Disco Zombies – Drums over London 7″





Aaah! The artwork for Disco Zombies second release is one of the best, if not THE best artworks done in the history of punk rock. The scanning don’t do it justice, but no matter what, this is the way to do a wraparound sleeve, so take notice if you’re in a band and about to release a 7″. I’ve seen it in a greenish version as well but nothing says punk as much as pink, right?!

Drums over London is one of those perfect punk hits that grabs you gently by the throat and makes you walk around and sing the chorus for days on end, and admit that you want to hear it a few more times then the 32 times that are already in the song. Or maybe not as it would make the song slightly too long, which is my guess of what the bassist thought as well as he just gives up playing 3.23 into the song! Maybe he got lost in all his noodling?

Heartbeats love isn’t as immediately catchy, but at least the rhythm guitar manage to fuck up the intro in a very amusing way. I think I know why he played rhythm instead of lead… Well, a catchy chorus and a great and short outro makes it a minor hit at least.

I’m quite sure the label was named after the South Circular line in London and I have a feeling someone once said that one of the members had a record shop called South Circular as well. Someone from the UK should have more info about this band I guess.

Country: UK
Year: 1979
Label: South Circular
Format: 7″
Songs:
Drums over London.mp3
Heartbeats love.mp3

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52 Responses to Disco Zombies – Drums over London 7″

  1. Jay Thurston says:

    Holy shit! Where has this record been hiding??? They truly don’t make them as catchy as this one…fucking brilliant!

  2. Great blog dude! Request for Mob 47’s Kärnvapen Attack

  3. The Flakes // Drummer says:

    Oi! Will post Crude SS in a couple of days. Cheers and up the punx!

  4. The Flakes // Drummer says:

    Drums Over London is sooo catchy up until 2.31. Suffer from the same dilemma as the Stereo Kiddies 7″. Thank god for the digital age where you can cut off a track to make it listenable.

  5. 2.31??? What kind of music do you think this is Peter? Punk songs are meant to be over 4 minutes! You’ve been brain washed by all those faster-faster-louder-shorter-songs Discharge clones you keep on hailing here. The punk movement was started by Phil and his friends in Genesis, that’s a fact!

    PS. Please post Avskum’s Crucified by the system and some Moderat Likvidation DS.

  6. Charlie M says:

    That’s great! I have a great track they also did called – “Where have You Been Lately Tony Hately?” which I taped off John Peel in the early 80s – where does that come from?

    The South Circular refers not to a trainline but almost certainly to the lesser sister of the North Circular, a radial road that runs round the south of London’s inner city. See here for fascinating details – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A205_road
    Any further transport related queries – I’m your man….

    The vocalist Dave Henderson was indeed the same Dave Henderson who wrote for Sounds music paper in the early to mid 80s and compiled that paper’s wildly inspirational “Wild Planet” guide that turned me on to Nurse With Wound, Industrial and noise music as a whole, experimantal + avant garde music; and the whole Recommended/ReR axis.

  7. Charlie M says:

    That’s great! I have a great track they also did called – “Where have You Been Lately Tony Hately?” which I taped off John Peel in the early 80s – where does that come from?

    The South Circular refers not to a trainline but almost certainly to the lesser sister of the North Circular, a radial road that runs round the south of London’s inner city. Any further transport related queries – I’m your man….

    The vocalist Dave Henderson was indeed the same Dave Henderson who wrote for Sounds music paper in the early to mid 80s and compiled that paper’s wildly inspirational “Wild Planet” guide that turned me on to Nurse With Wound, Industrial and noise music as a whole, experimantal + avant garde music; and the whole Recommended/ReR axis.

  8. Mark says:

    Thanks for this. I have the single and have been meaning to find it and digitise it for ages. I bought in August 79 in Bodmin, Cornwall when on holiday from a really cool independent record shop run by enthusiasts, the like of which used to be in every big town, alas no longer.

