Punk Tributes to Discharge, to the Exploited, to Metallica, to the Misfits CD-R (35 brilliant covers). Check audio (all songs). Free for orders of £55+


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Various – In Defence Of Our Future – A Tribute To Discharge
Label: Distortion Records – DISTCD42
Format: CD, Compilation
Country: Sweden
Released: 2001
Genre: Hardcore, Punk, Grindcore
1 Uncurbed– A Hell On Earth 1:54
2 Acursed– Medley: The End / Nightmare … / Final … 2:51
3 Totalitär– Born To Die In The Gutter 1:56
4 Epäjärjestys– A Look At Tomorrow 1:24
5 Avskum– You Take Part In Creating This System 1:14
6 Driller Killer– Decontrol 1:54
7 Nasum– Vision Of War 1:04
8 Diskonto– They Declare It 0:51
9 E.N.S.*– Fight Back 1:01
10 Perukers– Protest And Survive 2:02
11 Disjah– Why 0:59
12 Håll Keft– Tomorrow Belongs To Us 1:15
13 Meanwhile– Always Restrictions 1:26
14 Genocide SS*– Death Dealers 1:27
15 Victims– Doomsday 2:09
16 Disfear– Realities Of War 1:04
17 D.D.A.– Hear Nothing See Nothing Say Nothing 1:13
18 Snifter– You Take Part In Creating This System 1:19
19 Greed (3)– It’s No T.V. Sketch 1:29
20 Motorbreath– Wars No Fairytale 1:17
21 Dysfunctional & Dysfucked– Is This To Be 1:25

Discharge are an English hardcore punk band formed in 1977 in Stoke-on-Trent, England. … Soulfly, Prong and Arch Enemy have covered Discharge’s songs in tribute.

‘They made Sex Pistols sound like Take That’: the fury of Midlands punk

Discharge, GBH and other scrappy bands rose up out of a scene where gigs were like wars. Clay Records’ leading lights recall how technique came second to ‘going 100mph’

GBH. L-R: Ross Lomas, Colin Abrahall, Colin Blyth, Scott Preece of GBH
‘The audience had become the bands’ … from left, Ross Lomas, Colin Abrahall, Colin Blyth and Scott Preece of GBH. 


In the late 1970s, Mike Stone changed punk for ever from the boot of a BMW. He had started Clay Records from a tiny record shop in Stoke-on-Trent, and after initially distributing the releases from the back of his car, Clay’s hardcore punk bands Discharge and GBH made the UK charts and are now considered pivotal influences on numerous metal styles from thrash metal to black metal, grindcore to an entire genre named after Discharge, D-beat.

Both bands have been covered by some of thrash metal’s biggest artists – Anthrax, Slayer, Sepultura and Metallica, whose frontman James Hetfield credits the British bands as “the beginning for me … I loved Discharge and GBH and still do.”

Discharge founder Terry “Tezz” Roberts was a schoolboy in Stoke when the band started in 1977 with his brother Tony (“Bones”, guitar) and bassist Roy “Rainy” Wainwright, following instructions in Sniffin’ Glue fanzine: “Here are three chords. Now start a band.” Forty-five miles away in Birmingham, GBH singer Colin Abrahall – still spiky-haired at 58 – saw the Ramones play at Birmingham’s Top Rank and decided: “The day I leave school I’m going to become a punk.”

The Birmingham scene was centred around the currently disused Crown pub near New Street station, which had once hosted the first Black Sabbath gig but by the late 70s was a punk-rock hotbed where GBH played (initially as Charged GBH), rehearsed, and even built the stage. “Everyone in there seemed to be in a band,” says Abrahall, when we meet pre-coronavirus crisis in their Digbeth rehearsal room, surrounded by posters from 40 years of his band. Birmingham was erupting with chart-bound pop – Duran Duran, UB40 and Dexys Midnight Runners – but the punk scene was DIY.

“I bought a bass guitar off a kid at school for £18,” says the singer. “Our first drum kit was an electric fire.” Hair was spiked up with everything from “Vaseline to egg whites, which made your head stink, so I discovered soap. That was great unless it rained, in which case we’d run around with Tesco bags on our heads.”

