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London's Burning : True Adventures on the Front Lines of Punk, 1976ndash;1977
"[Thompson] knows his stuff and can organize and write well about it. Libraries that pride themselves on well-rounded music and pop culture collections should purchase his work." --Library Journal
"Excellent anecdotal pop-music history." --Booklist
"Fans of the genre will relish this chronicle from an insider's perspective." --Kirkus Reviews
"He concocts colorful, driving portraits of the artists and we learn a lot from their struggles and triumphs as told by Thompson." --Paper
"Thompson, the 'king of rock book writing,' manages like a good director to efficiently shuffle characters, giving his book[s] a sense of cohesion and refreshing twists and turns. Always a good read." --Hard Radio
"Thompson's a bit of a wiz, it must be said . . . Truly authoritative . . . compelling reading . . . Extraordinarily well researched, insightful and very funny . . . A dazzling accomplishment . . . Thompson is unafraid to have a lively opinion on (and a deep love for) the music he covers. And boy, there is an awful lot of it." --Record Collector
"Of everything I've read on punk rock, London's Burning paints the truest portrait of the time." --Cherry Vanilla
"A fond collection of memories from the early days of punk." --Slug Magazine
The summer of 1976 through the summer of 1977 was the most significant year in British rock history, when punk rock rose from a murmur on the streets to a roar of defiance that still reverberates today. This collection of vivid memories of concerts and cultural flash points focuses on what was happening on the streets and in the clubs, answering questions like What brought punks together with London's disenfranchised Rasta community? What made Teddy Boys--middle-aged men who dressed like 1950s rockers--hate punks so much that they roamed in packs looking for teenagers to beat up? What was it like to be in the now legendary Roxy Club? and Were the Sex Pistols really any good as a live band? Memories from others who were there--including members of the Damned, the Adverts, the Patti Smith Group, the Maniacs, and the Tom Robinson Band--add to this story of punk rock as it happened, stripped of hindsight and future legend, and laid bare.
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Chicago Review Press
April 30, 2009
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