    Hearing it again after maybe 27 years was just fantastic and I sung along to the words which are even more relevant now.

  9. LHOOQtius says:

    Another awesome song that led the band… nowhere. Maybe producers heard that intro guitar on the 2nd track and decided it best not to risk finding out if they could pull this off for a whole career, but that’s our loss, because any band that could write a catchy track like “Drums Over London” coulda been a contender.

  10. Christian says:

    I girl I used to hang out with made me a mixed tape once and turned the tracking WAY up when she dubbed this single, so I was under the impression for a few years it was much, much faster than it actually is.

    Still a great record, though. How did I miss this being posted months ago?

  11. doug says:

    Andy Gill was the guitarist for the Disco Zombies (he went on to found Food Records) and he used to work at Counterpoint Records, London Road, Forest Hill, London. I was a regular customer and spent my days bunking off school in the store. When the single was released I help fold the covers, put the stamps on the labels and too it up to Rough Trade in order for it to be distributed. The Disco Zombies also recorded an EP that the title of shich escapes me. South Circular is indeed a road in London (that the record store was on). Great memories of this single. Thanks for posting.

    • doug says:

      Oh, Andy Gill by the way is listed as Andy Ross. I just remembered he used Gill when he was writing for Sounds music paper.

    • gooner says:

      i remember going into counterpoint with my brother (we lived in forest hill) and he made me get the guy who worked there ( i presume was Andy Gill) to sign a copy of it.
      I still have it now :-)

  12. carl tebbutt says:

    The E.P. that you mention was called The Invisible EP which was released on my label Wizzo. The lead track was Top Of The Pops which was actualy recorded about 6 months before the Rezillos song but due to being messed about by a pressing plant, theirs got out first. I first saw the band performing at Leicester University after having them pointed out to me by my brothers girlfriend. The band must still have quite a following in Europe as I frequently sell copies of the EP to France and beyond. There was another single released called Mary Millington but I think that their best song is one that I have on a cassette demo called Mr Waverley, an affectionate nod in the direction of the sixties tv show The Man From Uncle

  13. Doug Watson from Glasgow, Scotlabd says:

    The other single was called ‘Here Come the Buts’
    http://www.discogs.com/Disco-Zombies-Here-Come-The-Buts/release/1294008

    Mary Millington was the b-side.

    Andy Ross also released a single ubder the banner of ‘The Steppes’ though I don’t recall the title. If it comes back to me I’ll post it.

    The Tony Hadley track is on this album (see link)
    http://www.discogs.com/Various-Obscure-Independent-Classics-Volume-1-Magnificant-March-Of-The-Dead-Monkeys/release/861610

  14. Doug Watson from Glasgow, Scotland says:

    Sorry for spelling mistakes!

  15. Pingback: Disco Zombies - The Invisible E.P. 7″ « Killed By Death Records

  16. richard jordan says:

    I downloaded “Mary Millington “from i tunes for £79 pence-cheaper than the original.I was @ Leicester poly In 1977 and saw The Disco Zombies several times and once taped a show.The sound was very good,but faded over time.I told my Dad and he said that the whole batch of blank tapes (bought by him)were faulty and he had got his money back!I didn’t buy any of their singles at the time as I had replaced Dave as singer in his previous band the Blaizers,and somehow saw them as a rival band! HA HA HA.

  17. andrew fullerton says:

    I was the drummer in the Disco Zombies and still think that Andy Ross and Dave Hendersen wrote some of the best punk/pop songs ever. You have to be the right people at the right time; sadly we weren’t quite but it was fun anyway. Geoff who played bass and I still play occasionally but not often since I live in Germany now!
    Perhaps it’s time for a comeback; there are plenty of good venues here!

    • Martin says:

      Hi Andrew, that’s actually a comeback I would like to see! Thanks for the geat records and for stopping by and commenting.

