Not About To Die (Studio Demos 1977-1978)
If Not About to Die sounds familiar, it’s because you might’ve listened to it in its tatty bootlegged form over the decades. Not About To Die was originally released in the early ‘80s by a shady fly-by-night label known as Amnesia Records. Originally, the songs – rough demos, actually – were submitted to EMI by Wire, but they were never intended for release. Of course, the demos leaked as demos do, especially when a junior record exec knows there's an under-the-table profit to be had. That said, the Amnesia bootleg came from a shoddily-dubbed fourth-generation cassette transfer and it sounded like it, yet Wire fans have cherished the recording anyway.
Flash forward to now: The band is giving the If Not About to Die demos a proper release. In this official Pink Flag launch, the songs are straight off the band’s master analog tape; remastered with the appropriate credits, liner notes, and artwork. You’ll hear early versions of “French Film (Blurred),” “Used To,” and “Being Sucked In Again,” which were later released on 1978’s Chairs Missing. You’ll also find “Once Is Enough,” “On Returning” and “Two People In A Room,” which would pop up on 1979’s 154. These songs are so undeniable – simple, loud, purposeful, economical – a perfect LP, and the best thing you’ll hear all week. There'll be more than a few pensioners cocking a brow at this one.