999 - Separates (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick


Separates (1978)

United Artists

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.