      • Gaz Birtles says:

        I was around at that time in another Leicester band called WENDY TUNES. Great period. Great to hear these tracks again. I’ve just recently got back in touch with Dave and suggested a re union. I think he said something like he didn’t know where geoff was these days so wouldn’t do it.
        Go on, Andy, follow it up ;-)
        Come back to leicester to play. We recently did a Wendy Tunes re union when Martyn Watson was 50!!! It was just like 1978 again! But a bit slower ;-)
        Old Punks don’t die……

        • andrew fullerton says:

          Hi Gaz,

          Geoff (Bass) mailed me last week to say that he had been for beers with Dave and Andy Ross and had threatened to reform the band with guitarist Mark.

          I would love to hear Zero again or your version of Just 17 (with Phil on drums of course).

          Best

          Andrew

    • Paul Gray says:

      Andrew,

      Now I know where you got your info! I’d pay good money to see that also but surely not in Germany, it would have to be in London or even Leicester.

  18. John Hawkins says:

    Hey Andy, maybe you and Geoff fancy reforming the band sometime – original line up? Maybe not, I haven’t picked up a guitar since ’78 – quit at my peak!

    • andrew fullerton says:

      Why so shy? That should surely be Johnny “Guitar” Hawkins!

    • Dave armstrong says:

      So did the reunion happen? John hawkins ‘t-bone’ can’t believe that guitar isn’t still buzzin like it did back in st saviuors rd swimming pool era. Ive been trying to track down a copy of the invisible ep – Alison Craig I think borrowed my original copy of “drums”. Id love my sons band to hear the dz stuff, straight and immediate.

    • Dave Henderson says:

      Johnny Guitar Hawkins are you out there? I have the album for you.
      Another Disco Zombie

  19. Will Woods says:

    I remember hearing Drums over London on the Peel Show back in ’79.
    I ived in a little town in Cheshire and would go into Manchester every week to the underground market and buy my records from a walk-in unit which had all their singles for sale plastering the walls.
    I bought it single with the Lime green artwork for its sleeve. Never knew they did it pink, but dayglo lime green was also punk. Rememeber these colours were brand knew to all us idiots living in black and white land at the back end of the depression-hit Seventies.

    It was great to hear again, such a brilliant song, like other people who’ve responded here, the lyrics are so memorable;
    ….’the natives are brandishing their Spear and Jackson’s’ genius!!!!

    • andrew fullerton says:

      Perhaps we should re record it (in one take of course) and I will promise to try to keep everyone to the same speed throughout this time!

  20. Shaun Gallagher says:

    Wendy Tunes were better though, weren’t they ?

  21. Jack says:

    Their new line up leaves something to be desired.

  22. Rob Grant says:

    I saw the Disco Zombies 11 times – see below – the dates are reversed for sorting purposes. Most of the gigs were in Leicester – the first was 3rd March 1978. I also remember the first time I saw Dave Henderson – it was queuing to get into Leicester Demontfort Halls one Sunday afternoon for a daytime punk event – the first the city council had nervously allowed – it made front page of the Leicester Mercury the next day! All I can remember is one bloke walking around with his tie on fire… good job I keep a diary.

    19800729 Moonlight Club
    19800930
    19800815 Scala Cinema
    19780623
    19800813
    19780617
    19780303
    19780304
    19780625
    19780313
    19780624

    The Invisible EP on Wizzo (Wizzo – Faster Than The Speed of Sound!) had (as well as Top of the Pops) ‘Time Will Tell’, ‘Disco Zombies’ and my favourite ‘Punk A Go Go’ – the bit where they spit out the letters spelling the title still randomly pops into my mind all these years later…

    I saw Wendy Tunes 28 times – they weren’t strictly a punk band having more pop influences. I feel both bands had their place and were of equal importance at the time. That’ll be a fiver each please.

    Open Channel D Mr Waverleeeeeee

    • Martin says:

      Hey Rob. If you do a search on this site you will find the bands other 7 inches.