Unbeknown to either band, the man who would bring their music to the world was undergoing his own awakening in London. Mike Stone, pushing 30, wasn’t exactly a punk rocker. The former mobile DJ was working for the fledgling Beggars Banquet label when chancing on the Lurkers (who he’d subsequently manage, then sign to Clay) playing in a basement made him want to get involved. “They had the same energy and excitement as the Who,” he says over a coffee in Stoke. “I’d watched the Who open-mouthed live in Leeds when I was 15. But music had become stagnant – punk was what was missing.”

Stone relocated to Stoke after meeting and marrying a woman who lived there. He started a shop, Mike Stone’s Records, and a label called Clay Records at 26 Hope Street, funding the latter with £1,000 from a relative and naming it after the city’s potteries. Today, the site – now a disused fast-food joint awaiting demolition – looks lonely and unloved. Back then it was a dynamo of musical revolution, the wheels of which were initially set in motion by a 17-year-old girl.

Tanya Rich on the day she met Discharge.
Tanya Rich on the day she met Discharge. Photograph: Publicity image

Privately educated Tanya Rich, an unlikely rebel, had cut her hair and dyed it “all sorts of colours” after hearing the Saints song (I’m) Stranded. Punks in Stoke were rare enough; female ones nonexistent. “Akko, the original Discharge drummer Anthony Axon, saw me and ran down the road to tell the boys, ‘There’s a female punk in Stoke!’” she says with a laugh, still blue-haired at 59. “They ran back and said, ‘We’re a band’.”

Rich dated Rainy, then became Discharge’s manager, driving their success. “Punk had all these female artists, from Siouxsie Sioux to Beki Bondage,” she explains. “Female managers were unknown. But I had chutzpah. I got them gigs with the Clash, the Ruts and the Damned.” Rich gave Stone a demo tape containing songs such as Acne. He remembers saying: “You sound like the Sex Pistols – what’s the point? But then they came back with something else.”

As Tezz tells it, the classic Discharge sound resulted when roadie Kelvin “Cal” Morris replaced him as vocalist, bringing growling, shouty vocals of the kind that are now standard in extreme metal. “I switched to drums and did the [furiously fast] D-beat,” Tezz says. “The band changed overnight.” Stone saw the revamped band play live – a slab of raw meat hurled his way almost hit him. “I think they were trying to impress me,” he says. “But suddenly, Discharge sounded like a bulldozer. They made the Pistols sound like Take That.” When Stone saw GBH supporting Discharge at the Victoria Hall in Hanley he thought: “I’ll sign them as well.”

GBH singer Abrahall’s theory about why punk’s second wave was much harder and faster is that “the audience had become the bands, but we didn’t have the same musical skills [as the Clash et al], so we went 100mph”. Tezz suggests that the growing metal element was because: “we all loved Motörhead, although punks wouldn’t admit it”.

The intense music also mirrored its environment. “People would either take photographs of us or want to fight us,” Rich says, while Abrahall remembers “being chased by bikers, skinheads, or straights – as we called normal people. Police vans would wait outside the Crown targeting punk rockers.”

“The gigs were like wars,” says Discharge’s Tezz. “Violence every night. People would think, ‘What’s this noise?’ and throw shit at us. When we opened for the UK Subs it turned into a massive battle.” A wry laugh. “When we started getting popular it thinned out the criminals.”

Abrahall wrote GBH’s first song, Generals, on hearing that the government were considering bringing back conscription. Discharge meanwhile sang about “being shit on far too long” (Decontrol) or the evil of warfare (Never Again). “Cal was into Crass and always had his head in pamphlets,” Tezz explains. “That’s where he got ideas from.” They showed the nuclear survival film series Protect and Survive at gigs, while scene character Biffo the Gasmask would “dress up as a housemaid in a gas mask, vacuuming the stage”.

Mike Stone, who ran Clay Records in Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent, outside his former shop in the city centre. Photograph: Christopher Thomond/the Guardian

Stone captured this creative explosion as label head and producer, despite knowing little about studios. “But I’d watched Steve Lillywhite working with [mod band] the Merton Parkas,” he explains. “In my naivety, I recorded Cal singing twice and layered one vocal over another. It sounded like a wall of sound. So I did the same with the guitars.”

