There. I said it.
Growing up in the States, The (US version of the) Clash was the second Clash Lp I got (having been released after Give ‘Em Enough Rope in America), and what a different animal from its UK counterpart it is. In fact, I was all prepared to write that the US version was (against the run of play) superior but, having bought the CBS release today at the Mersham Boot Fair (on the way home from Great Chart!) for £1 and listened to it tonight, I’m not so sure.
For the record, so to speak, the American re-jig contains the single versions of “Clash City Rockers”, “Complete Control”, “White Man In Hammersmith Palais”, “I Fought The Law”, “Jail Guitar Doors” and “White Riot” while excising “Deny”, “Cheat” and “48 Hours”.Okay, if we can’t decide on the better edition of the Lp called The Clash, can we at least choose between the single (more staccato and sound effect-laden, à la Joe Gibbs) and Lp takes of “White Riot”? Hmmm…no–simply too close to call.
I’d previously only owned the single version (on 7″ [above], on the US album and Clash On Broadway box set), so while I was vaguely aware of the second version, the album cut was a rough ‘n’ ready pleasant surprise. ________________________________________
If someone can think of a wider aesthetic differential between two albums in a single year than this one and Enigmatic Ocean, I’d like to hear it.