The Mutants: Rhythm And Punk Review

From Motor City to Oil City.

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Based around the nucleus of Chris Constantinou (The Wolfmen, Adam Ant) and Paul Frazer (Black Futures), The Mutants set out to retrace the roots of punk, new wave and ska, with a few iconic pals in tow.

The revolving line-up of musicians weighing in on the dozen tracks includes Wayne Kramer, Wilko Johnson, Rat Scabies, Norman Watt-Roy, TV Smith, Charlie Harper, Jake Burns and Neville Staples.

It makes for a lively party, bristling with spontaneity, especially the sound system tag team of Staples and Smith on Brixton Est Loco, while the grubby garage of Walking Wounded reunites Kramer and Johnson for the first time since they shared a bill at a London rock‘n’roll show in 1972.

For old-school punk ranting, though, it’s hard to beat Harper’s stroppy delivery on Freedom In Chains. It’s the sound of men of a certain age reconnecting with the venom of their youth.

Terry Staunton was a senior editor at NME for ten years before joined the founding editorial team of Uncut. Now freelance, specialising in music, film and television, his work has appeared in Classic Rock, The Times, Vox, Jack, Record Collector, Creem, The Village Voice, Hot Press, Sour Mash, Get Rhythm, Uncut DVD, When Saturday Comes, DVD World, Radio Times and on the website Music365.