When punk rock has raged, Pete Shelley of Buzzcocks has played love songs and has changed the history of music – Washington Post


At the end of the 70s, the initial punk rock fire explosion had run out of fuel in England. The heterogeneous assortment of musicians who had revived rock music with pounding chords and raw voices had imploded, like the Sex Pistols, or were demolishing it into new musical terrain.

Elvis Costello has slapped production and keyboards of sound, helping to shape the new wave. Joy Division and Wire have turned their music into canvases for ambitious artistic projects. The clashes were destined to fill the stadiums with the hymns that attracted reggae and the ballroom. At the end of the decade, punk no longer sounded like a punk.

But the band that has probably left the most important sign of punk rock has become a legend not changing the format but sticking to the basics of pop. Buzzcocks, a four-piece Manchester, entered the scene in 1978 with a couple of albums that would have been among the biggest hits of the genre. It is a legacy that deserves a second look after Thursday's news that Pete Shelley, the band's composer and guitarist, had died at 63 years of a suspected heart attack, as reported by the BBC.

The melodic music of Shelley and the Buzzcock has become the stage for alternative rock that defined the years' 90, as well as the pop punk and the emo that still reigns today. Without the band, probably there would be no Pixies or Nirvana, Blink-182 or Paramore.

"Buzzcocks practically invented a style that would have influenced multiple generations of solitary hearts and quirks," Green Day frontman Billie Joe Armstrong said on Instagram on Thursday. "Do not hesitate to write beautiful melodies in a strong and fast punk."

Shelley – born Peter McNeish – was a student of what is now the University of Bolton in Manchester when he and another student named Howard Trafford read a review of the first show of the Sex Pistols in 1976, according to the ; Independent. Friends went to see the revolutionary act and immediately began what would become Buzzcock.

Although the band played its first opening performances for the Sex Pistols, its style was not a carbon copy of the music that Johnny Rotten and the company were using to shock the establishment.

The band played with the same frenetic energy of the amphetamines of its first punk cohorts. But the Pistols screamed of anarchy and violence that tore the way. The Clash has railed against geopolitics. Shelley, however, tweeted hymns of love and romance frustrated with titles like "What Do I Get?" And "Ever Fallen in Love" (With Someone You Should & # 39; & # 39; ve "). The music was also anchored to catchy melodies that were directly influenced by the Beatles. And the singer's high-pitched voice was in direct contrast to Joe Strummer's bark or Rotten's sour screech.

The Buzzcocks have nevertheless managed to arouse controversy with their music. The band's first single, "Orgasm Addict," was banned from the BBC by the clear sexual message of the melody, according to Allmusic.com. The single blackballed only raised Buzzcocks' profile among punk fans. In 1978, the band released two complete albums: "Another Music in a Different Kitchen" and "Love Bites".

But the compilation of the single songs of the band, published in 1979, "Singles Going Steady", would have been his definitive affirmation.

The raging pace of the recordings and the tours wiped out the band members, causing Shelley and Buzzcocks to close in 1981. The band reorganized in the 1990s and continued to spread music until 2014. However, Buzzcocks' musical legacy was cemented by those raging love songs written as traditional punk was coming to the surface.

Shelley's death was announced on Thursday on the band Twitter page.

"It is with great sadness that we confirm the death of Pete Shelley, one of the most influential and prolific singer-songwriters in the UK," he said.

Shelley's tributes began to spill immediately into both his original punks and younger musicians, inspired by the band's classic years.

"I am totally shocked and saddened to hear the untimely death of Pete Shelley," the original Sex Pistols bassist Glen Matlock he wrote on Twitter. "A superb singer-songwriter, artist and a totally sweet boy who was one of the very few original punks and even one out of it."

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