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Dazed_and_Confused

Help w/ The Clash

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See, I've been trying to decide which version of the Clash's debut album to get. I've heard many arguments and discussions on the topic but I haven't heard any good reasons why one version is better than the other. If you could please voice your opinion, I'd really appreciate it.

Just to remind you, here's the track listing:

~UK~

"Janie Jones"

"Remote Control"

"I'm So Bored with the U.S.A."

"White Riot"

"Hate and War"

"What's My Name?"

"Deny"

"London's Burning"

"Career Opportunities"

"Cheat"

"Protex Blue"

"Police and Thieves"

"48 Hours"

"Garageland"

~US~

"Clash City Rockers"

"I'm So Bored with the U.S.A."

"Remote Control"

"Complete Control"

"White Riot" (single version)

"(White Man) In Hammersmith Palais"

"London's Burning"

"I Fought the Law"

"Janie Jones"

"Career Opportunities"

"What's My Name"

"Hate & War"

"Police & Thieves"

"Jail Guitar Doors"

"Garageland"

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The Uk album is the one to get, (if you're only going to buy one), on the basis that it is their first album as it was intended to be. The US "version" is not their first album at all, but more a compilation of early material, comprising much of the album and a few singles/B-sides.

Having said that...Clash City Rockers, Complete Control and White Man In The Hammersmith Palais are amongst the band's best moments, so there's a definite need to have those...also the single version of "White Riot" is better than the album version, and "I Fought The Law" is another classic, so....why not buy the UK first album and then "The Singles" album, to avoid alot of unnecessary duplication? The only track you'll miss out on is "Jail Guitar Doors", but you would get "Tommy Gun" :bow: :bow: :bow: , "English Civil War", "Rock The Casbah", "Know Your Rights", "London Calling" :bow: :bow: , "Bank Robber", etc, etc....

Edited by Guest
minor adjustments

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if you intend on getting all the albums, (and no compilations) then the US one is certainly the best choice. The US cd contains "Complete Control", "(White Man) In Hammersmith Palais", and "I Fought the Law", three of the greatest tracks ever recorded by the group. while the UK version might have the one they intended to release, that was with the thought that you could just buy the singles of those tracks missing from the UK release. "48 hours", "Protex Blue", and "Cheat", (tracks not included on US release) are not in the same league as the songs i mentioned before. The US version is by far superior, but if you already have a greatest hits of the Clash, then you'll probably get more new tracks from the UK release.

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I think my point was that D&C is "trying to decide which version of the Clash's debut album to get". There is only one version of The Clash's debut album: the UK version. These tracks were recorded together, were intended to stand together as "an album", and are therefore truly representative of what The Clash were about in the beginning. I wouldn't dispute that the tracks you mention ("48 hours", "Protex Blue", and "Cheat"*) are probably inferior to the great singles such as "White Man", "Complete Control" (which were recorded and issued some time later, when the band was showing signs of development), but without those tracks, you haven't got The Clash's debut album.

This is why I suggested getting the debut album, The Clash (UK version) (ie. the "real thing", not an assortment of stuff cobbled together a couple of years after the event to help "crack the American market"), and supplementing it with The Singles collection: to get the best of both worlds.

* all three of these are decent tracks and in many ways exemplify the essence of The Clash's original short sharp amphetamine-fuelled adrenalin-rush punk-rock buzz.

Edited by Guest

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calm down man. i was just giving my opinion based on the Clash music that i own. that being "Sandinista!", "London Calling", "Give 'Em Enough Rope", "Combat Rock", "Super Black Market Clash", and the US version, (if you want to call it that), of "the Clash". in addition i've copied from friends most of the songs i'm missing, ("Bankrobber", "Cheat", "48 hours", etc.). sorry if i offeneded you by stating my point of view on the issue. next time if i disagree with you i guess i'll just keep it to myself.

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Steady on, JB. I think there's been some misunderstanding here. Allow me to explain myself.

I am a pedant. Pedantry's my game. I have sought treatment for this tiresome affliction but, regrettably, to no avail.

I do not disagree with you that, on balance, The Clash album described here as the "US version" contains superior material, since "White Man (In Hammersmith Palais) and "Complete Control" in particular represent The Clash at their absolute best (IMO). I only wanted to clarify whether D&C really wants the debut album by The Clash, or a collection of the best of early Clash, featuring much, (but not all), of their debut album. If he's not bothered about the album he procures being the debut album, in the strictest sense of the word, and is more concerned at having a collection of top quality early Clash material, then , by all means, he should buy the "US version". (Which won't, however, be "the debut album".) It was just a question of semantics really, and what D&C actually wants. I still think he should go the extra mile and procure (at least) two Clash albums. You appear to be in as good a position as any to know which albums to recommend.

Since we're broadly in agreement that The Clash were a brilliant band, and on which bits of their back catalogue are indispensible, I would hate for us to fall out over my irritating habit of meticulous attention to semantic detail and superfluous pontification. I never intended to cause you any anger and offence, nor have I been angered or offended by your expresssion of your perfectly legitimate point of view. Please feel free to express your disagreement with me at any time (except mealtimes).

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The U.S. version sucks anyhow. If I remember correctly they had an explicit lyric censorship placed on it, by the governing boards & R.I.A.A.; forcing Strummer & Co. into editing certain parts of two of the tracks.

The American version was released 2 years later than the original U.K. copy, which IMO has better songs that weren't featured on this blatant ripoff duplicate. Personally I would recommend a double disc that covers their original recordings, which I don't think can be found anywhere.

The Clash's U.K. Singles Chart 1977 - 80

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