Borders break-in yielded big break for punk-rock veterans the Mekons

It’s now over four decades since a group of wayward youths broke into a quiet Galashiels cottage, earning themselves a footnote in Borders musical history.

THE SOUTHERN REPORTER :: In the 1970s, there was nothing unusual about housebreaking sadly, unemployment being high and there being little in the way of entertainment for the disenfranchised young.

This break-in was unusual, however. Nothing was stolen, but these youths, in the eyes of some, were more dangerous to society than mere petty criminals as these were punk rockers, regarded by many as a threat to the old order, and they were here to record one of the most pivotal punk records of the 1970s, having travelled all the way up from Leeds to do so. Their recording would become the first 7in release on the influential Edinburgh label Fast Product. It was not only set to create a blueprint for the emerging post-punk genre but also to inspire a generation of misfit Scottish youths to believe they too, regardless of ability or class could become pop stars, albeit in their own unique way.

The Mekons, the unkempt bunch of Leeds University art students responsible for that single, Never Been in a Riot, being reissued next month, are now regarded as one of the most visionary groups of their era and would later combine punk with politics, country and folk [ . . . ]

Read more at THE SOUTHERN REPORTER: Borders break-in yielded big break for punk-rock veterans the Mekons


How Jon Langford’s Four Lost Souls found a second home in Muscle Shoals 

In his 40 years of making music, Jon Langford has earned a reputation for not doing things by the book. That applies most notably to the Mekons, a band the Welsh native cofounded in Leeds in the late 70s, whose sound has evolved over the decades from rudimentary punk to a dark, strange melange of rock, folk, country, and even reggae. In 1984 they played a series of benefits for striking coal miners, whose communities were being starved by Margaret Thatcher’s decision to close many UK mines—a burst of activity that produced their early masterpiece Fear and Whiskey. When the Mekons went on their first U.S. tour in 1986, it was a a revelation for Langford. “Starting as a teenager, there was a longing for America and wanting to go there and wanting to find out things about it,” he says. [ . . . ]

Read Fully Story at: How Jon Langford’s Four Lost Souls found a second home in Muscle Shoals, Alabama | Bleader

The 10 Best Mekons Songs

“The Mekons are the most revolutionary group in the history of rock ‘n’ roll.” — Lester Bangs

Years before the term “collective” became a convenient and gradually more irritating shorthand for bands seeking a novel descriptor, there was the Mekons: a genuinely anarchic co-mingling of multi-media artists rampantly talented in the disciplines of music, visual arts, prose writing, and general hell-raising.

Source: The 10 Best Mekons Songs – Stereogum