12 Songs, 40 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

The Slits only recorded two studio albums in their (original) short career and their debut, Cut, remains their critical apogee: it’s a must-have for fans of any level. Recorded back in the exciting dark ages of punk for an adventurous Island Records, it’s not quite as primitive sounding as the artwork suggests, but it is raw, nervy and honest. It’s also melodic, sensual, and oddly beautiful. Blending elements of reggae and dub with an art-punk sensibility, Slits relied on stripped-down rhythmic elements: warm, wood-block beats, shimmers of cymbals, and stark shards of simple guitar. Vocalist Ari Up coaxed different sounds from her throat with ease, sometimes singing in an alluring coo, or shrieking spookily, or using a chiding, singsong style. Those with a passing knowledge of the band may know their signature “Typical Girls” or their cover of Marvin Gaye’s “I Heard It Through the Grapevine," but there are plenty of other tracks worth adulation, such as chirpy opener “Instant Hit,” the exuberant “FM,” and the bouncy “Love und Romance” along with its dub version, “Liebe and Romanze.”

EDITORS’ NOTES

The Slits only recorded two studio albums in their (original) short career and their debut, Cut, remains their critical apogee: it’s a must-have for fans of any level. Recorded back in the exciting dark ages of punk for an adventurous Island Records, it’s not quite as primitive sounding as the artwork suggests, but it is raw, nervy and honest. It’s also melodic, sensual, and oddly beautiful. Blending elements of reggae and dub with an art-punk sensibility, Slits relied on stripped-down rhythmic elements: warm, wood-block beats, shimmers of cymbals, and stark shards of simple guitar. Vocalist Ari Up coaxed different sounds from her throat with ease, sometimes singing in an alluring coo, or shrieking spookily, or using a chiding, singsong style. Those with a passing knowledge of the band may know their signature “Typical Girls” or their cover of Marvin Gaye’s “I Heard It Through the Grapevine," but there are plenty of other tracks worth adulation, such as chirpy opener “Instant Hit,” the exuberant “FM,” and the bouncy “Love und Romance” along with its dub version, “Liebe and Romanze.”

TITLE TIME

More By The Slits