By the time pop punk ‘broke’ in 1994 off the back of grunge with the hip SoCal sounds of Green Day, Offspring, Rancid, NOFX and Bad Religion all scoring big, the UK scene had already been and gone. More’s the pity that Senseless Things – along with fellow late-80s/early-90s bands like Mega City Four and Snuff – never got a taste of the real success they deserved, despite influencing the likes of Ash and Supergrass.
Building on the frantic grebo punk of 1989 debut Postcard CV – the melodic harmonies of Ramones, Dickies and Buzzcocks filtered through 80s indie rock – 1991’s The First Of Too Many featured a fuller and more polished mature sound but lost the raw urgency of their early material.
A relentless touring band, Ver Things built up a loyal fan base, and with its sleeve by Tank Girl artist Jamie Hewlett (who would later find his own animated chart success with Gorillaz), their first album for Epic should have catapulted them into the mainstream.
But, lost in the cacophony of grunge du jour, it peaked at No.66. It wouldn’t be until album number three, Empire Of The Senseless, that they nudged inside the Top 40. This three-CD/double-vinyl expanded edition includes the original album, and a live album from 1991.