Love Is the Slug: Complete BBC Sessions

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For a band whose commercial success in the U.K. was ultimately modest, Fuzzbox at one point got to do a bunch of BBC sessions within a very concentrated period of time. Out of the 18 songs on this compilation, 14 were first transmitted in three sessions within about a month of each other in October and November of 1986; the other four come from a session broadcast at the end of 1987. The big treat of BBC sessions has traditionally been otherwise unavailable material, and on that score this is a disappointment, as the only track that didn't show up on their official releases is a not-so-entertaining a cappella rendition of "High Hopes." Much of the repertoire comes from their debut album, with the set list including their small British hits "Rules and Regulations," "Love Is the Slug," "What's the Point," and "Self." Like their early records, it's enthusiastic and not terribly tuneful punk that's heavy on grunting and distorted guitars, but has a rather hollow sound, particularly on the bottom end. Actually, the sound thickens considerably and moves more toward straight rock on the 1987 session, and it's a welcome improvement. Among the four covers is a truly vile a cappella version of "Bohemian Rhapsody" that isn't good for laughs, if that was the intention.