Y (The Pop Group album)

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Pop group Y.jpg
Studio album by The Pop Group
Released April 20, 1979
Recorded Ridge Farm Studios in Surrey, England
Length 40:11
Label Radar
Producer Dennis Bovell, The Pop Group
The Pop Group chronology
For How Much Longer Do We Tolerate Mass Murder?

Y is the debut studio album of English post-punk band The Pop Group. It was released on April 20, 1979 through Radar Records.[1] The album was produced by dub musician Dennis "Blackbeard" Bovell at Ridge Farm Studios in Surrey.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars[2]

Writing for Fact Magazine, Mark Fisher described the album's "delirial montage of funk, free jazz, Jamaican audio-mancy and the avant-garde" as "both carvernous and propulsive, ultra-abstract yet driven by dance music’s physical imperatives," and noted the "sonic alchemy" of Bovell's production work.[3] Stylus Magazine called the album "a landmark of lunatic post-punk," writing that "these are political punk tunes deconstructed so that only the skeleton remains, and weaving between those bare bones are some of the nastiest sounds ever made."[4] In 2004, Pitchfork Media ranked Y at number 35 on its list of the greatest albums of the 1970s, saying that "unlike most of the late-70s' no-wave types (and perennial imitators), The Pop Group were less concerned with eschewing convention than with vehemently eviscerating it."[5]

The album has had a lasting impact, with artists such as the Minutemen, Primal Scream, Sonic Youth and Nick Cave citing the album as an influence on their work. Bassist Mike Watt commented that they "were making music that we were kind of inspired by and interested in" and that "they gave us permission to try to find what we were about. The Pop Group said “let’s take Funkadelic and put it with Beefheart. Why not?”"[6]


Publication Country Accolade Year Rank
Rockerilla Italy Albums of the Year[7] 1979 14
The Wire United Kingdom The 100 Most Important Records Ever Made[8] 1992 *
Spex Germany The 100 Albums of the Century[9] 1999 51
Il Mucchio Selvaggio Italy 100 Best Albums by Decade (1971-1980)[10] 2002 41
Rock de Lux Spain The 200 Best Albums of All Time[11] 2002 145
Paul Morley United Kingdom Words and Music, 5 x 100 Greatest Albums of All Time[12] 2003 *
Pitchfork United States Top 100 Albums of the 1970s[5] 2004 35
Stylus United States Top 101-200 Albums of All Time[4] 2004 168
Blow Up Italy 600 Essential Albums[13] 2005 *
Uncut United Kingdom The 100 Greatest Debut Albums[14] 2006 82
The Guardian United Kingdom 1000 Albums to Hear Before You Die[15] 2007 *

(*) designates unordered lists.

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by The Pop Group

Side one
No. Title Length
1. "Thief of Fire"   4:35
2. "Snowgirl"   3:20
3. "Blood Money"   2:56
4. "Savage Sea"   3:01
5. "We Are Time"   6:29
Side two
No. Title Length
1. "Words Disobey Me"   3:25
2. "Don't Call Me Pain"   5:34
3. "The Boys From Brazil"   4:15
4. "Don't Sell Your Dreams"   6:37


Adapted from the Y liner notes.[16]

Release history[edit]

Region Date Label Format Catalog
United Kingdom 1979 Radar LP RAD 20
Japan Warner-Pioneer Corporation P-10705F
United Kingdom 1996 Radar CD SCANCD14
Japan WPCR-722
United Kingdom 2007 Rhino, Radar 5101-19920-2
Japan 2013 Warner Music Group WPCR-15282


  1. ^ "Y LP". thepopgroup.net. 2014. Retrieved September 5, 2014. 
  2. ^ Dougan, John. "The Pop Group: Y > Review". Allmusic. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  3. ^ Fact
  4. ^ a b Howard, Ed (March 22, 2004). "Top 101-200 Albums Favorite Albums Ever". Stylus Magazine. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  5. ^ a b Ubl, Sam (June 23, 2004). "Top 100 Albums of the 1970s". Pitchfork Media. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  6. ^ Manchester, Guy (2014). "Legendary Post Punk Band The Pop Group Release Video for Colour Blind". Louder Than War. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Rockerilla End of Year Lists". Rockerilla. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  8. ^ "The Wire - 100 Most Important Records Ever Made". The Wire. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  9. ^ "100 (+17) Alben". Spex. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  10. ^ "100 Best Albums by Decade". Il Mucchio Selvaggio. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  11. ^ "The 200 Best Albums of All Time". Rock de Lux. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  12. ^ "File Under Popular Music (4) – 100 or More Greatest Albums". Bloomsbury Publishing. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  13. ^ "600 Essential Albums". Blow Up. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  14. ^ "The 100 Greatest Debut Albums". Uncut. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  15. ^ "1000 Albums to Hear Before You Die". The Guardian. Retrieved September 11, 2014. 
  16. ^ Y (sleeve). The Pop Group. London, United Kingdom: Radar Records. 1979. 

External links[edit]