Next month sees the release of Leeds DIY label Bomb the Twist’s ‘Days of Our Youth’ – a quirky compilation featuring fresh interpretations of Delta 5 songs.
Part of Leeds’ rich musical heritage, Delta 5 emerged from the post-punk scene in the late seventies along with Gang of Four and Mekons. Their choppy guitars, stripped-back drumming and left-wing lyrics continue to provide inspiration for musicians over 30 years from their first gigs at The Fenton on Woodhouse Lane.
This new compilation was inspired by Kelvin Knight, drummer and founding member of Delta 5, who died in December 2015. Members of Leeds band Esper Scout began the project as a way of expressing their gratitude to Kelvin, who put them in touch with the US record label Kill Rock Stars.
“We first met Kelvin at a small, understated gig at The Packhorse”, says Sarah Statham, lead singer and guitarist of Esper Scout. “The aim of the tape is to raise awareness of Leeds’ cultural past and help keep it alive. A lot of bands held and continue to hold Delta 5 in high regard. Kurt Cobain was a fan, and I’ve met countless people for whom their music has meant a lot to them”.
The 11-song cassette tape and download will appeal to existing fans of the post-punk pioneers but also aims to introduce Delta 5’s music to new audiences.
Esper Scout bassist Rebecca Jane says they chose to release the album on cassette to reflect the ethos of DIY punk culture.
“Having something like a cassette is like stepping back to the days when we’d all record things on our little portable tape recorder and mic”, says Rebecca. “It’s that base-level DIY approach to sharing music with your friends.
“We would have loved to release it on vinyl, but we felt that wasn’t in the spirit of the release. You can’t press vinyl in your bedroom!”
Contibutions to the project include – to name but a few – Esper Scout, Annie Gardiner of Hysterical Injury, and London-based Witching Waves. The release also features Kevin Lycett of Mekons, appearing as one half of The Hill Bandits, and a contribution from eighties punks The Expelaires.
The limited run green tape also comes with a free download.
Days of Our Youth will be released by Bomb The Twist on 20 May 2016.