The Wild Boys Last One of the Boys / We’re Only Monsters 7″ reissue
Prior to joining the SPECIALS, Roddy “Radiation” Byers formed the Coventry, UK punk band the WILD BOYS along with his brother Mark, guitarist/vocalist John Thomson, and bassist Rob Lapworth. Roddy left the band in 1978, but the rest soldiered on without him, releasing their sole 7” in 1980. The B-side “We’re Only Monsters”—penned by Roddy—became a very minor hit in the UK, but the record was otherwise all but forgotten after the band fell apart in 1981. But like so many of the records Reminder rescues from the collector scum sicko set, this one needs to be heard! “Last One of the Boys” is a catchy little power pop number that sounds like a cross between the NERVES and the BUZZCOCKS. It’s good, but it’s easy to see why folks preferred this B-side—there’s so much to love! The delirious guitar hook, the busy-ass bass line, the infectious bubblegum streetpunk chorus, the singer’s aping of Pete Shelley to the point of caricature, all just superb shit! It’s hard to imagine how this record has remained this obscure for this long. In typical Reminder fashion, the physical edition of the release is a faithful recreation of the original 7”. However, the digital release comes with two bonus tracks—the only other songs the band recorded. These tracks are in the same power pop/new wave vein as the tracks from the 7”, but they were written for a musical called Risky City about Coventry’s violent underbelly. Incredible!