For Discharge’s Realities of War EP, in 1980, Stone went to take a band shot at the back of 26 Hope Street. “But Cal didn’t want his photo taken, so turned his back”. The resulting closeup of Morris’s studded leather jacket became “the most iconic sleeve I ever released”. Stone drove a bootful of the EP to “smirking distributors, who’d go, ‘OK, I’ll take a few.’ But then after John Peel played it on Radio 1 it was like a hurricane. Punks all over the country wanted the record, and thousands of them copied that leather jacket.”

Clay’s roster weren’t the only British hardcore punk bands. Other labels sprang up, notably No Future. In 1981, Edinburgh band The Exploited – who formed two years after Discharge – appeared on Top of the Pops. After the show, guitarist Big John Duncan says, “women old enough to be our mums were coming up to us and being really nice, but the song Dead Cities captured a moment when cities were rioting”. The BBC producers also wanted Discharge, but Morris turned them down. “Real shame,” sighs Tezz, drily. “It would have been nice for my mum.”

Nevertheless, Discharge’s 1982 debut Hear Nothing, See Nothing, Say Nothing went Top 40, while GBH’s City Baby Attacked By Rats reached No 17 on the charts. “In between a Jimi Hendrix collection and Paul McCartney,” chuckles Stone. “I thought, fuck me, I’ve done it.” Both bands enjoyed more success before the collapse of distributor Pinnacle in the mid-80s took the label down. “I lost £25,000,” Stone says. “It wiped me out.”

GBH continue touring and recording, reaching a new audience after Slayer covered Sick Boy. Abrahall has spotted Travis Barker and Rita Ora wearing GBH T-shirts, and is grateful to Stone for “giving me a start, and a very happy life”. Gizz Butt, former guitarist of English Dogs who began their career on Clay as hardcore punks, remembers the 1984 article hailing them as “the dawning of speedcore”. Meanwhile, three-quarters of the classic-era Discharge lineup are together, and Metallica have been spotted at their gigs.

Forty years on, Tezz is keen to credit Stone for “taking a chance, when other labels said we made noise, not music”, although he struggles to comprehend the impact of a band he started after selling frozen fish to buy equipment. “I can’t listen to those bands and say, ‘That’s what we invented.’ But I know we changed the direction of music.”

The man who made it possible still manages old signings Demon and recently did courier work. Sadly, Stone sold the rights to his catalogue when he was broke years ago, but is proud of what his label started. As he drops me off at Stoke station, he nods towards the statue of renowned potter Josiah Wedgwood and jokes: “There should be one of me.”


Great purchase! Every song is covered very nicely. I would highly recommend this product!
This comp was on our watch list and so is U.S. Chaos, this track USA was one of the most powerfull songs in my eyes, growing up in England during 1982 and brings back the real meaning of high powered punk. I always wondered what happened to U.S. Chaos. Well I guess they have refined their sound to be even more powerfull then when I saw them so long ago. CUDOS! Keep it up guys, we will meet soon on contract terms in a studio! Mr. Munsch treats you well.

Various – A Tribute To The Exploited – Punk’s Not Dead
Label: Radical Records – RAD 70026-2
Format: CD, Compilation
Country: US
Released: 1999
Genre: Punk, Oi, Hardcore
1 Blanks 77– Punk’s Not Dead 1:21
2 Dehumanized – Don’t Forget The Chaos 2:59
3 Billyclub– UK82 2:33
4 Bruisers– SPG 2:14
5 Road Rage – Alternative 1:43
6 Niblick Henbane– Cop Cars 2:35
7 Heidnik Stew– Dangerous Visions 2:06
8 US Chaos*– USA 3:05
9 Violent Society– I Hate You 2:35
10 Squiggy– Fuck The Mods 1:35
11 Last Year’s Youth*– Army Life 2:27
12 Abalienation– Don’t Pay The Poll Tax 3:23
13 I.C.U. – Dead Cities 2:03
14 The Cuffs– Blown To Bits 1:24
15 Last Call – Dogs Of War 1:40
16 Special Duties– Sid Vicious Was Innocent 2:26
17 Bomf!– Safe Below 3:10