      • Rob Grant says:

        Bingo – Thanks Martin! Fired with enthusuiasm I’ve just searched my MP3 archive – I transferred all my cassettes before they disintegrated – I’ve got a copy of a demo tape that the Disco Zombies did all those years ago – it’s got unreleased tracks – Man From Uncle, TV Screen Existance, Honesty and some of the singles… It’s one big 35Mb file.

        I’ve also got a GIF file of a 101 Club flyer with Wed 13th September (1979?) – Dining Out Records with The Sinatras + Disco Zombies, and a scan of the ‘All Night Horror’ event at the Scala Cinema, a Dining Out event list, and a Leicester Poly New Wave Society Gig poster (Robin Banks – ha! – still send him a Christmas card) all featuring the Disco Zombies.

        If you want any of this stuff let me know how I can contact you and I’ll upload it or something.

        Thanks again – brilliant stuff – cheers!

        • dan selzer says:

          don’t know if everyone’s seen it, but we’re working on an official Disco Zombies reissue. Would love to see some of those scans! Reach me at dan@acuterecords

  23. The Flakes // Drummer says:

    Rob, do you know how to handle FTP uploads? If so I can grant you access to an account where you can upload it.

    • Rob Grant says:

      Yes I do – that would be OK. I don’t want to give out my email address on the blog though so how do we do this?!

  24. The Flakes // Drummer says:

    Contact me at info at kbdrecords dot com

  25. Piers Miller says:

    The Disco Zombies are reforming and playing a gig for Stuntfox celebrating 30 years of The Bull & Gate on 1st October 2010!!!!!!

  26. Stu Manpid says:

    does anyone have the lyrics of drums over london and can post it?
    i´am from germany and cannot understand the whole lyrics.
    i know a coverversion of this song for more than 20 years. the coverversion is of the germanpunk legend EA 80 and was published on the compilation “HARDCORE vol. 1″ in 1988. it´s their single song in english.
    thnx.

  27. Vince Barnard says:

    Hi,
    Did Rob Grant’s DZ demos and unreleased tracks get uploaded, and can anyone get hold of them? And does anyone know of a location to hear or download Where Have You Been Lately? I would also like to read the lyrics the lyrics of Drums Over London – I have never quite got them all, not even after 32 years of regular listening! BTW how was the reformed gig, anyone who was there?
    Cheers

  28. Mike Raven says:

    Just found this blog on a google whim. Great stuff. I was in the same hall of residence at Leicester University as Andy and Adrian. Even saw them play some stuff in the bar, although I don’t think it found its way into the DZ or Members catalogs !! Andy introduced me to all sorts of great music, and it was fun to see what he and Adrian got up to later. Just checked out my carefully preserved copy of Drums Over London that has survived the humidity of Hong Kong and now the cold of Buffalo, NY. Perfect spring record. Be well guys.

  29. dan selzer says:

    If anyone’s still interested, Acute’s release page for the Disco Zombies compilation is up:

    http://acuterecords.com/blog/?page_id=572

    including free downloads of some tracks from the demo cassette that aren’t on the LP

    • andrew fullerton says:

      Hi
      Fantastic compliation.
      Where did you get those photos and can I get copies?
      Andrew Fullerton (drummer disco zombies)

  30. dan selzer says:

    All the photos came from Dave Henderson. Email me directly: dan at acuterecords.com and we’ll sort it out.

  31. dan selzer says:

    It’s out. Ordering info on the Acute website.

  32. Stu Manpid says:

    come on guys and native speakers. does anyone can post or write down the lyrics of this song. my english is not good enough to understand the whole lyrics from listenig to this song. it would be very nice.
    follow the link in my name and you will find a coverversion of this song with different lyrics by the german punk legend EA 80. more than 20 years ago they had the same problem like me…..

  33. Mickey Hall says:

    Used to know mark sutherland really well back in the day best mates at college.
    is he still about ?

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