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Ghost Canyon

Title - 'The Albums: 1987-2007' [4CD Box-Set]
Artist - 999

For those not in the know, 999 are an English punk rock band, formed in London in December, 1976.

From the period of 1976 to 1985, the line-up of 999 consisted of Nick Cash (vocals, guitar), Guy Days (lead guitar), Jon Watson (bass guitar) and Pablo LaBrittain (drums).

LaBrittain was temporarily replaced in 1980 by drummer Paul Edward aka 'Ed Case' while he recovered from a motor accident and bassist Jon Watson left the band in 1985 and was replaced by Danny Palmer; who himself was succeeded by Arturo Bassick in 1991.

Between 1978 and 2007, 999 released fourteen singles and twelve studio albums. Five of the singles released by 999 between 1978 and 1981 charted within the Top 75 in the UK Singles Chart, with one further single released by 999 in 1978, "Homicide", charting within the Top 40.

In addition, as a result of extensive touring in the United States in the early 1980s, the band's third and fourth studio albums: The Biggest Prize in Sport and Concrete, each charted on the U.S. Billboard 200.

Despite having formed in 1976, 999 have only experienced two permanent changes to their original line-up and has continued to record and play live, leading AllMusic to describe the band as "one of the longest-lived groups of the punk era."

Following on from the success of their first 999 box-set (The Albums: 1977-80), Cherry Red Records UK now present a further four albums from one of the aforementioned founding fathers of the whole Punk Rock movement.

Concentrating on the years 1987-2007 this 4-CD clam shell box-set contains an amazing 61 more tracks!

CD 1: Lust Power And Money (Live)
1. 'Inside Out'
2. 'Hit Me'
3. 'Don't You Know I Need You'
4. 'White Trash'
5. 'Feelin' Alright with the Crew'
6. 'Obsessed'
7. 'On the Line'
8. 'Let's Face It'
9. 'Emergency'
10. 'English Wipe Out'
11. 'Nasty Nasty'
12. 'Homicide'
13. 'Lust Power and Money'
14. 'My Street Stinks'
15. 'Titanic Reaction'
16. 'I'm Alive'

Recorded at the legendary Klub Foot in London it has a track listing that reads like a “Greatest Hits Live” compilation, with classics such as ‘Nasty Nasty’, ‘Emergency’ and ‘Homicide’ all included.

Kicking off with some rather triumphant introductory backing track sounds, both 'Inside Out' and 'Hit Me' are glorious introductions to what to expect from the album.

Even though they are forever labelled as one of the founding fathers of the whole Punk Rock movement, there's nothing on this live album that screams all-out Punk Rock angst, in truth.

Further tracks such as the Wild West-inspired 'Obsessed,' the melodic pop rock of 'On The Line,' and both the brilliantly reaching 'Emergency' and drumtastic 'Homicide' are all further evidence that 999 were way more pop punk than they ever were balls-deep punk.

CD 2: You Us It!
1. Black Flowers for the Bride'
2. There Is No Glory in Mary's Story'
3. Signed Dangerous of Hollywood'
4. Bye Bye Bones'
5. Everybody Needs It'
6. It's Over Now'
7. Bye Bye England'
8. All of the Days'
9. Big Fast Car'
10. Absolution'
11. Deep in the Shadow'
12. Run for Your Life'
13. Don't Tell Me'
14. Crazy Crazy Crazy'
15. White Light'

The second disc in this wonderful box-set features 1993’s ‘comeback’ album You Us It! which saw the addition of new member Arturo Bassick, formerly of The Lurkers.

After 3 consecutive live albums, 999 released You Us It! and you simply cannot tell it had been that long given the musical depth and scope of this terrific album.

The band follow their well-received and now accepted recipe of two-and-a-half-minute songs, but this time it feels like the inspiration lyrically has waned.

Much like they were relying on lyrics of days gone by to still be of some concern to their legion of fans. Chock full of simple melodies, sure you can't help but think you've already heard it all before (as you most likely had), but tracks like 'Black Flowers,' 'Bye Bye Bones' and definitely 'Absolution' are all a wee bit stronger, bolder in the mix here, that's for sure.

CD 3: Takeover
1. 'Takeover'
2. 'Didn't Mean to'
3. 'No Prisoners'
4. 'Headcase'
5. 'Salvage Mission'
6. 'Fit Up'
7. 'Out of Our Heads'
8. 'I Can't Wait'
9. 'Split Personality'
10. 'Damp with Tears'
11. 'Edge of the World'
12. 'Falling'
13. 'Really Like You'
14. 'Jam Me Up (With Something Nice)'
15. 'Pile Up'

The third disc is the Takeover album which was originally released in 1997 by seminal Indie label Abstract Records.

Here we find the lyrics having been spiced up a little and inclusive of some funny wink-wink lines, the songs are upbeat and also, in places, a little funny throughout.

'Salvage Mission, 'Didn't Mean To, 'I Can't Wait,' and 'No Prisoners' are just a few of the tracks that, although more mature in nature, could have fit on any of the first four albums.

Sure this album, much like its predecessor has their simplest stuff ever produced, but 999 had something and their fans loved it regardless.

CD 4: Death In Soho
1. 'Gimme the World'
2. 'The System'
3. 'Innocent'
4. 'Last Breath'
5. '99 Days'
6. 'Rock 'N Roll World'
7. 'Get Off the Phone'
8. 'Horror Story'
9. 'Stealing Beauty'
10. 'What Do You Know'
11. 'Deep Peace'
12. 'Too Much Money'
13. 'Life of Crime'
14. 'The Avenue'
15. 'Bomb You'

The fourth and final disc is 2007’s Death In Soho album which features the single ‘Gimme The World’ and is – at present – the last studio album issued by the band.

Celebrating their 30th Anniversary with the release of this album, and with three of the four original members still rockin' the rafters (Nick Cash, Guy Days and Pablo Labritain), Death in Soho is yet another fine release from the quartet; and was, after yet another hiatus, their first studio album in nearly nine years.

Recordings songs now more akin to the sound of their earlier punk rock days, this album, in my humble opinion, lovingly reverted 999's sound back to their good old days.

Still going strong to this day, 999 are the only band to have played every one of the “Rebellion” Punk Festival’s in all its guises and they already have the following dates confirmed for 2019:

March 8 - Doncaster, The Leopard
March 9 - London, Camden, Dublin Castle
March 10 - Minehead, Great Music Alternative Music Festival
March 21 - Germany,Hamburg, Monkeys Music Club
March 22 - Germany, Dusseldorf, Haus Der Jugend
March 23 - Germany, Berlin, SO36
April 4 - Exeter, The Cavern
April 5 - Plymouth, The Junction
April 6 - Nottingham, The Maze
April 19 - Stamford, Mama Liz’s
April 20 - Harpenden, Public Halls
April 21 - Stockton On Tees, Georgian Theatre
May 4 - Birmingham, The Mill
May 5 - Coventry, The Arches
May 10 - Sheffield, The Corporation
May 11 - Cardiff, Tramshed
June 15 - Bedford Esquires
June 16 - London New Cross, Amersham Arms
June 27 - Worcester Marrs Bar
June 28 - Bournemouth Anvil Rock Club
June 29 - Corby White Heart
August 3 - Blackpool Winter Gardens, Rebellion Festival

4CD Box-Set Purchase Link

999 @ Twitter!