Various – A Punk Tribute To Metallica
Label: Cleopatra – CLP 0992-2
Format: CD, Compilation
Country: US
Released: 2001
Genre: Punk
Hide Credits
1 Sloppy Seconds– Hit The Lights
Producer – Sloppy Seconds
Written-By – Hetfield*, Ulrich*
2 Agent Orange (7)– Seek & Destroy
Engineer – Mike Milchner
Producer – Mike Palm
Written-By – Hetfield*, Ulrich*
3 D.O.A. (2)– Motorbreath
Producer – D.O.A. (2)
Written-By – Hetfield*
4 Flipper– Sad But True
Producer – Flipper
Written-By – Hetfield*, Ulrich*
5 Dee Dee Ramone– Jump In The Fire
Producer – Dee Dee Ramone
Written-By – Hetfield*, Ulrich*
6 Dr. Know (3)– Master Of Puppets
Producer – Dr. Know (3)
Written-By – Burton*, Hetfield*, Hammett*, Ulrich*
7 Vice Squad– Enter Sandman
Producer, Mixed By – Paul Ronney*
Written-By – Hetfield*, Hammett*, Ulrich*
8 Total Chaos (2)– One
Producer – Total Chaos (2)
Written-By – Hetfield*, Ulrich*
9 Vibrators*– Nothing Else Matters
Producer – Vibrators*
Written-By – Hetfield*, Ulrich*
10 Anti-Government– I Disappear
Producer – Julian Beeston
Written-By – Hetfield*, Ulrich*
11 Söur*– Am I Evil
Producer – Söur*
Written-By – Tatler*, Harris*
12 Shotgun Remedy– For Whom The Bell Tolls
Producer – Bill.T. Miller*
Written-By – Burton*, Hetfield*, Ulrich*
13 S.B.I.– Until It Sleeps
Producer – S.B.I.
Written-By – Hetfield*, Ulrich*

This cd totally rocks!!!! I am not really familiar with most of the bands here but I can say that this is an original concept (whilst some would beg to differ). Punk covers of metal. Every Metallica album is covered from here except “Reload” (wonder why? 🙂 Anyway, the best songs on here are “Sandman”, “I disappear” (way cool) and even one of the covers that Metallica covered from Diamond Head “Am I Evil” is covered here. It is always good to hear covers of Metallica (Think Korn, Kid Rock), but being a punk album, the cd sometimes suffers from that “punk production” but then again, what better way to do Metallica songs? They are a band that always has reveled in the fact that they played punk songs by the Misfits and Anti Nowhere League in their garages in the early days up ’till now. But still and yet, because of few such flaws, I give this album 4 stars.
2 people found this helpful
This CD is terrific. I don’t even like Metallica. The high points for me are DOA, Agent Orange, Vice Squad, Dee Dee Ramone, and Flipper. This CD is worth the price for the sonically destructive Flipper “Sad But True” alone. While they [beautifully] destroy the technical side of Metallica in true Flipper dischordant form, the lyrics sound like they could have come from either band in their prime. There’s definitely a common thread there. (I heard the original “sad but true” on the radio recently and sorry, but it just does not compare!) The Vice Squad’s pre-shout-at-the-devil-Motley-Crue-style take on their cut is notable too. This CD oozes with full-on energy and I’m hooked on it lately, although I’ve had it for about 9 months now! I just ordered “Smells Like Bleach,” a Nirvana trib with mostly the same line-up of bands, and I expect it to be real good too 😀 Rock on peeps! [I reserve 5 stars for absolute classics, so 4 is darn good]

This album contains the most inventive and refreshingly interpretive rendition of Master of Puppets I’ve ever heard.

You’ve heard every one else on the planet, now here some new views. And if Dee Dee’s Jump in the Fire isn’t the punkest, then Shotgun Remedy’s For Whom the Bell Tolls takes the cake.

Children In Heat – 13 Tributes To The Misfits
CD, 1996, Tribute