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From Seattle to the Medway Delta (with Detours)

Back in the 60s when the sound of the British Invasion swept the USA, young Americans from coast to coast grew their hair long, affected the English (via Italy) dress sense (with a touch of Ivy League) and had a rave up. In many cases they took it that bit further out and in the process they invented the garage sound.

Though not known for extremes, the Northwest city of Seattle produced some of the furthest out sounds and spawned the wildest of the wild in the shape of the Sonics.

Some 20 years on and Mickey and the Milkshakes with Billy Childish brought it back home in the wake of the UK’s Punk Rock explosion in the unlikely setting of the Medway in the Thames Delta, just southof London in an unfashionable way. The Milkshakes in turn inspired another bunch of bored teens in Seattle and 10 years later Mudhoney, Nirvana et al were all the rage, but that’s another story.

But the disaffected youth of Seattle were not the only ones to go into their garages and emergefuelled up. In Los Angeles, Sunset Strip had a riot of its own and deep in the heart of Texas they risked life and limb to be longhairs in the land of the longhorns.

And so at the dawn of hippiedom America raged and all those years later in the middle of Thatcherism the London-based garage bands snarled in the UK.

Selected releases