Spiral Scratch

Mute Records
Release date
17 Dec 2007
Running length
4 tracks
Running time


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    Track     Duration Listeners
1 Breakdown 2:17 25,649
2 Time's Up 3:07 13,936
3 Boredom 2:52 59,643
4 Friends Of Mine 2:16 16,205

About this album

Spiral Scratch is a four-track EP by the British punk rock band Buzzcocks, recorded in 1976 and released in January 1977. It was the first punk record to be self-released (that is, without the support of a record label), and only the third ever by a British punk band. When reissued in 1979, it reached number 31 in the UK Singles Chart. It is often said that the many small DIY labels that sprang up across the country in 1977 took Spiral Scratch as their inspiration.

Buzzcocks recorded the tracks on 28 December 1976 at Indigo Sound, Manchester on 16-track tape. According to Devoto, “It took three hours , with another two for mixing.” Produced by Martin Hannett (credited as Martin Zero), the music was roughly recorded, insistently repetitive, and energetic.

The band, having no record label support, had to borrow £500 from their friends and families to pay for the record’s production and manufacture. The EP was released 29 January 1977 on the band’s own New Hormones label, making Buzzcocks the first English punk group to establish an independent record label. Despite this, the disc quickly sold out its initial run of 1,000 copies, and went on to sell 16,000 copies, initially by mail order, but also with the help of the Manchester branch of music chain store Virgin, whose manager took some copies and persuaded other regional branch managers to follow suit.

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  • Hollie452

    I just came to say greatest EP ever, but we've clearly got that covered.

    15 Feb 4:59pm Reply
  • ladyemero

    Greatest EP ever. But of course, we all know that.. [2] Yup we do!

    15 Jun 2011 Reply

    agreed, one of the best eps

    15 May 2011 Reply
  • RDMcNamara

    Greatest EP ever. But of course, we all know that..

    16 Jan 2010 Reply

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