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D.I.Y.: Blank Generation: The New York Scene (1975-78)

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D.I.Y.: Blank Generation: The New York Scene (1975-78) Review

by Stephen Thomas Erlewine

From the outset, New York punk rock had more subgenres and styles than its British counterparts. Even the Ramones, who were seemingly the most straightforward band on the scene, had a distinctly arty conceit behind their fusion of garage-rock, bubblegum, and pop-culture kitsch. Most of their contemporaries had similar attitudes, whether it was Blondie with their sexy, ironic revision of '60s pop, Television's cerebral guitar rock, Richard Hell's jaggedly atonal rock, Patti Smith's punk poetry, or Suicide's eerie synthesizers. All of those bands are collected on the superb overview D.I.Y.: Blank Generation: The New York Scene (1975-78), along with such cult favorites as the Dictators ("[I Live for] Cars and Girls"), Mink DeVille ("Let Me Dream If I Want To"), Wayne County, the Dead Boys, the Heartbreakers, and the Mumps. While Talking Heads are missing from the collection, Blank Generation nevertheless is an accurate and nearly flawless portrait of the heyday of New York punk.

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