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Fast Product was an independent record label, established in Edinburgh by Bob Last and his partner, Hilary Morrison, in December 1977. Its first release was also the first single by the Mekons, released on 20 January 1978.
The label issued the first records by a number of early and influential post-punk bands from Northern England, including the original Human League, the Gang of Four and the Mekons. Fast Product also released the first singles by the Scottish punk bands Scars and The Flowers. The label also released compilations of various new bands called 'ear comics' or Earcom. Many of the label's releases were also produced by Bob Last with Morrison producing photographs and visuals for the record sleeves.
Fast Product's releases challenged pop music conventions (hence the label's early monikers: "difficult fun" and "mutant pop"), and through its releases and marketing invoked a DIY punk spirit and generally socialist political outlook. Often packaging records with a caustic yet subtle sideswipe at consumerism (for example, the image of a wall of gold discs on the cover of the Mekons' second single), Fast Product attempted to show that all aspects of the record business, from musicianship to design to distribution, could be taken out of the hands of the major labels.
The source for the information below is the website vinylnet.co.uk.
- FAST 1 The Mekons - "Never Been In A Riot" / "32 Weeks" / "Heart & Soul" 7" (1978)
- FAST 2 2.3 - "Where To Now?" / "All Time Low" 7" (1978)
- FAST 4 The Human League - "Being Boiled" / "Circus Of Death" 7" (June 1978)
- FAST 5 Gang of Four - "Damaged Goods" / "Love Like Anthrax" / "Armalite Rifle" 7" (December 1978)
- FAST 7 The Mekons - "Where Were You?" / "I'll Have To Dance Then (On My Own)" 7" (November 1978)
- FAST 8 Scars - "Adult/ery" / "Horrorshow" 7" (1979)
- FAST 9a Earcom One (The Prats, The Flowers, Blank Students, Graph & including pink cardboard flexi disc of Jo Callis) 12"
- FAST 9b Earcom Two (Joy Division, The Thursdays & Basczax) 12"
- FAST 9c Earcom Three (DAF, Noh Mercy, Middle Class, Stupid Babies, From Chorley) double 7" (1979)
- FAST 10 The Human League - "The Dignity of Labour" 12" (some with flexi-disc) (1979)
- FAST 12 Dead Kennedys - "California Über Alles" / "Man with the Dogs" 7"
- FAST 11 The First Year Plan - Compilation of single releases, licensed to EMI, so also has catalogue number EMC 3312)
- Mutant Pop - US reissue of early Fast Product and Pop Aural singles by the Mekons, the Gang of Four, the Human League, The Flowers, 2.3 and Scars (PVC/JEM Records 1980)
- FAST 3 Fast Product The Quality Of Life No.1 (zine issued March 1978)
- FAST 6 Fast Product The Quality Of Life No.2 (zine issued April 1979)