Hawkwind: 77

Anarcho hippie acid heads fight the Punk Wars.

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Hawkwind’s sonic trajectory, recreational pursuits and temperament made them potential punk godfathers in waiting. Trying to curry favour in the year that Brit Punk broke was never their style, though.

The first half of this collection, corralling prolific live and studio output from the year when the two 7s clashed, makes it clear that Brock and co’s combat-trousers-clad successors were operating in a world the recently Lemmy-lessened, Ladbroke Grove rowdies had already mapped.

Several shades of mind-altering exhilaration can be experienced on empowering, dystopia-debunking dynamos such as Masters Of The Universe and Welcome To The Future.

But regardless of fashion, Messrs Brock, Calvert and co continued their own brilliantly defiant course – setting the controls to the heart of a chemically induced sun while enjoying hits such as Quark Strangeness And Charm’s title track. Far out and beautiful.

Gavin Martin

Late NME, Daily Mirror and Classic Rock writer Gavin Martin started writing about music in 1977 when he published his hand-written fanzine Alternative Ulster in Belfast. He moved to London in 1980 to become the NME’s Media Editor and features writer, where he interviewed the Sex Pistols, Joe Strummer, Pete Townshend, U2, Bruce Springsteen, Ian Dury, Killing Joke, Neil Young, REM, Sting, Marvin Gaye, Leonard Cohen, Nina Simone, James Brown, Willie Nelson, Willie Dixon, Madonna and a host of others. He was also published in The Times, Guardian, Independent, Loaded, GQ and Uncut, he had pieces on Michael Jackson, Van Morrison and Frank Sinatra featured in The Faber Book Of Pop and Rock ’N’ Roll Is Here To Stay, and was the Daily Mirror’s regular music critic from 2001. He died in 2022.