Delta 5 – Rough Trade Records – 1979

Mind Your Own Business

Now That You’ve Gone

Great debut 7″ single by Delta 5 which even today, still gets a good few plays here at Penguin Towers. Text below courtesy of All Music Guide.com

Initially inspired by the success of local heroes the Mekons and Gang of Four, Leeds, England’s Delta 5 later emerged as one of the key figures of the feminist new wave. Formed in 1979 by vocalist/guitarist Julz Sale, fretless bassist Ros Allen, and bassist Bethan Peters, the group was begun on a lark, but following the additions of guitarist Alan Briggs and drummer Kelvin Knight, Delta 5 issued their debut single, “Mind Your Own Business,” and found themselves thrust to the forefront of the Leeds post-punk community.

Frequently linked to Gang of Four, creating a similarly abrasive funk sound, Delta 5 was also at the vanguard of the Rock Against Racism movement, and Knight even once sat in for Gang drummer Hugo Burnham. The group’s role as political leaders increased in the wake of a notorious street attack on its members by right-wing thugs, culminating in the rise of the Rock Against Communism groundswell. Their unique two-bass rhythm section set them clearly apart from their peers, and with the success of their second single, “You,” they mounted a successful U.S. tour.

Upon leaving Rough Trade to sign with the Charisma subsidiary Pre, in 1981 Delta 5 issued their debut LP, See the Whirl. Despite the inclusion of some of their early single sides, much of the record fell prey to over-production, and was a critical and commercial failure. The group split shortly after its release.

5 comments
  1. chris
    chris
    December 1, 2008 at 12:24 pm

    Yes, a brilliant single! bought it the day after hearing John Peel play it and still play it out when DJing all these years after.

    Saw them at Stirling Uni on tour with Gang of Four and Pere Ubu. Think it would have been in 1981 or 82. Reviewed it in the zine I was going at the time anyway. Wish the boffins would hurry up and build a time machine so I could travel back and enjoy the show again now.

  2. Pawel
    Pawel
    December 2, 2008 at 1:06 am

    Great!

    Can you post “See the Whirl” album as well?

    Pawel.

  3. Nic
    Nic
    December 4, 2008 at 10:05 am

    Brilliant record: full of energy and drive…

  4. Kieran
    Kieran
    December 12, 2008 at 8:50 pm

    Arguably the best entry on the Wanna Buy A Bridge sampler as well! I used to DJ at WNUR (in Evanston/Chicago area) with a dear friend, and she insisted on playing this one every week…

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