insanely catchy, Stones-influenced "Homicide," which became a minor hit in the U.K. It's a.
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What? No 999? Well, guess it's up to me to write a review, then. Separates is the long-running punk band's second album, and is arguably their best, and certainly their most famous.

The album opens with the insanely catchy, Stones-influenced "Homicide," which became a minor hit in the U.K. It's a little slow, and the album never really gets up to the average punk tempo, but that just differentiates it from other `77 punk and early Oi! bands.

Next up is "Tulse Hill Night," which has a catchy chorus, and reminds me of slow `90s pop-punk. The next track of note is "Let's Face It," which manages to be a little faster, and just as catchy as the other songs. The songs are basically in this pattern, sounding like a slow Buzzcocks, with a little bit of Stiff Little Fingers mixed in.

The peppiest songs are "High Energy Plan" and the CD bonus track "Soldier," both of which are as good as anything their contemporaries put out. The only really bad track on this album is "Feelin' Alright With the Crew," which is basically a crappy reggae-punk song, which the Clash and the Ruts had already done with much better results.

This album is a classic for fans of `77 punk or early Oi!, and is just as essential as The Clash, Inflammable Material, and Teenage Warning.


People who liked this also liked:
Discharge - Hear Nothing See Nothing Say Nothing [reissue]Jawbreaker - 24 Hour Revenge TherapyMinor Threat - Complete DiscographyIndian Summer - Hidden ArithmeticDescendents - Milo Goes To CollegeThe Clash - London CallingBlack Flag - Slip It InJawbreaker - Dear YouCrass - The Feeding of the 5000Weezer - Pinkerton

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
coathangerkid (January 21, 2008)

Another one of those records that went under the record companies knife... This was released in the UK in 1978 as 'Separates' but in the US it was released a year later as 'High Energy Plan' with a different track listing (most of the original album plus some UK single tracks. The Separates cover is terrible but HEV was much better). I give Separates a 7/10 and High Energy Plan a full 10/10!! With the changes HEP is a brilliant listen. If you buy the Captain Oi reissue, all the tracks from both albums are on it plus a couple more. But enough about that, what about the actual songs you say? Riding a punky new wave sound, 999 create a wicked blend of jangly, intense and moody tunes that were overly catchy and fully of different energies. Homicide is an all time classic. Brilliant guitar lines and perfectly executed. 999 were never a fast band and most of their songs are really midpaced and rely on hooks and good old fashioned songwriting. Lots of cool bass runs, jangly lead guitar lines and top notch drumming. Kind of reminiscent of the Jam at times. Some people are turned off by the vocal delivery but it's suitably fitting. Let's Face It is absolutely cutting and rocks. The same with Action, Out Of Reach and High Energy Plan. Even when they slow it down 999 never lose any of their energy. Brightest View is a perfect example. They formed in 1976 and unlike most of the original punks, they never broke up and are still playing to this day and releasing new material!! This is one of my all time favourite albums and quite the discovery for people who are not familiar with the band. For a better taste of what 999 is about search out their 'Emergency' cd, which is a killer collection of their best tunes re-recorded or pick up Separates and their first album.

For those who are interested High Energy Plan's tracklisting was:
Side 1: Homicide, Rael Rean, Waiting, Let's Face it, Crime Part 1
Side 2: High Energy Plan, Feeling Alright With The Crew, Action, Subterfuge, Brightest View, Wolf

If you have the Captian Oi cd program this in for a killer listen:
Homicide, Tulse Hill Night, Rael Rean, Waiting, Let's Face It, Crime Part 1, High Energy Plan, Feeling Alright With The Crew, Out Of Reach, Action, Subterfuge, Brightest View, Wolf, Soldier, You Can't Buy Me

Anonymous (November 22, 2005)

999 is the fuckin shit.

its like an orgasm in my ears


-Strewtho- (November 21, 2005)

This is pretty good, I don't mind feeling alright with the crew but the other songs are all better, Subterfuge is right up there. If you're new to these guys get the Self-Titled first.

NoUse4aScnName00 (November 21, 2005)

They have a great song - 'Emergency' but most their catalogue reeks as bad as every vapors record.

Anonymous (November 21, 2005)

I'm sorry, but the band looks completly idiotic on the album cover

Scruffy (November 20, 2005)

Wow, Superdude, that was you?

Anonymous (November 20, 2005)

It probably got deleted because the Upstarts are still around and playing shows... The stuff they said in that interview was completely idiotic, but I bet they've had to apologize for it countless times since it was conducted...

Not to mention, the band themselves weren't actually being serious. I've read an interview with them where they were wearing Nazi armbands...

As skinheads, it's not really funny for them to be joking about that stuff- but it's just dumb kids' stuff. In the interview you link us to, they act like nationalist skinheads who hate the national front, so I really don't think they were smart enough to think of an honest policy.


superdude (November 20, 2005)

Oh yeah, my comment was by me.

Anonymous (November 20, 2005)

dudes look wack.

Scruffy (November 20, 2005)

Anyone have any idea why someone's pretending to be Superdude in all the review comments?

Anonymous (November 20, 2005)

This review waspretty good, but here's how I would make it better:

1. Uh, that guy looks like Balky.

Anonymous (November 20, 2005)

I read the Angelic Upstarts interview and it's really fucked up. I posted on the Upstarts guestbook asking Mensi to comment. Guess what happened? They removed my posting!?! I tried it again - same result.

Anonymous (November 20, 2005)

This band are great. And their clothes are also awesome.


TheOneTrueBill (November 20, 2005)

I have the self titled album from them. It's a fun listen every once and a while but it's nothing that really grabs me.

Anonymous (November 20, 2005)

I love 999. '77 punk owns all!


gladimnotemo (November 20, 2005)

Eh, I've never really been into 999. From what I understand, they jumped back and forth from punk / garage / new wave or whatever was popular at the time.

Anonymous (November 20, 2005)

Speaking of Teenage Warning, check out this old interview with Mensi of Angelic Upstarts. I was a fan for years until I read his racist comments here.


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