Boasting one of punk's essential band names, The Vibrators played their first show 30 years ago, when punk was still a baby pulling the safety pins out of its diaper, supporting The Stranglers. By the end of that first year, they had a classic single out ("We Vibrate") and had backed Chris Spedding on the goofy punk-rock cash-in "Pogo Dancing." Signed to Epic in '77, they toured with Iggy Pop and Ian Hunter, and released a debut album, Pure Mania, that Trouser Press would one day honor as "a treasure trove of memorable ditties that strip down pop in a parallel to The Ramones' streamlining of it . . . a brilliant record." While they've seen their share of lineup changes and even a breakup since the golden age of Pure Mania, this year's model still sounds great on Punk: The Early Years, a spirited revival of their favorite punk hits, from their own immortal punk-rock ballad "Baby Baby" to the early best of The Ramones, the Dead Boys, and The Clash, with guests Wayne Kramer of the MC5 and The Dickies' Leonard Graves.
Get the Music Newsletter
Keep your thumb on the local music scene each week with music news, trends, artist interviews and concert listings. We'll also send you special ticket offers and music deals.